Severe/profound hearing loss (SPHL) can be more than just a worsened state of mild/moderate hearing loss.
Anyone who has mild/moderate hearing loss can experience frustrations while communicating. This can lead to socially withdrawing from others because it becomes too challenging and requires too much effort. As we’ve all been made well aware of, we know that becoming too isolated can cause depression.
The strain of trying to hear others, or read their facial expressions can cause a person with hearing loss to become fatigued. When others communicate with you, they may not be accommodating to your listening needs.
SPHL is Apparent on a Daily Basis
Anyone who has SPHL has difficulty with communication in every conversational situation. It doesn’t matter if the room is loud or quiet.
This obstacle hinders your capacity to form and maintain relationships that are crucial to functioning in society. It’s how we understand ourselves and know where we fit in.
Not only does SPHL cause a hindrance in communication, but you may also experience other negative circumstances:
SPHL influences Mental Health
Any roadblocks that interfere with relationships that you have with others will affect the way you see yourself. This can lead to mental health issues, i.e. anxiety and depression. These two factors escalate social isolation, which is already compounded by poor communication skills.
It’s important to point out that very high levels of depression and anxiety can even be found in those with healthy hearing, who regularly communicate with people who have SPHL. In other words, the main concern isn’t necessarily hearing loss, but the interruption of a natural flow of communication between two or more people.
Getting Help for SPHL
Patients with SPHL need the best intervention immediately. Providing the proper hearing aids, along with auditory training, can guide them to their best hearing. Getting in touch with others, in a safe manner, who are going through the same problems can be of help. Peer support for any dilemma, including hearing loss, can be effective. Knowing that others have gone through the same or similar experiences can give you hope.
If you are noticing any range of difficulty with hearing, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Do you know that there have been numerous studies on the link between heart health and hearing health?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), heart disease is the number one cause of death in America. One in four deaths is caused by heart disease. This is our reminder to you: having a healthy heart is crucial to maintaining healthy hearing.
How is heart function related to your ear health?
Blood circulation throughout the body impacts your ear health. The microscopic hair cells in the cochlea (inner ear) only thrive when there’s a healthy amount of oxygen that goes into the blood.
Heart disease may reduce the amount of blood that comes in contact with the cochlea, which can deteriorate them and impair the way they function when sounds enter the ears. When these delicate cells become weak and damaged, they cannot regrow - this is what leads to permanent hearing loss, especially low-frequency hearing loss.
The Heart and Hearing Health Connection
According to this study, having a personal history of heart problems in addition to obesity, smoking, and peripheral arterial disease (PAD) contributed to both low and high-frequency hearing loss.
In a different study conducted by analysts from Miami University in Ohio, the test subjects who were more physically fit and healthy had better scores on their hearing screenings, particularly among people who were over 50 years old.
More exercise to boost heart health along with other lifestyle changes, like diet or smoking habits, can affect heart and hearing health for the better.
Improve the way you eat by following a heart-healthy diet. Eat fruits, whole grains, and vegetables instead of foods that are high in saturated fats, trans fats, and sodium.
Quit smoking. We are all well aware of the health risks when it comes to smoking. In addition to damaging your lungs, smoking can increase your risk of getting heart disease.
If you or a loved one are experiencing hearing loss, tinnitus, or can no longer hear clearly, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a hearing test and consultation with one of our hearing healthcare providers. We offer hearing aids and assistive listening devices that can get you back on track towards healthy hearing.
If you have a child or grandchild who struggles with focus and completing tasks, you may want to consider getting them tested for both attention-deficit disorder (ADD), and hearing loss. The symptoms of these two conditions are similar, and a child can have both.
Learn more about ADD
You have probably heard of ADD at least once in your life. It’s defined as a set of behaviors, which do not have any known cause and no definitive physical tests. Symptoms of ADD can imitate other health problems like hearing loss.
Children who have ADD may be prone to impulsive behavior, grapple with concentrating during class, substandard skills in organization, may not attempt tasks that demand prolonged periods of mental exertion, and become quickly distracted more than their classmates.
Children with a similar disorder known as attention-deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD) - may also appear to be restless, and attempt to take on multiple tasks at the same time.
Adults and children grapple with these skills, but if they have conduct that is worse than their peers, this could mean that they have ADD or ADHD.
Is it Hearing Loss, Is it ADD or ADHD, or Is it a Learning Disorder
There has been a rise in the number of people who were diagnosed with ADHD within the past few decades. This could imply that there are some misdiagnoses or possible overlap with hearing loss that also increases.
About 3 out of 1,000 children in the U.S. are born with measurable hearing loss in one or both ears. Hearing loss, whether mild or severe, can lead to learning difficulties. A child with any range of hearing loss can miss at least 50 percent of conversations and lectures that occur in school.
Here are some examples of how hearing loss may be mistaken for ADHD:
Children who have ADHD typically only have normal language development in speech that is at the same level as their peers. On the other hand, children with untreated hearing loss may lag in these areas.
There’s a chance that a child could have both conditions, but an accurate assessment is needed to avoid unneeded medication and find the best methods to help the child achieve in the classroom.
Getting treatment for hearing loss will significantly make a positive difference in a child’s life, whether or not they have ADHD.
It can be tricky to distinguish the difference between hearing loss and ADHD. Hearing loss can feel like not being able to hear someone in a conversation where entire words or parts of words are spliced out. It can be difficult to sustain your attention when most of the information is unclear. This is why hearing loss can sometimes be mistaken for ADHD.
ADHD Diagnosis can Help
A proper diagnosis for ADHD can help determine the right course of action for a child.
Children who have hearing loss and ADHD, generally get their hearing tested first.
ADHD is diagnosed through behavioral and psychological symptoms while answering a series of questions that can be subjective.
A Delay in Language Acquisition
Some children who have hearing loss may also experience a setback in their development of speech. Unless there is an early diagnosis, intervention, and treatment with hearing aids and speech therapy sessions, there’s a high chance that they will fall behind their peers in this realm.
If your child is struggling in school and you suspect that hearing loss may be the problem, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Maybe you know a thing or two about what it’s like to have hearing loss, but here are 16 facts that you may not know about.
If you or a loved one are noticing hearing loss, get your hearing checked immediately. A hearing test and proper treatment can help save hearing loss or slow it down from getting worse. Get in touch with us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Do have hearing loss and experienced the frustrations of communicating with people at a hospital? Here are some tips for managing your hearing loss during a hospital visit.
Hearing loss can be equally as important to address as the healthcare emergency that landed you in the hospital. Not being able to completely understand the medical professionals who are taking care of you can be just as scary as your health emergency.
Hospitals can be busy and noisy. People rush in, there are loud machines or announcements over the intercoms, and all sorts of people - from personnel to other patients and their loved ones - are around you and talking all at once. From masked staff members to healthcare workers with unfamiliar accents, it can be overwhelming.
It’s important not to guess or tell people who are helping you that you understand what they are saying when you don’t. An incorrect response could put your entire health at risk.
A lot of people, particularly the older population, go to the hospital without hearing aids. Many people with hearing loss don’t even have hearing aids due to financial reasons, or denial about their hearing loss.
When you are in a noisy and busy environment, like a hospital, your hearing loss can lead to more problems.
People who have Hearing Loss are More Prone to Hospitalizations
Approximately 40 million adults in the U.S. have some range of hearing loss and are more likely to require hospital care. According to research from Johns Hopkins, of these 40 million adults, untreated hearing loss has a 17 percent higher risk of visits to the emergency room. They are also more likely to stay in the hospital, spend more days in the hospital, and have a 44 percent risk of being readmitted within 30 days.
Practices the Hospitals can Implement
Hospitals can help patients with hearing loss by:
Make sure to Advocate for Yourself, or Get Help from a Loved One
Let staff, personnel, and other medical professionals know that you have hearing loss. If necessary, caregivers may need to take on this role.
It is very important that you speak up about your hearing loss, and ask for accommodations. Hearing loss is an invisible disability. On rare occasions, patients have been sent to the “behavioral health” unit where individuals with mental health issues go after misunderstanding or mishearing a question, or even misspeaking.
Wearing Hearing Aids in the Hospital
Even though it is recommended to wear hearing aids from the moment you wake up to the moment you go to sleep, some people leave them at home because they are afraid of losing them.
If you decided to do this, alert the hospital staff about your hearing loss. Ask for a hearing amplifier. Plan ahead of time and practice using captioning apps. Otter is a great choice. With this app, conversations can be transcribed in real-time on your smartphone. For legal reasons, hospitals cannot provide this for you, but you may use it yourself.
If you choose to bring your hearing aids, and they need to be recharged, bring your charger along. The hospital that you go to might be able to track down a charger for you. Remember to carry extra batteries. You can always ask staff members if they have hearing aid batteries available for you.
Hearing is Important to make Proper Medical Decisions
Making medical decisions can happen at any stage during your hospital visit, especially if you arrived for an emergency. Whether you can hear or have trouble with hearing, it can be difficult to understand complicated or unfamiliar medical terms/procedures.
Whenever possible, have a friend or family member with good hearing and concentration involved in your decision. You may also use a transcriber on your phone. Make sure it’s accurate, and get help from the medical staff to verify its accuracy. If you find it too distracting to listen and watch at the same time, record the conversation and read the transcript at a later time.
Remind doctors, nurses, and other staff members that you are hard of hearing and ask them to speak up or repeat themselves when necessary.
What if Your loved one won’t Admit They Have Hearing Loss?
You cannot assume medical staff members will notice that your loved one has hearing loss. On average, only about half of the staff employees will be able to recognize this. Make sure that you inform staff members during the initial admittance and when seeing new medical staff members that your loved one has difficulty with hearing. This is especially important in hospice care and nursing homes.
If you or a loved one, experiences hearing loss and want an easier experience interacting with medical staff, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing. We offer assistive listening devices that can help make your emergency visits pan out better, or we can show you how to use transcription apps.
In a survey conducted by the British Irish Hearing Instrument Manufacturers Association, the topic of tinnitus awareness was discussed.
Approximately 82% of hearing aid providers from the panel revealed that their patients are informed about the connection between hearing loss and tinnitus, leaving 18% who said that their patients are not aware of this association.
One out of 8 people experiences tinnitus. Two-thirds of individuals who have tinnitus, also experience hearing loss. In most instances, hearing loss may be the source of the tinnitus. There are numerous people who, unfortunately, are unaware that they have both symptoms.
The Hearing Loss and Tinnitus Combo
Finding out that you have tinnitus is similar to finding out that you have hearing loss. If you have difficulty hearing high frequencies, the tinnitus usually sounds like a high-pitched beeping, ringing, or hissing sound.
Some individuals who have hearing loss may be able to recognize tinnitus more easily. This is due to their inability to hear as many sounds in their environment that could mask the noises.
Wearing a hearing aid might help with hearing loss and tinnitus. Many digital hearing aids can be programmed to cover up tinnitus by making other sounds slightly louder.
People frequently mistake their tinnitus as the main problem, when it’s the hearing loss that’s causing their frustration. So it’s important to educate and raise awareness about the affiliation between hearing loss and tinnitus. This will help to prevent some of the hardships that may arise and provide the proper resources to help them.
If you or a loved one believe you may be experiencing tinnitus and hearing loss, or only hearing loss, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Do you have older family members who lost their hearing when they were younger, or have experienced difficulties with their balance or even dizziness? Talk to them and learn more about their health issues, it could be genetic.
Hearing Loss within the Family
Types of hearing loss, like presbycusis (age-related hearing loss), can be affected by genetic factors. Essentially, you can acquire an increased risk of hearing loss as you age.
More research is required, but in a study on 376 Caucasian families, genetic influences are a part of presbycusis. The study also noted that even though men generally have more instances of hearing loss, mainly due to noise exposure in traditionally male-dominated jobs, women’s hearing loss was mainly caused by genetic factors.
It is difficult to sift through other components that may impact these studies - such as people’s behaviors that can lead to hearing loss. Families may share the same occupations and habits, so it’s unknown as to whether it’s their genes or the similar behaviors that are connected to hearing loss. It may be a combination of the two.
Be Curious About Your Family‘s Health History
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have stressed the importance of learning about your family’s health history and helping you reduce the risks of developing any potentially avoidable health issues. It is recommended that you create a list of immediate family members, and ask if they have any chronic or severe illnesses and what age they developed them. Share this information with family members and your family doctor. This information can help your doctor determine the proper tests and what age you should start these screenings.
Otosclerosis occurs when there is abnormal bone growth in the middle ear and affects the stapes bone. Some symptoms of otosclerosis include a gradual loss of hearing, usually struggling to hear low-pitched sounds. Other symptoms may include dizziness, tinnitus, or problems with balance.
The risks of developing otosclerosis are based on your family’s history with the disease. It is usually a genetic problem that is passed from parent to child. A child who has one parent that was diagnosed with otosclerosis has a 25 percent chance of developing the disease. There’s a 50 percent chance if both parents have the disease. The demographic that is at most risk are middle-aged white women.
Conductive hearing loss can be the result of the disease. Surgery can usually fix this problem. In rare instances, otosclerosis can damage sensory cells and nerve fibers located in the inner ear, which can induce sensorineural hearing loss.
If you or a loved one are experiencing hearing loss or difficulty with hearing for any reason, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Hearing loss can happen to anyone, and be caused by anything. Sometimes it’s impossible to avoid it. You can reduce those chances by being aware of possible symptoms. The obvious factors, like a loud blast or repeated exposure to intense noises, are obvious causes of hearing loss, but one lesser-known cause is weight gain.
The holidays have ended, and you may have noticed some weight gain after eating all of those delicious foods.
How Obesity Impacts Hearing Health
Obesity can be a heated topic for many people, but some things are undeniable about it: cholesterol that builds in the arteries can lead to blood clots and inhibit proper blood flow. Like every functioning organ in the body, blood flow is needed to make sure that your ears function properly. Bad cholesterol levels that obstruct your arteries cause strain, and as a result, your ear health can be permanently damaged. Obesity is not a direct cause of hearing problems, but there is a higher risk of experiencing hearing loss due to other health factors and obesity can worsen these issues.
What Changes Can You Make to Lower Your Risks?
You can avoid hearing loss by:
You can have high cholesterol whether you are obese or not, so it’s still important to monitor your diet.
If you, or a loved one, are noticing hearing loss contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Temporary hearing loss can be caused by so many different factors, including infections, impacted earwax, or exposure to loud noises. In many instances, this type of hearing loss is mild and it goes away very quickly. In other cases, consistent or severe hearing loss that suddenly progresses should always be addressed by your hearing healthcare provider. Here’s a list of the most common causes of temporary hearing loss.
5 causes of Temporary Hearing Loss
1. Middle Ear Infections
If the region behind the eardrum fills up with bacterial fluid, there’s a good chance that an infection will develop. It’s important to note that the middle ear has a passageway that leads to the back of the throat, so an ear infection can spread due to the flu or virus. These infections are usually found in children, and they may briefly affect their hearing abilities. Typically, only one ear is affected.
An infection in the middle ear can cause fluid build-up as the body tries to fight against the infection. Ear pressure caused by the fluids can affect the middle ear bones, which are used in hearing. In some instances, these fluids create a lot of pressure to the point where the eardrum can become punctured and discharge blood and pus from the ear. A ruptured eardrum can be painful, but it can usually heal itself when the infection is gone.
You can use antibiotics to treat these infections. If you are given an antibiotic for your ear infection, do not stop taking them because you are feeling better. It’s important to continue taking the medication until the infection is gone to make sure the infection is completely gone. Please be aware that some antibiotics can cause hearing loss. Talk to a hearing healthcare provider when considering treatment options.
2. Swimmer’s Ear
If you have recently gone swimming and now have itchy ears, pain, or feelings of fullness in the ears, you might have swimmer’s ear. This is an outer ear infection that occurs in the outer canal when water stays in your ear after being submerged in a body of water. It can infect one or both ears, and it can cause ear pain.
Did you scratch your ears and can’t hear? Swimmer’s ear can also occur as a result of an abrasion or a scratch on your ear canal from using cotton swabs, hairpins, or your finger to clean your ear canal. Please refrain from placing anything small inside your ear canal. This can damage your eardrum.
Again, you can use antibiotics to treat this infection. Your hearing can go back to normal with the proper treatment. Take preventative measures by making sure you get rid of any water that gets trapped inside your ear canal.
3. Loud Noises
Any exposure to very loud noises - whether you’re at a concert, or using power tools without ear protection - can cause temporary hearing loss.
What causes this to happen? The inner ears feature tiny hair cells that gather and transmit sound waves to the brain. These hair cells can become damaged due to very loud noise exposure. It normally affects both ears, although the severity of hearing damage can be worse in the ear that was exposed to more noise. There is usually no pain. Noise-induced hearing loss is sometimes permanent.
As soon as you realize your ears have been damaged, rest your ears immediately. If possible, refrain from being exposed to any more noise by using earplugs or covering your ears with your hands.
In most cases involving exposure to loud noises, the hearing should return in a short amount of time. There may be some permanent damage to the ear’s hair cells. If your hearing does not get better in a day or so, seek professional help.
Remember to carry earbuds or earmuffs that help block out loud noises, if you’re going to be in a loud environment.
A combination of continuous muffled hearing and ringing ears is a sign of tinnitus, which can be caused by exposure to loud noises. Be mindful of the volume, and turn it down on your devices. Where hearing protection.
4. Earwax Buildup
Earwax helps trap dust and other tiny particles that enter your ears before they reach your eardrums. Earwax naturally falls out of your ear canals, but sometimes the wax becomes impacted and obstructs the ear canals. This blockage can lead to sudden hearing loss in one or both ears, which can interfere with sound waves as they make their way through the ear canal and towards the eardrum. A malfunctioning eardrum can lead to poor hearing. It can affect one or both ears and usually doesn’t cause pain.
5. Side Effects from Medication
Some easily accessible drugs, like aspirin, have been connected to hearing loss and tinnitus in both ears. If you notice anything different about your hearing after taking a new medication, inform your healthcare provider. You may be advised to switch medications. This form of hearing loss is typically temporary, but there are some instances - particularly if another medication isn’t available for serious conditions - when hearing loss can become permanent.
Don’t ignore hearing loss, whether it’s temporary or you have been experiencing it for a while now. Untreated hearing loss can worsen and cause additional problems other than the inability to hear.
Get in touch with us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation with one of our hearing aid providers.
Did you know that three out of five older Americans who experience hearing loss do not wear hearing aids? Six out of seven middle-aged Americans who have hearing loss, also do not wear hearing aids.
Why Should You Take Action if You Experience Hearing Loss?
As you may already know, hearing loss is very common, and the chances of having it greatly increase as we age.
Unfortunately, most people with hearing impairment do nothing about it. It could be due to social stigma, or simply being in denial. There are negative consequences to untreated hearing loss including higher rates of cognitive decline, dementia, social isolation - which leads to depression, and a decrease in wages due to the inability to perform efficiently at your job.
If you have hearing loss, the last two years have probably highlighted the difficulties you have with communicating, staying connected to others, remaining informed, and having control over your overall well-being. Modern hearing aid technology can help with social isolation, reduce cognitive decline, and help you perform better at your job. It also helps to increase your health and safety when you are out in different environments, especially areas that you don’t regularly go to.
If you or a loved one are noticing a decline in the ability to hear, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation. Our hearing instrument specialists will patiently work with you to find the right solutions for you or your loved one.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have reported that the third leading cause of death in the U.S. is accidental injuries.
Think about that. Accidental injuries account for the third leading cause of death in this country.
The results of multiple surveys that had more than 6 million American participants, indicated that people who struggle with hearing were twice as likely to experience an accidental injury, versus someone with healthy hearing abilities.
If you combine the results of these findings - how accidental injuries are the leading cause of death and hearing loss raises those risks of accidents - that’s just another of many reasons to find treatment for hearing loss.
In addition to reducing your chances of recurring incidents of accidental injuries, reconnecting with friends and family are also a good reason to treat your hearing loss.
Get in touch with one of our specialists at Pure Sound Hearing to start your journey towards better hearing and overall health.
Whether you are listening to nature sounds, the noise of laughter after a funny joke, or becoming aware of a warning signal from an emergency, hearing is a fundamental part of life.
Think about the ways that hearing, or the lack of hearing, impacts your life.
1. Be Aware of Initial Signs of Hearing Loss
The World Health Organization reports that over 466 million people have a disabling form of hearing loss. It is crucial to be aware of the first signs of hearing loss so that you can immediately seek help. Immediately getting help from a healthcare provider can potentially save your hearing. If you notice muffled sounds when others speak, trouble hearing over the phone or in a crowded area, struggle hearing women’s or children’s voices, or other family members or colleagues notice you can’t hear very well, get a hearing test.
2. Reduce Exposure to Noise
The only preventable form of hearing loss is noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL), yet it is the most prevalent form of hearing in children and adults. Make sure you wear hearing protection before being exposed to things like loud music, fireworks, or power tools. If possible, avoid these areas altogether or limit the amount of time you spend there.
Be aware that your work environment may also cause hearing loss. Your employer is responsible for providing any hearing protection - such as earplugs or industrial style ear muffs - that you may need as a result of being exposed to loud noises on the job.
3. Do Not stick anything inside Your Ear Canal
Many people have the habit of using cotton swabs in their ear canal. It’s a dangerous habit that can injure your ears.
Inserting anything into your ear canal, like cotton swabs, actually pushes the earwax deeper into your ear canal. This can cause impacted earwax. If you must remove excess earwax, wipe it off of your ears with a warm soft cloth after your shower or bath. You may also soften the wax using ear drops, warm olive oil, water, or a commercial solution. It is not advised to use any of these if you have a perforated eardrum. If you are noticing any pain, hearing loss, or blockage, please contact us for an evaluation.
4. To Hear Healthy, Eat Healthy
A proper diet and exercise are not only beneficial to hearing health, but also to your overall health.
Fruits, vegetables, and legumes should be incorporated into a well-balanced diet. To help with the steady flow of inner ear fluid, eat potassium-rich foods like bananas. Consume other foods that are rich in vitamins A, C, and E, and minerals such as folate, magnesium, and zinc.
Take a look at these articles for more advice on what to eat to improve your hearing:
Which Vitamins and Minerals May Help Stop Hearing Loss?
What Seasonal Autumn Foods can Improve Your Hearing Health?
5. Get Your Hearing Tested on a Regular Basis
Just like your other annual health check-ups, hearing health should be tested every year. Getting regular check-ups on your hearing can help catch any potential issues that you may have. Noticing problems early can help avert more serious situations in the future.
Get in touch with us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation with one of our hearing instrument specialists. We offer a number of hearing aids that can be programmed and tailored for your specific listening needs.
We’ve discussed the effects of caffeine on hearing health in this blog.
Caffeine itself doesn’t appear to have any negative impact on hearing health. But it’s the lack of sleep that caffeine causes which can negatively impact your hearing health, and overall health. Your safest bet is to drink it early in the morning and never after noontime or later.
What is Caffeine?
Caffeine is a stimulant that is naturally found in coffee beans, tea leaves, and cocoa beans. It’s also added to many energy drinks, common cold and allergy medications, and pain relievers. It helps to stimulate your central nervous system, which helps with blood circulation and the ability to concentrate. It also helps us stay alert after a poor night’s rest. Some studies have even suggested that caffeine might lower the risks of certain types of cancer (liver, mouth, and throat), along with type 2 diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, and stroke.
The impact of Caffeine on Hearing Health
Overall, the average consumption of caffeine (2 cups per day, or less) does not have a serious long-term influence on your hearing health. Blood vessels do become constricted and there is a change in blood pressure levels when caffeine is consumed. Remember, healthy blood flow is important for your hearing health and your overall health. A South Korean study determined there was no connection. They actually found that their test subjects who drank coffee had lower rates of hearing loss compared to those who did not drink coffee.
Caffeine has been shown to possibly exacerbate temporary hearing loss after noise exposure.
Have you ever left a very noisy environment and noticed your hearing abilities were different or muffled? You probably experienced something called, temporary threshold shift (TTS). This indicates that the hair cells found in your inner ears have been exhausted. Remember listening fatigue? Under normal circumstances, your hearing should return to normal in a few days, or sooner. Cutting down, or completely cutting out caffeine until your hearing goes back to normal may help.
Cancer patients should be careful.
If you, or a loved one, are a cancer patient who takes the drug cisplatin, be careful about taking it with caffeine. Cisplatin can cause hearing loss and tinnitus in chemotherapy patients. This is known as cisplatin-induced hearing loss. A study from 2019 showed lab rats that were given caffeine raised the risks of hearing loss. The researchers concluded that there was a possible drug interaction between caffeine and cisplatin for ototoxicity. They suggested that cancer patients should be careful with their caffeine consumption when taking cisplatin.
Caffeine consumption and Tinnitus
According to research, there’s no need to completely stop consuming caffeine if you experience tinnitus. Some patients with tinnitus have reported improvement in their symptoms when they cut down on their caffeine consumption. Official research has not shown that cutting back will lower tinnitus symptoms. One study found lower rates of tinnitus for women who consumed a lot of coffee.
A similar study found that completely abstaining from caffeine was not an effective method of treating tinnitus. The symptoms of withdrawal from caffeine may actually induce distress.
Ménière's disease and its association with Caffeine
Anyone who has Ménière's disease may have been advised to reduce their alcohol, caffeine, and sodium intake to reduce their symptoms. Changes in diet can be beneficial for some people, particularly low sodium diets. There’s still little proof on this subject, especially for caffeine and alcohol consumption.
There is some evidence that caffeine and alcohol consumption can lead to constricted blood vessels - known as vasoconstriction. When the blood vessels become constricted, the blood flow to the ear reduces, which can worsen symptoms. A change in diet is the easier and cheaper option.
But the evidence is not overwhelming. Yes, a simple change in diet is helpful but also getting more effective treatments, like using hearing aids, can reduce the progressive impact of hearing loss.
So remember, if you enjoy coffee, soda, or energy drinks and are in a healthy state, the latest research suggests that you don’t have to stop consuming them (perhaps a limit on them can be beneficial). You can monitor your hearing health and overall health when consuming caffeine and see how you feel when reducing your caffeine intake. Again, only drink it in the morning and not in the afternoon or evening. This will make it very difficult to fall asleep and have a restful night, which can affect your hearing health.
If you or a loved one experiences hearing loss, tinnitus, or Ménière's disease, please get in touch with us at Pure Sound Hearing for a hearing test and consultation.
Hearing loss not only affects the person who has it, but it also affects anyone with whom they interact, how they walk, increases risks of falling, and raises the risks of dementia.
In a study that was conducted by a research team from Johns Hopkins, they found that even mild hearing loss doubled the risk for dementia. Those with moderate hearing loss are three times more likely to develop dementia and those with severe hearing loss are five times at risk of developing dementia.
Hearing and Overall Health
Results of brain scans from participants in the study showed that hearing loss might contribute to higher rates of brain atrophy. Individuals with hearing loss tend to become more isolated, which contributes to anxiety, depression, and dementia. When you’re not hearing at your best, avoiding others, or less participation in conversations happens more often. All of these elements can lead to dementia.
As you navigate through different environments, your ears harness subtle cues that support your balance. The inability to hear these vital signals can lead to imbalance and falls. Your brain also struggles just to process sound. This can lead to listening fatigue. This subliminal multitasking may interfere with how your brain controls your ability to safely walk.
Causes and Symptoms
Hearing loss can be caused by:
Experiencing difficulty with hearing soft or high-pitched sounds is the first sign of damaged stereocilia - the fragile hair cells that transmit sound waves to electrical signals in the ear.
Soft sounds are conversations that take place over the phone or background noises in busy settings like a restaurant. Examples of high-pitched sounds include children’s voices and some women’s voices. Tinnitus is also a sign of possible hearing loss.
4 Myths about Hearing Aids that Stop Some from Using Them
There are no drawbacks to wearing hearing aids if you experience difficulty with hearing. They are beneficial to most individuals who use them. Being able to engage with friends, family members, colleagues, and other acquaintances can make a huge difference in a person’s life. It just takes time and patience.
People of all ages have some range of hearing loss, but few people use them. Different factors such as affordability, flat-out denial of having hearing problems, the stigma that some people still associate with wearing hearing aids, or any other personal reason, may prevent people who need hearing aids from getting them.
Myth #1: My hearing loss isn’t too bad
The average hearing aid user waits 10 years before seeking guidance for their hearing problems. It is during this timespan when communication with others becomes challenging, and there are higher risks of isolation which impacts overall health. Advocate for your health.
Myth #2: Hearing aids are for old people
People of all ages, from newborns to senior citizens, have hearing loss and some of them also wear hearing aids. Some people want to hide their hearing loss because they think it’s proof that they are aging. Having a hearing loss might seem like a sign of weakness or incompetence, but it’s actually all about figuring out the best way to communicate that works for you. That could include wearing hearing aids, using an assistive listening device, using a voice-to-text/caption app, using sign language, or any other method of communication. Staying connected to others helps your brain stay healthy and less isolated.
Myth #3: Hearing aids don’t look cool
First of all, these days, just about everyone has something in their ear. It could be earbuds, air pods, or hearing aids. No one thinks twice if they see something in your ear, or even notice that there’s something in your ear.
Hearing aids are available in many sizes and styles from completely-in-canal (CIC) to behind-the-ear (BTE). Proper fittings by a hearing instrument specialist can ensure no whistling sounds and a comfortable experience while wearing them. Whether you're looking for hearing aids that are discreet or a pair that is visible and colorful, we’ve got you covered at Pure Sound Hearing.
Myth #4: Hearing aids are complicated to use
With proper guidance and a trial period, adjusting to hearing aids can be a smooth transition. Trying out hearing aids is important before making a final choice. Our hearing instrument specialists will help you through this stage of adjustment. Hearing aid demonstrations, training, and guidance with the right pair of hearing aids are all necessary for an optimal listening experience.
If you need a hearing test and consultation for hearing aids, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Think about the sound of birds chirping, the siren alarms from an emergency vehicle, listening to a funny joke (and hopefully the laughter that follows), or your favorite music.
These are the sounds that make us aware of our surroundings and allow us to enjoy simple pleasures in life.
The ability to hear is important. Here are five tips for better hearing.
1. Recognize the signs. According to the World Health Organization, over 466 million children and adults across the globe have a debilitating form of hearing impairment. Nearly every type of hearing loss can be treated. First, it’s important to recognize the signs. Do you hear muffled sounds when others speak? Do you have trouble hearing someone over the phone or if you’re in a crowded area and someone is standing/sitting within arms-length of you? Is it difficult to hear women or children’s voices? Do family members complain that your TV, movie, or music is too loud?
Family members will usually recognize hearing loss in their loved ones first.
If you are experiencing any of these signs, get in touch with us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
2. Reduce your exposure to noise. Noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) is the only preventable form of hearing loss. It impacts people of all ages, and it’s on the rise as one of the leading causes of hearing loss. Whether you are at a concert, watching fireworks, using power tools/vacuum cleaners, or working in a construction zone, limit your time in those loud environments when possible and wear proper hearing protection.
3. Do not use cotton swabs. It’s common to insert cotton swabs into your ear, but it is dangerous. Pushing the swab too far can damage your eardrum. If you are using them to clean, here’s news for you: the swabs are actually pushing earwax (cerumen) further into your ear canal, which can cause the earwax to become impacted. Remove excess cerumen by rubbing a soft, warm cloth on your ears after showering or soften the wax with drops of warm olive oil, water, or over-the-counter ear drops. These should only be used if you don’t have a perforated eardrum.
4. Follow a healthy diet with regular exercise. A proper diet is not only beneficial for your hearing, but also for your overall health. Fruits, vegetables, and legumes that are rich in vitamins A, C, E, and minerals like folate, magnesium, and zinc should be incorporated into your diet.
5. Get your hearing tested annually. Hearing tests are rarely conducted during routine physical exams with your primary care doctor. Other pressing matters tend to take up more time during your appointment. If your hearing health is an urgent concern, you may be referred to a hearing healthcare professional.
At Pure Sound Hearing, we offer free hearing tests and consultations. Contact us today.
Do you often hear sounds that you find extremely annoying, but others don’t seem bothered by them? You may be experiencing hypersensitivity to sounds. This is a common symptom of bipolar disorder.
What causes sensitivity to noise?
The medical term for noise sensitivity, A.K.A. noise intolerance, is hyperacusis. It originates from a complication in how the central auditory area of the brain’s processing center recognizes sounds.
Subsequently, noises that may not appear loud to the average person can sound overwhelming to someone with hypersensitive hearing. For example, the scratching noise from a pencil or a running faucet could sound as annoying as a busy construction zone. Noises with high frequencies might be particularly irritating.
Generally, hyperacusis could be caused by noise-induced sounds, certain medications, and occasionally by medical conditions. There have been no formal connections to bipolar disorder, but it has been linked to depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), severe fatigue, and migraines. (Migraines have frequently been associated with bipolar disorder.)
According to Stockholm University’s Stress Research Institute, stress and emotional exhaustion have been linked to hearing issues. A study by the university found that women who experienced chronic emotional exhaustion were particularly vulnerable to hyperacusis that was caused by stress. After test subjects were briefly exposed to a physical, mental, or social stressor, those women heard the sound level of normal conversations as uncomfortably loud.
Misophonia is another type of sensitivity to sound. Those who experience this have “selective sound sensitivity syndrome”. This is when someone strongly dislikes a sound or a collection of sounds. They might display a very strong reaction (anxiety or even violent rage) that’s provoked by something as little as a pencil tapping on a desk, chewing sounds, or the sound of someone breathing.
Bipolar Disorder and Noise Sensitivity
Informal studies have suggested that a substantial number of patients who have bipolar disorder, also have a nearly painful response to noise, specifically occurring during a mood episode - such as mania. There isn’t enough research to confirm this.
According to Michael E. Thase, MD, who is a professor of psychiatry and director of the mood and anxiety program at the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine, amidst an episode of mania, there are some areas of the brain that are activated and obtain more blood flow while glucose burns off.
As a result, senses are enhanced. Colors look brighter and these patients feel more intelligent. There’s an intensity and openness to experiences, which can include more sensitivity to hearing sounds. Concurrently, there’s a nearly opposite experience that happens with depression.
When these senses become revamped during hypomanic and manic phases, patients adapt and are more aware of ambient noise.
Depression can be a Symptom of Noise Sensitivity
During episodes of deep depression, noises may become painful.
Some patients don’t enjoy music while in a depressed state. While in a manic phase volume levels from music can feel like there’s a loud concert playing in their head, or another person’s music that’s playing can be distracting or even irritating. Bipolar disorder is common among people with this problem.
The Pain that comes with Noise Sensitivity
Being in a poor mental state can lead to sounds becoming torturous.
It’s not simply an annoying feeling, but rather a stinging, intrinsic, and exasperating feeling that’s painful.
You can ask yourself if the noises that you hear are purposely being made to aggravate you, if those who are making the noises are only having fun or if they are unintentionally making those noises as a consequence of their daily routine. If the answer is that it’s unintentional - which is generally the case - this can make them more tolerable.
Prevent Triggering Noises
Annoying sounds may not be the only things that trigger your sensitivity. Even enjoyable sounds like concerts or chatter from family members can get aggravating after a while.
Limiting the number of concerts or attending performances at smaller venues can be helpful because the fewer people there are, the less noise there will be.
Dining out can be irritating at times. Choosing to be seated in a quieter area or going during less busy times can make your outing more enjoyable. Maybe even getting take-out to bring home would be easier, since you can control your environment for the most part. Hearing aids can help filter out distracting background noise, so that you can focus on the conversations that are important to you.
How to Practice Self-care for Noise Sensitivity
After you get into the routine of being able to recognize your noise triggers and doing your best to decrease them, set aside time to be in silence by reading, meditating, or doing any other simple activity.
By avoiding triggers and practicing self-care, you can feel more balanced with fewer episodes of being too depressed or too hyperactive.
If you or a loved one are experiencing difficulty with hearing, maybe hearing aids would be a solution. Please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Poisoning from carbon monoxide (CO) can induce hearing loss and brain damage. This type of hearing loss is known as sensorineural hearing loss, meaning damage occurs in the cochlea or vestibular nerve.
CO exposure causes hair cells in the ear to die off and intensifies symptoms of noise-induced hearing loss.
Make sure your home, apartment complex, and place of business have a carbon monoxide detector.
There is currently no way to restore damaged inner ear hair cells, but treatment with hearing aids can be beneficial if there is any loss of hearing.
If you or a loved one experience hearing loss for any reason, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
According to the Journal of Clinical Medicine, elderly adults who experience hearing loss and have used hearing aids for at least 18 months expressed significant improvements in their overall well-being.
In a study on adults between the ages of 62-82, those with hearing loss were professionally fitted with hearing aids. After using the hearing aids for 18 months, these participants reported their overall quality of life noticeably improved.
So don’t just take it from these people. Find out what they were able to experience by contacting us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation. Our hearing aid providers will go over your hearing test results and recommend the best hearing aid solutions for your specific listening needs.
Today’s hearing aids feature advanced technology, that does a better job at processing sound. Bluetooth® connectivity is featured in every modern hearing aid, allowing users to stream phone calls, music, TV, movies, etc.
The People Who Need Them are not Purchasing Them
According to hearing aid industry surveys, just 34% of Americans who need a hearing aid actually wear them. In the UK this applies to 41% of the population who need a hearing aid. This can be easily solved by providing access to this technology.
Of those who are aware of their hearing loss, and have not sought treatment:
Of those who do not wear hearing aids, but have been recommended hearing aids by a professional:
There is Value in keeping a Healthy Functioning Mind, Body, and Spirit
The value that hearing aids provide should outweigh the cost. Hearing aids can help you become social again. Hearing on a regular basis helps with brain function. An active mind can help you improve your performance in school or at your job. Communication is important in every aspect of your life. This includes hearing and discussing important information with various healthcare professionals, colleagues, classmates, family, and friends.
Isolation, which can lead to depression, is common among people with hearing loss that goes untreated.
Hearing Aids are Almost like any other Type of Technology
Face it, you know that you can’t live in our modern world without smartphones or computers. It’s how we communicate with one another. The same idea applies to hearing aids. If you have trouble hearing and do not have hearing aids or an assistive listening device, it’s extremely difficult to live your life.
The average patient does not know how to set up their hearing aids, which is dangerous and renders the devices useless to them. They can over-amplify, which leads to worsened hearing health.
A skilled hearing instrument specialist is trained to set up the software for your hearing aids. They can also help with proper fittings and programming for your specific hearing needs.
If you are experiencing hearing loss, get in touch with us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation. We offer discount hearing aids, professional fittings, programming, assistive listening devices, hearing aid cleanings, hearing aid accessories, supplies, and professional advice for your hearing aid needs.
We’ve got some tips on which seasonal foods that can be beneficial to your hearing health, and overall health. If you live in Lancaster County, PA, you’re in luck to have the immediate option of getting these fruits and vegetables straight from the farm.
Pumpkins and winter squash
These gourds aren’t just great for decorations, they also provide healthy nutrients for your body.
Vitamin A: Supports the immune system. Pumpkins have 200% of the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of vitamin A. Having a well-maintained immune system assists in preventing infectious bacteria - including those that induce ear infections. Most people easily recover from ear infections, but they could cause pain and temporary hearing loss.
Vitamin C: This antioxidant defends your body against free radicals. Free radicals invade your body to find electrons to pair with, which can damage DNA, cells, and proteins. Vitamin C and other antioxidants serve to prevent the invasion by protecting the inner ear’s cellular structure.
Folate: This has vitamin B, which helps with cellular metabolism, the nervous system, and vascular function. All of these features are important for proper auditory function. High-frequency hearing loss may be connected to insufficient levels of folic acid.
If you don’t like pumpkin pie or are trying to reduce your sugar intake, try adding pumpkins to a low sugar smoothie (Don’t forget to wear earplugs while using a blender.), cream cheese spread, ice cream, or pasta sauce.
Winter squash may be too difficult to cut through, so try softening the squash in a steam basket over boiling water. Maybe there are pre-cut cubes of butternut squash at your local grocery store.
Apples are Abundant this Season
How can you go this whole season without taking a bite of a fresh or baked apple? They are full of vitamin C with nearly zero sodium, fat, or cholesterol. Apples are great for the cardiovascular system and can lower the risks of asthma, cancer, heart disease, and stroke.
Vitamin A and Vitamin C: Just like in pumpkins, these vitamins help maintain your immune system and supply antioxidants that protect your inner ear from free radicals.
Potassium: This mineral regulates the amount of fluid in your body. This is vital for fluid in your inner ear, which relies on an abundant supply of potassium in order to translate what you hear into a sound that is interpreted by your brain.
The best way to eat them is fresh and uncooked. They make an easy portable snack. Most of the apple’s nutrients are found right underneath the skin, so eat them unpeeled.
Dark leafy greens
Dark, leafy green vegetables contain a lot of folates, vitamin A, and vitamin C. They easily grow in a home garden and are bountiful at farmer’s markets, restaurants, and the produce section in grocery stores.
Arugula: This green can be used as a garnish, or in a salad, sandwich, omelet, pizza, or pasta. It adds a peppery taste to your meals. It also has the same vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals as other leafy greens that aid with protecting your hearing.
In addition to eating these seasonal autumn foods, follow a balanced diet and get regular exercise. Avoid excessive alcohol consumption. Don’t ignore your hearing health. Get a hearing test from a professional. Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
New hearing aid technology can be vital in combating the loneliness that many older adults face, especially under current circumstances.
Risk Factors of Hearing Loss
Loneliness is a sense of being alone, while feeling as though there is nobody to confide in. This is unhealthy for both the mind and body. Loneliness raises the risks of cancer, dementia, depression, diabetes, heart disease, and strokes.
Another significant risk is hearing loss. Studies have shown that people who are 65 and older are five times more likely to experience hearing loss than anyone who is under 65.
Measuring Physical and Mental Health
Over the years, the hearing aid industry has been consistently working to reinvent hearing aids and highlighting the link between hearing loss and other health issues. AI (artificial intelligence) can utilize sensors in a hearing aid, combined with machine learning. This solution allows users to record their physical activity (step counts, distance walked) each day.
They can also record factors related to social engagement, such as whether the user was talking to other people while wearing them or in other listening situations. The social engagement factor is important because it helps to promote being active with others.
If you, or a loved one, are interested in a free hearing aid trial, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
We are continuing our coverage on diabetes and hearing loss.
Your levels of blood sugar, whether they are too high or too low, can harm your hearing health. Here is some advice on how to help prevent hearing loss if you are a diabetic.
There are many causes for hearing loss, such as natural aging or over-exposure to loud noises. Diabetes is another potential factor in hearing loss. Monitoring and controlling your blood sugar levels is a crucial part of taking care of your diabetes. This can also help preserve your hearing.
Diabetes and Hearing Loss
Nerve damage can occur due to diabetes. This can affect your entire body from your feet to your ears.
As time progresses, small blood vessels and nerves found in the inner ear can deteriorate from high levels of glucose that enter your blood. If you have low blood sugar, it can negatively impact how nerve signals are transferred from your inner ear to your brain. Hearing loss can occur as a result of both of these types of nerve damage.
Individuals with diabetes are twice as likely to have hearing loss than people of the same age group who do not have diabetes. People who have prediabetes (blood sugar levels that are higher than average, but not high enough to be considered type 2 diabetes) are 30% more likely to experience hearing loss than individuals with normal blood sugar levels.
How do I know if I Have Hearing Loss?
As frequently mentioned in this blog, hearing loss happens gradually over time. It may be undetected by the person affected. Friends, family, and colleagues usually notice your hearing loss before you do.
Protect Your Hearing by Protecting Your Ears
Hearing loss cannot be cured, but here’s a guide on how you can protect your hearing health:
Hearing loss can negatively affect your relationships and interactions with family, friends, colleagues, healthcare providers, and other professionals. Hearing health is just one out of several reasons why taking care of your blood sugar levels needs to be a priority. You can also feel better and have more energy by doing it!
If you or a loved one notice hearing loss for any reason, please get in touch with one of our hearing instrument specialists who will help you towards a journey of better hearing and overall health.
Your day-to-day routines, which include maintaining good oral health and keeping your household in order, are linked to a lower risk of dementia. These daily activities affect you in one way or another, so it’s important to take care of your brain health.
Regular trips to the dentist, in addition to brushing and flossing, will help to prevent harmful bacteria from building up and possibly contributing to poor cognitive health. The uneven distribution of good and bad bacteria could cause gum disease, which has been associated with cognitive decline in older adults. You can help to prevent this by regularly brushing twice a day, and making oral hygiene a priority.
Clean House and Exercise
Keeping your house clean is also important for your overall health. Doing daily chores, such as cooking, laundry, vacuuming, or yard work will get you moving. You are exercising at the same time, so it’s great to get your workout and chores done in one go. A clean house is always nice to look at, and it reduces the stress and anxiety that a cluttered home may cause.
Exercise is important for people of all ages. It can help reduce the risks of dementia in older adults. Even some physical activity is better than not doing anything. A walk outside or using a muscle-strengthening exercise can help your overall health.
Another great way to reduce your risks for dementia is to socialize on a regular basis. Socializing requires communication and listening. So, if you are having trouble with clearly communicating and hearing maybe you need a hearing test and hearing aids. We also provide assistive listening devices and demonstrations for live transcribing/caption apps. Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing to schedule an appointment.
Receiving hearing aids in the early stages of hearing loss may help reduce the risks of dementia.
Statistics on Dementia
As the aging population increases, the common health problems that are found in elderly patients such as falls caused by balance issues and dementia, are on the rise. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there are approximately 50 million people who live with dementia. They are predicting that this number will triple in 2050.
There is a way to curb this issue. The Lancet Commission on Dementia Prevention, Intervention, and Care reported that treating risk factors may help delay or prevent 40 percent of dementia cases.
12 Risk Factors that may help Delay or Prevent Dementia include:
The Journal of the American Geriatrics Society published a study that showed hearing aid usage in adults who were 50 years of age or older, helped reduce cognitive decline. They also determined that wearing hearing aids at the earliest stages of hearing loss might curb the rise of dementia around the world.
Take care of your health and aging. Yearly hearing tests are recommended for everyone. If you are experiencing any hearing loss contact us at Pure Sound Hearing to schedule a complimentary hearing test and consultation with one of our hearing instrument specialists.
According to the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, wearing hearing aids has been linked to a delay in the onset of Alzheimer’s disease, anxiety, dementia, and depression caused by social isolation.
The ability to hear allows you to stay connected with family and friends. Conversations, enjoying music or movies together, and laughing at jokes are just some of the important aspects of a fulfilling life.
A number of health issues have been associated with hearing loss that goes untreated, including cognitive decline, more risk of being hospitalized, depression, and falls due to balance problems.
The various combinations of bad health conditions that are associated with untreated hearing loss can be helped by seeking guidance from a hearing aid provider. Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.