It’s Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month. What does that have to do with hearing health?
You Hear with Your Brain, not with Your Ears
Did you know that hearing health and brain function are intertwined? Arthur Wingfield, Ph.D., of Brandeis University, is a Professor of Neuroscience who found that people who have untreated hearing loss have problems with remembering and processing that information. It gets harder and harder for a person’s brain to process information when they have hearing loss. This includes comprehending quick and complex speech.
A Decline in Brain Health and Alzheimer’s Disease
Poor hearing abilities lead to poor brain function. Untreated hearing loss negatively impacts a person’s ability to accurately hear sounds and their cognitive function.
It’s not simply the inability to hear, but it’s also not being able to think, remember, or process information quickly or efficiently.
Alzheimer’s and dementia can impact the mind, personal relationships, and how you function as a human being. The disease can become progressive.
Get Your Hearing Tested
Receiving a hearing test is an easy way to protect the connection between your brain and your ears. It’s a simple way to keep track of your hearing health so that you can intervene and slow down the process.
Get in touch with us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
National Senior Health and Fitness Day is celebrated annually on the last Wednesday of May. This year it is being recognized on May 25th. This day promotes the betterment of health for seniors. The overall objective is to help seniors maintain fitness and health routines. A number of organizations across the country create events to raise awareness about the significance of eldercare and suggestions on how to accomplish it in a productive way.
National Senior Health and Fitness Day is celebrated as part of the Older Americans Month activities. It is the biggest health and wellness campaign for American seniors.
It’s important to look for a variety of selections when it comes to physical activities that seniors can participate in, and highlight the values of good nutrition and exercise to prevent poor health. Healthy diets improve energy and immunity. Whether it's a an easy walk outdoors or more rigorous workout routine, exercising on a regular basis retains bone mass while reducing the risks of fractures along with other diseases or conditions.
In the U.S., assisted-living facilities provide transitional care for the elderly who do not need to be in a nursing home but can no longer live independently.
More than 1,200 locations which include health clubs, health departments, hospitals, retirement communities recreation centers, and senior centers celebrate National Senior Health and Fitness Day. Local organizations for health and seniors coordinate, sponsor, and host events. Popular programs like health fairs, group exercises, walking tours, and more are implemented at these events.
Here’s how you can observe National Senior Health and Fitness Day.
1. Spend some time with the elderly people in your life. Make them feel special and loved.
2. Host an event. Set up an event in your neighborhood or through an online event for seniors. Discuss the importance of good health and spread the message on social media with the hashtags #SeniorHealthDay, #SeniorHealthAndFitnessDay, and #NationalSeniorHealthAndFitnessDay. You can add more localized hashtags based on the area where you live.
3. Volunteer. Raise awareness by volunteering at health fairs or working with local non-profits to send emails about offering to help the elderly in your community.
Hearing health has a direct impact on your overall health and the ability to accomplish fitness routines. Being able to hear important directions from healthcare professionals or follow instructions during a fitness routine is vital to making progress in your overall health and wellness.
If you or a loved one are experiencing difficulties with hearing, improve your health by getting your hearing tested, and sign up for a free hearing aid trial at Pure Sound Hearing.
Tinnitus levels can vary each day for different reasons. Sometimes it’s a physiological condition within your body, your surrounding environment, or the type of tinnitus management that you practice. We’ll go over some factors that can affect the sounds of this phantom noise.
Stressors can Affect the Volume of Tinnitus
Stress is one of the primary agents of tinnitus. Tinnitus symptoms may become bothersome during a stressful moment in life, or when we’re having a stressful day.
When there’s a significant shift in life, whether it’s at home or with your job, stress lets the body react and respond mentally, emotionally, and physically. Prolonged periods of stress can lead to an imbalance which can trigger louder tinnitus on some days over other days.
Common causes of stress can include life-altering circumstances such as grieving a loved one or losing a job. A steady flow of stress that is caused by ordinary circumstances such as deadlines for work, or caring for loved ones, can worsen tinnitus symptoms. Living through these situations can make your tinnitus sound louder on some days and quieter on other days.
Conditions caused by stress are also associated with tinnitus and make the phantom noise worse. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and tinnitus have comparable structures and can bring attention to one another.
Taming Internal Stressors
Even though external stress can impact the perceived loudness of your tinnitus, the way you manage the stress (a.k.a. internal stress) is just as important. If your body is not sufficient or healthy enough to deal with external stress, tinnitus symptoms can get worse.
In order to better manage stress, you need proper nutrition, exercise, and an adquent amount of sleep that’s consistent.
Your Diet’s Influence on Stress
It’s easy to ignore the persistent messages from experts encouraging you to eat healthily, but it’s one of the crucial elements to lowering your stress levels and keeping them down in order to better manage your tinnitus.
Processed foods should be left out of your diet, as consuming them makes it harder to manage stress. These foods are often high in sugar. If there’s too much change in your blood sugar levels, the sympathetic area of the nervous system becomes stimulated. This is the area of the brain that handles our fight or flight and makes us ready to react. When this occurs, stress hormones are released which can lead to symptoms of stress. These could include anxiety, irritability, nervousness, and interruptions in sleep patterns, which can be common while experiencing symptoms of tinnitus.
A healthy and well-balanced diet also lets us replace nutrients and vitamins, which may be expended during stressful moments. For example, vitamins B complex, iron, magnesium, and zinc can help aid with stress.
Tinnitus can seem worse after consuming caffeine, alcohol, or smoking cigarettes. These tend to raise your adrenaline. It doesn’t need to be a permanent change, but it’s helpful to let your body get used to this new diet to see if it has any impact on your symptoms.
Sleepless Nights and Stress
Sleep is VERY crucial in keeping a healthy body and mind. Less sleep = more stress and louder symptoms of tinnitus.
A good night’s rest allows you to better handle stress. Giving your body a chance to recover and rest is important to properly manage stress. Poor rest can affect your mood, memory, and judgment.
Exercise to Manage Stress
Struggling to manage your stress, can make tinnitus worse. And tinnitus itself can be stressful. It’s a vicious cycle. This can trigger the sympathetic part of our autonomic nervous system. That indicates that there are more stress hormones moving throughout the body like adrenaline, cortisol, and noradrenaline.
Try to lower these hormones by engaging in a relaxing exercise, like yoga. The more relaxed you feel the quieter tinnitus symptoms can be.
Quiet Environments and Tinnitus
Tinnitus can seem louder because of your surroundings. If your environment is too quiet, tinnitus will be more noticeable.
Lower noise levels in the background that are meant to mask tinnitus can actually make the symptoms seem louder.
Also, silence can activate a response to stress in the body which increases internal auditory sensitivity. Your hearing can become more perceptive while getting yourself ready for a possible threat. This form of hearing can make internal noises, like tinnitus, louder.
Going from a loud environment to a quieter area can make it seem like the tinnitus has gotten worse. Give yourself time to adjust. This might involve rubbing our ears, doing breathing exercises, and practicing mindfulness when we respond to symptoms of tinnitus.
Focus your attention on something else, meditate with music in the background, use a sound machine, or if you are also noticing difficulty with hearing in addition to tinnitus, try hearing aids. Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a free hearing test and hearing trial.
Hearing loss should be taken more seriously by the general population, primary healthcare providers, and of course those in the field of hearing healthcare.
There are a number of consequences to one’s mental and physical health when hearing loss goes unaddressed. Rates of depression, falls caused by imbalance, emergency room visits, and cognitive problems can arise as a result of untreated hearing loss. All of these interconnections have been studied in a general sense and have been covered in our blog.
Dr. Frank Lin from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health is one of the leading researchers of hearing loss in the world. His team focuses on hearing loss and its effect on the brain as we age.
Dr. Lin’s thorough research recommends what we’ve discussed before: getting treatment immediately will greatly improve your overall health, and make it easier to manage. If hearing aids are recommended, understand that it takes time for your brain to adapt to the technology.
The Lancet Commission’s study suggested that hearing loss that is treated between the ages of 40 and 64, is one of 12 risk factors that you can alleviate to help prevent or slow down dementia or Alzheimer’s. So look into seeking treatment right now if you notice any hearing loss, and are concerned about cognitive health as you age.
For a free hearing test and consultation, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing.
Seniors are at a higher risk of a number of health problems. It’s important to take care of your overall health and make better decisions about your diet, exercise routines, and lifestyle. This can help you better manage any potential health problems that stand in the way.
Hearing and vision loss are two of the most prevalent health conditions that seniors experience. More than 42% of individuals over 50 years of age have some hearing loss, and about 71% of individuals over 70 years of age have some range of hearing loss.
There are a lot of preventative measures, treatments, and daily habits to help you live a healthier life, even with presbycusis (age-related hearing loss). With knowledge and ways to manage health concerns, you can help your condition from getting worse.
Taking precautions now can make a huge difference. Listening to music or media at a low volume can help lower your risks of hearing loss. If you are in a noisy environment for an extensive period of time, wear earbuds or, if possible, move yourself to a quieter space. Wear earbuds when using loud tools or any motor-powered devices.
With age-related hearing loss, you may notice tinnitus, you may struggle to keep up with conversations, or have memory issues. Built-up earwax can obstruct sounds and should be softened and removed by a professional, not by inserting cotton swabs in the ear canal.
Diabetics should be attentive when taking care of their blood sugar. A healthy weight can help reduce the chances of hearing loss, along with regular exercise and eating healthily.
Immediately seek help if you begin to notice hearing loss.
Alleviating the Symptoms of Hearing Loss
To help manage your hearing loss, hearing aids can, and should, be worn. Hearing loss can deteriorate brain function because the brain is not reacting to sounds like it used to. Listening is a brain exercise that needs to be worked out on a regular basis.
Managing your hearing loss also means that you need to communicate your needs to family, friends, and coworkers so that they can better understand your situation and adapt accordingly. Maybe you’ll need to tell them to face you in a well-lit room when they speak, or they need to talk louder in certain situations. Communicating these things will help a great deal. Those with hearing loss may need to be patient with them, as they work through this new normal with you. Make a plan.
If you, or a loved one, are experiencing problems with hearing, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Hearing loss crosses all age groups. We’ve gone over hearing loss among older adults, and the risks associated with hearing loss as you age.
It’s important to raise awareness that more and more young adults are experiencing hearing loss for a number of different reasons. Young adults who have hearing loss face a unique set of challenges as they go through college, dating, employment, growing relationships, and parenting.
How prevalent is Hearing Loss in Young Adults?
According to the CDC, around 12% of adults between the ages of 18-39 report struggling with following along during conversations when there is too much background noise. Nearly 6% have tinnitus. These numbers are higher in older age groups.
People who have hearing loss are more likely to experience low rates of employment, lower work productivity, and higher healthcare costs compared to their peers.
Causes of Hearing Loss for Young Adults
Noise exposure is one of the most widespread causes of hearing loss for young adults, as well as older adults. This can lead to noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL). Across the U.S. millions of Gen Xers, millennials, and Gen Y have been exposed to hazardous levels of noise, including hobbies like woodworking, music, city noises, and workplace environments.
Additional risk factors include diabetes, high blood pressure, taking ototoxic medications, viruses, bacterial infections, genetics, or they were born with it.
Young Adults with Otosclerosis
Otosclerosis is one of the other most common medical causes of hearing loss in people of this age group and middle-aged adults. This is when there is abnormal bone growth in the middle ear section. Nearly 3 million Americans are affected by it - the people with the highest risk being middle-aged women.
The Affect of Hearing Loss on Young Adults
The different causes of hearing loss for young adults differ greatly from the older generation but wearing hearing aids when you are in your 20s, 30s, or 40s can look and feel different than wearing them when you are older. Occupation, family, relationships, and activities are - for the most part - different than older people.
Working with hearing loss, while NOT impossible, can be tricky at times. People in their 20s are fresh out of college and looking for their first job. They have the choice of when they should inform their potential employer that they wear hearing aids. Depending on where your job path takes you, you may need special equipment - like a telephone with amplification or captions. Your employer is required by law, via the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), to accommodate you for your hearing needs. You can apply for any job that you want, but there are some careers that may be easier to navigate through if you have hearing loss. Take a look at our article “Careers for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing”.
Working Remotely with Hearing Loss
If you have hearing loss, depending on the job, working from home can have its ups and downs. You can raise the volume on your computer as much as you want, without bothering coworkers. The technology for virtual meetings doesn’t always work smoothly, so it can hamper communication. Read up on some tips on how to prepare for video conferences or virtual meetings.
Parents or Guardians Raising Children and Young Adults
Taking care of a child as a hearing aid user has its challenges. Hearing aids are needed for better communication and safety, but using them requires consideration from those who are communicating with the hearing aid users. A parent may need a baby monitor that flashes, vibrates, and has a video monitor. Making sure your hearing aids are always in good condition is also important, especially if there’s a sudden emergency.
Attending College or Higher Education
Another concern that differs among generations is that young adults are deciding whether to attend college or higher education. People in this age group might not receive the support that is needed to thrive in school. Young adults may be learning how to be their own advocates for the first time.
Hearing Aids can help You Maintain or even Raise Your Income and Improve Overall Health
The ability to hear in a work environment can impact your household income, which is a common concern for people who are in their prime age of employment. According to a survey that was done through Better Hearing Institute 40,000 households in the U.S. indicated that using hearing aids and assistive listening devices was beneficial to one’s earning potential. There was also a 90 to 100 percent reduced risk of income loss for anyone with mild hearing loss, and a 65 to 77 percent reduced risk for anyone with moderate to severe hearing loss.
Hearing aid usage has a more obvious asset to mental health for younger people. A study from 2014 indicated that hearing loss is linked to depression in adults of every age, but it's more common in young adults. Even though hearing aids help people of all ages, younger users appear to gain the most out of them when it comes to depression. Socializing leads to a healthy overall quality of life.
Hearing Aid usage is becoming Less Stigmatized
In regards to hearing aid usage, there are major distinctions between the older generation and the younger generation. Most people of the younger generation are more accepting of wearing hearing aids. Today, just about everyone wears something in their ears, whether they are earbuds, headphones, or hearing aids; therefore hearing devices draw less attention. The stigma of hearing aid usage is dwindling and the younger generation is noticing that their untreated hearing loss is more noticeable than the hearing aids themselves.
If you are a young adult or middle-aged with hearing loss, you have the chance to seek treatment and engage in practices that protect and slow down the hearing abilities that you still have.
For a complimentary hearing test and consultation, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing to set up an appointment.
A Study on Women's Exercise Routines and Hearing Health
Analysts from Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, MA reviewed 20 years of female nurses’ health records. They examined whether body mass index (BMI), the circumference of their waist, and physical activity had any relation to hearing loss.
The authors of this study were aware of the adverse repercussions of hearing loss that went untreated, observing how communication and social skills can impact a person’s psychosocial well-being and overall quality of life. They strived to determine lifestyle factors that could be changed by the test subjects so that they may lower their chances of hearing loss.
Conclusions on the Study
The study found that female nurses with higher BMI and larger waist circumferences were linked to a higher risk of hearing loss. There was a reduced risk of hearing loss if the test subjects engaged in regular exercise - these included walking, aerobics, swimming, and other less intense exercises.
They also found walks that lasted at least 2 hours each week, lower the risk of hearing loss.
If you’re working up the motivation to increase your exercise routine, add hearing health to that list.
Are you, or a loved one, experiencing hearing loss? Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
If you have osteoporosis, there’s a chance that you may also experience hearing loss. These comorbidities are often related to one another.
A study from 2021, concluded that the risk of hearing loss for women who had a low bone density, or osteoporosis, was 40 percent higher than for those without low bone density.
Bisphosphonate, an osteoporosis drug, did not appear to reduce any risks of hearing loss. More research is needed for a conclusive answer.
Osteoporosis happens as a result of bone breaking down at a faster rate than it can be replaced by the body. This leads to higher risks of bone fractures. It can happen to anyone, but it is most common in Asian and white women.
One of the most prevalent chronic conditions that impact older adults is, hearing loss. The main risk factor, and only preventable type of hearing loss, is exposure to noise. When this gets paired with aging, it exponentially raises the risks. Additional health problems, like anemia, diabetes, and heart disease can create even more risks. But these aren’t the only causes of hearing loss.
What is the Connection between Osteoporosis and Hearing Loss?
The actual relationship is still being determined for certain, but they are suggesting that tiny bones in the ears lose their minerals and weaken. These bones are vital for your hearing system. Osteoporosis may also negatively impact the bones that support the nerve structures used for hearing. These are found in the cochlea.
Low bone density, osteoporosis, or a medical history of fractures could lead to higher risks of hearing loss. Regular hearing tests are important, especially when there’s an onset of hearing loss. Most hearing loss is so gradual that you don’t notice it. It may seem like everyone is mumbling. Hearing tests and immediate treatment is crucial to preserving your residual hearing.
Sudden Hearing Loss
According to the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, it’s unlikely, but sudden hearing loss can be common in patients with low bone density and osteoporosis.
Sudden hearing loss normally occurs in one ear and tends to happen all at the same time or within a few days. Nearly all sudden-onset hearing loss is “idiopathic”, which means that the cause is unknown. For the few numbers of cases where a cause is found, the connection to osteoporosis is a meaningful discovery.
Hypotheses about the onset of sudden hearing loss include a relationship with cardiovascular or cerebrovascular systems along with bone demineralization, inflammation, and endothelial dysfunction (issues involving blood vessel linings).
Osteoporosis and Balance
Some people with hearing loss also tend to have balance issues. This can lead to falls, bone fractures, and even death.
Prevent falls by wearing hearing aids, and if needed prescription eyeglasses or contact lenses, assistive listening devices, keeping up with an active lifestyle, and making sure there are safety measures in place where you live.
What should You lookout for if You Have Osteoporosis?
Pay close attention to your hearing health and your bone health. If your healthcare provider does not take that correlation seriously, advocate for yourself and make your concerns known.
If you or a loved one are experiencing hearing loss for any reason, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Spring is here! If you have a green thumb and your own garden, maybe you’ll be interested in planting homegrown produce that supports healthy hearing. If you’re a local Lancastrian, did you know that our county has the most productive non-irrigated farming in the entire country? Why not try some of the bountiful produce that our county has to offer while improving your hearing health?
It takes time and patience to grow asparagus. The first harvest might take a few years, but it will be worth it! Asparagus is a great source of folate, which is great for hearing health. Folate has been found to possibly lower the risk of hearing loss in elderly men.
Blueberries are delicious on their own, in a smoothie, in pie, or scattered over pancakes. They are full of vitamin C, which when combined with magnesium and vitamins A and E, can help treat worsening symptoms of noise-induced hearing loss.
Kale is great on its own, or as an addition to lasagna, salads, or soups. This leafy green also has folate.
If you plant pumpkin seeds around late May, the pumpkins should be ready for harvesting by the summer or fall season. Fresh pumpkin seeds are a great source of zinc, which helps the immune system - and taking a medicated oral form may help treat symptoms of tinnitus.
Tomatoes are vine-grown fruit that is rich in potassium - which helps regulate blood and tissue fluids. This includes fluid in the inner ear, which is crucial for hearing health and balance.
If you’re trying to eat healthier for your ears, and/or overall health, try to incorporate these foods into your diet. Another way to improve your hearing health is by getting your hearing tested on a regular basis. Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation at one of our office locations in Elizabethtown, Lititz, or Strasburg.
We’re raising awareness about potential hearing loss caused by loud noises. The inablity to hear can affect your speaking abilities. Not being able to hear after many years can impact your ability to remember the way speech sounds.
Better Hearing and Speech Month (BHSM) started in 1927. Every May, hearing health and speech issues are given a platform to remind people to take care of their hearing health and get it tested.
Identifying and intervening immediately when hearing loss is suspected is crucial for a better outcome. Most people live with hearing loss, but are often unaware that there’s a problem. Getting your hearing checked annually, or if you suspect you have hearing loss is crucial for proper care and treatment.
The first World Report on Hearing from the World Health Organization
Hearing Health Facts
On average, a person is born with nearly 16,000 hair cells in their inner ear. These cells pick up sounds and transfer them to the brain so that they can be interpreted into something that makes sense. Often, when people notice hearing loss that indicates that most of the hair cells are damaged. Between 30% to 50% of hair cells can be lost before a difference in your hearing can be measured through a hearing test. Once the hair cells in the inner ear are damaged, it’s permanent and they cannot regrow.
Noise not only harms hair cells but also damages auditory nerves that transfer information regarding sounds to the brain. Early stages of damage may not appear on your hearing test results.
There is no way to restore hearing that’s been lost. Preventative measures are the key. Wear earplugs or earmuffs if you are going to be in a loud environment or use loud tools. If you already have hearing loss, tinnitus, or experience pain/discomfort, be aware of your surroundings and protect your hearing so that it does not worsen.
For better hearing and communication, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Every May, Better Hearing & Speech Month (BHSM) gives everyone who has hearing and speech difficulties and those who regularly interact with anyone who has hearing and speech challenges a chance to raise awareness about communication disorders.
The theme for this year is “Connecting People.”
Hearing loss is experienced by about five percent of the world’s population. Five percent of this population also has problems with speech.
Communication is a crucial part of our daily lives. BHSM raises awareness about the obstacles that those with hearing loss or speech challenges have with it.
We’ll go over a brief history of Better Hearing and Speech Month.
In 1927 BHSM was founded by the Federation of Organizations for the Hard of Hearing as part of National Hearing Week. In 1958, the event eventually became Better Hearing Month and then evolved into Better Hearing and Speech Month in 1972.
Previous themes for Better Hearing and Speech Month included: “Communication for All”, “Communication Across the Lifespan”, and “Communication at Work”.
Easy Ways to Observe Better Hearing and Speech Month
Spread the word by sharing a link to this article. Our blog also has a lot of helpful information.
If you, or a loved one, are experiencing hearing loss and need a free hearing test, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Exposure to excessive noise is one of the top causes of hearing loss around the globe for the 466 million people who have moderate to severe hearing loss. Noise exposure can harm anyone’s hearing, but young people are especially prone to this risk due to their music listening habits. The World Health Organization (WHO) reported that approximately 1.1 billion young people between the ages of 12 and 35 are risking their hearing health as a result of noise exposure during recreational settings.
International Noise Awareness Day helps to bring attention to the fact that noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) is permanent but can be prevented by avoiding loud areas and protecting your hearing with earplugs/earmuffs or covering your ears when in contact with loud noises.
What Noise Levels are Considered to be Too Loud?
If you live in a quiet neighborhood or have a job in a quiet work environment, most of the sounds are at safe listening levels. However, there can be noises that are unsafe for your ears. Overexposure to noises from kitchen appliances, heavy traffic noises, subway trains, power tools, rock concerts, industrial work environments, or construction zones can damage your hearing.
Environmental sound intensity is measured in decibel (dBA) units. The softest sound that can be heard by a human ear is zero decibels (dB). Noises that are over 70 dB can harm your hearing over a prolonged amount of time. Loud noises that are over 120 dB can instantly harm your ears. Essentially, the louder the sounds are, the less time it takes to damage your hearing.
Many years of research have documented damage to the inner ear’s hair cells that is caused by excessive noise. Recurring pounding sounds of pressure against the nerve fibers may initially lead to temporary hearing loss, and then permanent damage. Any damage to these hair cells can cause permanent hearing loss.
Noise Exposure Raises the Risk of Tinnitus
Tinnitus - the phantom buzzing, chirping, ringing, or roaring noise in the ears or head - can be caused by exposure to loud noises. Tinnitus might ease over time, but in some cases continue as an irregular or permanent symptom.
One of the primary causes of tinnitus is noise. Some of the most common triggers of tinnitus are concerts, weddings, and receiving MRIs. In other cases, it can be caused by one very loud event or a sequence of exposures. Hearing aids or sound therapy may be recommended to mask the noise.
How NIHL Occurs
NIHL accumulates over time. Usually, people don’t notice the hearing loss until much later. By that time it’s too late the save what’s been lost. Hearing aids can help slow down the loss, but they cannot restore hearing.
With NIHL, you may begin to notice a problem with your hearing if you notice tinnitus right after the noise is heard, and/or sounds that are slightly muffled. Your ears are warning you that you have hearing loss if it’s difficult to understand others when they speak. Get your hearing tested immediately in this case.
If you start to notice noise-induced hearing loss or any other form of hearing loss, it’s a good idea to create a timeline and journal about your experiences so your hearing healthcare provider can get a better idea of what you’ve gone through.
Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
April is Stress Awareness Month, and we’re highlighting the correlation between stress and hearing loss, along with how to manage it.
Stress can be harmful to your overall health. It can lead to serious health problems such as diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, and obesity. Some tips to reduce your stress levels include regular exercise, spending time with people you love, getting an adequate amount of rest, and treatment for your hearing loss.
Anyone with hearing loss experiences daily stressors that are connected to hearing loss. It’s called listening fatigue. This is when the concentration from listening to speech, focusing on reading lips, and social cues physically and mentally exhaust you. It’s a common feeling among anyone with hearing loss, but these symptoms can be reduced by wearing hearing aids.
Stress from Tinnitus
Tinnitus is connected to stress and is usually an underlying symptom of hearing loss. People with tinnitus may experience louder and more consistent ringing sounds when feeling stressed.
A study found that 53.6 percent of patients with tinnitus reported that their symptoms worsened when they felt stressed. Another study from hearing healthcare providers revealed that nearly 60 percent of their patients had minor to significant tinnitus relief while wearing hearing aids. One out of five experienced major relief.
Stress is almost impossible to avoid, but there are techniques that can help you manage from meditation to exercise, or simply taking a moment to laugh at something.
If you or a loved one are experiencing tinnitus, hearing loss, or both please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation with one of our hearing aid providers.
We’ve discussed many work environments that can contribute to hearing loss from construction zones to gyms. Well, it should be no surprise that musicians, especially rock musicians, are also vulnerable to hearing loss. Lots of famous musicians have hearing loss, tinnitus, or both. Research suggests that they are four times more likely to have hearing problems than the general population.
1. The former Nirvana and current Foo Fighters band member, Dave Grohl, recently revealed that he has had hearing loss for years. He cannot hear out of his left ear and crowded restaurants are the worst spots for him to visit. Masks make things worse for him. He read lips for 20 years, and has to remind people that he is a rock musician, he’s deaf, and he cannot hear what others are saying.
2. Pete Townshend of The Who has been open about his hearing loss for many years. He pinpointed the problem to studio headphones, not from playing live music.
3. Another member of The Who, Roger Daltry, said that he is “very, very deaf”.
4. Danny Elfman, who scored Edward Scissorhands, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Batman Returns, The Nightmare Before Christmas, and numerous other films, lost his hearing and developed tinnitus after playing frontman in his band Oingo Boingo.
5. Alice Cooper dons hearing aids after losing his hearing from being around loud rock music for 55 years.
6. Huey Lewis talked about how hearing loss and Menière’s disease cut his singing career short and recommended hearing aids.
7. Sting admitted that he has hearing loss, but still refused to get hearing aids.
8. Mick Fleetwood revealed that he has hearing loss, and played a “quiet” rock concert to raise awareness about hearing loss. The concert took place at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with 100 people in attendance. There were mixed responses. The band Eagles of Death Metal played two songs without amps. The audience listened with miniature radio receivers. Most just smiled. Later the band played three songs that were amplified through speakers, and the crowd jumped and danced around while waving their arms. The unamplified sound reached 62 decibels (dB) - which is normal - and the amplified sound reached 124 dB, which is the same noise level of a jet engine.
Fortunately, there’s more awareness about this issue today. Musicians can even wear customized earplugs that are specially designed to wear while performing at concerts.
If you are a musician, or someone who you know is a musician, with hearing loss please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Hearing loss can be frustrating, isolating, and depressing. In addition to a better diet, routine exercise, and getting help for your hearing loss, scientific studies have proven that listening to sounds of nature can be therapeutic for all living creatures.
Heal Yourself by Hearing Elements
Stress caused by work, living in a bustling city, or everyday life can take its toll on a person. The ability to go outside to breathe in the fresh air, see verdant landscapes, and hear lush waterfalls and animals feeds your mind, body, and soul.
How Nature Sounds Effect Us
In addition to the beautiful countryside, fresh scents of nature - minus the manure, if you live in Lancaster County - one part of nature has a serious effect on humans: sound. Compare the racket from a construction zone or loud music that’s blasting, to the sounds you hear while out on a hike in the forest or by the mountains. Nature sounds are much more soothing and have been proven to impact the way a human brain functions.
Published Study on Nature Sounds Impact the Brain
According to a survey from the Brighton and Sussex Medical School that was published in “Scientific Reports” in 2017, there was evidence of the positive impact of hearing natural sounds. Dr. Cassandra Gould and her team used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) on a test group. While the participants were presented with artificial and natural sounds, their brain activity was measured with an MRI machine. The activity of the automatic nervous system was measured through a person’s shift in heart rate. The results showed that based on the sounds that each participant heard, the activity changed in their Default Mode Network, in other words, the region of the brain that remains active when a person rests.
Nature Sounds Help with Focus and Lowers Stress
When participants heard artificial sounds, the activity in their brain signified that their attention was changing inward. Noises that sound good can be a cause for concern: inward focus is also found in individuals who have clinical depression, anxiety disorders, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The participants in this study actually focused their attention outward while listening to nature sounds, which indicates that they were wide awake and focused. However, at the same time, they relaxed. The sympathetic nervous system, which controls the fight-and-flight response was at rest, whereas the parasympathetic system, which controls metabolism, recovery, and development of the body’s resources, was activated.
Appreciate Ordinary Nature Sounds
Everyone can benefit from listening to nature sounds. You don’t need to go to a secluded part of the world or go hiking outdoors every weekend. It just takes a little bit of time spent around some fresh air. If it’s nice out, your lunch break outdoors. Notice the sounds of animals, breezes, or falling rain. You’ll feel the rewards.
If you can’t go outdoors when you want to, you can listen to sounds of nature through a CD, various streaming services, and apps. The Sea Sounds will let you create your own mix of ocean sounds. Nature Sounds give you a wider selection and offer water, fields, and forest sounds. A Soft Murmur provides noises like fire, rain, wind, and white noise. Even though white noise is not from nature, it can help if you have tinnitus.
Do You Have Hearing Loss? Listen to some Natural Sounds.
People with various types of hearing loss can also find relief with natural sounds. Please be aware that not all sounds are enjoyable for each person. One person’s relaxation sounds can induce stress in others. It’s important to find what works best for you.
If you or a loved one experiences hearing loss and/or tinnitus, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
If you have hearing loss, wearing a hearing aid can help reduce the risks of dementia that are associated with poor communication and isolation.
Hearing loss that goes untreated can raise the risk of dementia by nearly 50%.
Studies have suggested that for people with hearing loss, treating hearing loss could significantly reduce the likelihood of potential cognitive problems. A recent study from the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society found that those with hearing loss, who then received hearing aids within three years of the diagnosis had reduced rates of dementia than individuals without hearing aids.
Another study from that same journal showed that hearing aids lowered the risk of cognitive decline that is linked to hearing loss.
If you are noticing hearing loss, it’s important to get treatment immediately. Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
We’ve discussed in this blog the known risks that can contribute to hearing loss. Genetic factors, being born with hearing loss, noise-induced hearing loss, diet, and what you consume are just some of them. We’re going to go over the latest studies on the impact of hearing loss on smokers.
Whether you are a smoker or are exposed to secondhand smoke, the chemicals from cigarettes can have serious consequences on your health.
A study from this past January of 2022 exposed a connection between regular smokers and hearing difficulties. This study was published in JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery, reviewed hearing loss patterns over a 30-year span that covered three groups: never/former smokers, people who quit smoking during the study, and smokers who continued smoking during the study. The smokers who never quit had poor results on their hearing tests.
Previous studies had similar patterns - the high risks affected non-smokers who live with a smoker. They were two times more likely to develop hearing loss than individuals who had no exposure. About 80 percent of the test subjects were unaware that the health of their hearing was affected.
It’s been shown that smoking is also closely related to dizziness, vertigo, and tinnitus.
Smoking’s Impact on Hearing Health
The nicotine and carbon monoxide in cigarettes reduces oxygen levels in the blood. They also constrict blood vessels throughout the body, which include the ones located in the inner ear which function to maintain the health of hair cells. Nicotine and cigarette smoke may:
Smoking and Tinnitus
Smoking may induce tinnitus, but more research is needed to verify this. There has been “sufficient evidence” that smoking is connected to tinnitus. This indicates that rates of tinnitus are higher in smokers than non-smokers, but there is no conclusive evidence of the direct cause-and-effect.
Smoking and Ear Infections
Smoking has been connected to ear infections in children and adults. The immune system becomes weaker and ravages tissues located in the nose and throat. This is what makes them more vulnerable to infections that harm the ears.
Due to the anatomy of children’s ears, they are already at a higher risk of ear infections. That risk becomes more serious when they come in contact with secondhand smoke. Secondhand smoke can cause more frequent and more severe asthma attacks, infections to the respiratory system, ear infections, and sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). There have been some instances where middle ear infections in children caused loss of hearing.
Check out our article “What is the link between Vaping and Hearing Loss?” to learn more about the impact of vaping on hearing health.
Positive Outcomes from JAMA Study
According to the aforementioned 2022 JAMA study, former smokers had better hearing test results than those who smoked regularly. This proved that quitting can benefit your hearing health and your overall health.
The American Lung Association revealed that your blood pressure decrease and your circulation gets better 20 minutes after smoking your last cigarette. In about 8 hours, the carbon monoxide and oxygen levels in your body go back to normal. In about 48 hours, your sense of smell and taste will get better, while your nerve ending starts to regenerate.
If you have hearing loss and smoke, take the steps to quit smoking for good. If you are concerned about your hearing or notice hearing loss, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Hearing loss can occur suddenly due to noise exposure or genetic diseases, or more commonly, it can happen gradually over time. In the latter case, it becomes easier to ignore the problem or outright deny that there is a problem. When the symptoms do become evident, most people perceive it as a minor inconvenience. Unfortunately, that’s the moment when anyone in this situation should seek help immediately.
Here are 8 reasons why hearing loss that goes untreated is more serious than you’d expect:
1. Hearing loss has a link to Alzheimer’s and Dementia.
According to Johns Hopkins University and the National Institute of Aging, people with hearing loss are more prone to experience Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia compared to those who have healthy hearing. You don’t simply hear through your ears. Your brain also works to interpret sound. When you are experiencing hearing loss, straining to hear can exhaust your brain. This is commonly known as “listening fatigue”. As a result, listening fatigue can - over time - also cause damage to the brain.
Hearing loss also leads to social isolation, because the person with hearing loss or those with whom they communicate, are not putting enough effort or patience into clear communication. Social isolation is a major risk for dementia.
No matter what the cause is, slowing down or preventing further hearing loss with hearing aids is one of the best ways to treat these symptoms.
2. Depression and Isolation
According to scientific research from the National Institution on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD), there has been a strong correlation between hearing problems and depression among those with hearing loss.
3. The Inability to Hear Alerts in Dangerous Situations
Ambulance and law enforcement sirens, automobile horns, and fire alarms all make noises to alert you of possible danger. Not being able to hear these sounds due to high-frequency or low-frequency hearing loss, can put you and others at higher risk of injury.
4. Poor Memory and a Decline in Mental Health
Those with hearing loss are at a 40% greater risk of a decline in cognitive function compared to those with healthy hearing. From a public health point of view, it’s important to monitor and treat cognitive decline and dementia as the population ages. Creating more awareness between hearing loss and cognitive decline is imperative. It could be you, or someone that you love and will have to take care of, who experiences this.
5. Reduced Incomes for the Household
According to a study from Better Hearing Institute, in more than 40,000 households that participated, hearing impairments had negatively impacted household income by nearly $12,000 each year, based on the range of hearing loss. Hearing aid users, however, curtailed this impact by 50%.
Being able to communicate, follow instructions, and perform tasks correctly is crucial to getting a promotion. Communication is the top job-related skill-set that is sought out by managers and the leading aspect that can get an employee promoted.
6. Atrophied Hearing and Memory Muscles
The phrase “use it or lose it” is a common phrase that we frequently hear when talking about our physical health. Regularly exercising greatly reduces the chance of having atrophied muscles. Keeping up with exercising can lead to lower powers of strength. Repeated physical activity is the only way to restore physical strength.
This same idea applies to hearing health: when our hearing wanes, we get caught up in the decline which only worsens it. This is known as auditory deprivation. A person with hearing loss can experience “hearing atrophy”.
7. Hidden Medical Problems
Even though age and over-exposure to loud noise is the most prevalent cause of hearing loss, there are some instances of hearing loss being a symptom of more severe, and hidden medical conditions. Possible illnesses may include:
Due to the gravity of these illnesses, we recommend getting a hearing test and treatment as soon as possible.
8. Higher Risk of Falls
As previously mentioned in this article, and several others, there are many connections between hearing loss, Alzheimer’s, anxiety, dementia, and depression. Falling is another serious risk when it comes to hearing loss.
Studies have indicated that anyone with 25-decibel hearing loss, which is considered mild, was nearly three times more likely to fall. For every additional10-decibels of hearing loss, the risk of falling rose by 1.4 times.
Get Your Hearing Tested
As we’ve mentioned in our blog, noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) is the only preventable form of hearing loss. The only way to void this type of hearing loss is by wearing hearing protection or covering your ears when coming in contact with loud noises. If you are noticing hearing loss caused by loud noises or any other reason, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing immediately for a free hearing test and consultation.
Hearing loss can be caused by so many different things like aging, head trauma, over-exposure to noise, genetics, or you can be born with it. These things impact the auditory nervous system, which results in sensorineural hearing loss. This is the most prevalent form of hearing loss. It happens when there’s damage to the inner ear nerves and hair cells that are caused by aging or noise damage. There is usually no medication or surgical procedure that can correct this, but hearing aids are a common form of treatment.
There is another, lesser-known type of hearing loss. This is called conductive hearing loss. This form of hearing loss impacts the outer or middle ear, unlike sensorineural hearing loss, which affects the auditory nerve. A blockage in the middle ear usually causes conductive hearing loss.
Conductive Hearing Loss Caused by Ear Infections
When the middle ear is vibrating, sounds are sent to your auditory nerve. Any blockage can hinder sounds from traveling through the middle ear and lead to hearing loss. An infection in the middle ear can lead to the build-up of fluid, restricting the vibration of the eardrum and the tiny bones connected to it.
Impacted earwax, fluid build-up in the middle ear, or a hole in the eardrum can also lead to conductive hearing loss.
The medical term for a middle ear infection is “otitis media”. This type of infection can lead to fluid build-up, and make it challenging for the eardrum and ossicular chain to cooperate and transfer sounds to the auditory nerve. The ossicular chain located in the middle ear is the three smallest bones in your body. They are called the malleus, incus, and stapes bone. Each of these bones is about the size of a single grain of rice.
Can an Ear Infection cause Hearing Loss?
When you talk about an ear infection, it typically refers to a middle ear infection or acute otitis media. This type of infection involves the area behind the eardrum where the three hearing bones (ossicles) are located. A person with this type of infection may need medical treatment, but it usually resolves itself naturally.
A mild form of conductive hearing loss can be temporary while the infection is still thriving. Permanent hearing loss is NOT usually a cause for concern. In some cases, if there are a number of long-term infections, the eardrum or middle ear can be permanently damaged and cause permanent hearing loss. Seek treatment immediately if you feel pain in your ears or sense an ear infection.
Hearing Loss Caused by Ear Infections, For the Most Part, Are Temporary
Hearing loss that is caused by an ear infection is normally temporary and goes away when it is treated. You may be given antibiotics. If they work, your hearing should revert back to normal. If you have a history of ear infections, fluid may be drained from your ears.
Getting rid of fluid buildup can bring relief to the pain and pressure that usually comes with an ear infection and can stop the eardrum from rupturing. If fluid continues to build up without any intervention, the pressure can lead to a rupture in the eardrum.
Recurring episodes of ear infections can lead to tympanosclerosis. This is when the tympanic membrane becomes thick and will scar. A perforated eardrum and tympanosclerosis can affect the eardrum’s function and worsen the ability to hear. If treatments from a primary care physician do not resolve the problem, hearing aids may be recommended.
If you, or a loved one, are experiencing hearing loss caused by an ear infection or for any other reason, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Just about everyone has been feeling burned out lately. Whether it’s from the pandemic, work-related, family-related, or all of the above, it can make you feel a little crazy.
But did you ever think that maybe your hearing loss is causing you to burn out faster than usual?
Listening Fatigue caused by Hearing Loss
Please be aware that “listening fatigue” is a real problem. Straining to hear others and read their facial expressions has been a great challenge lately for everyone, regardless of their hearing health status. Your brain interprets sound into information that makes sense to you, and that requires concentration and effort.
Imagine a moment when you were in a very busy and noisy setting, like a sports arena or a crowded restaurant. When background noises were at their peak, were you able to clearly understand what your dining companions were saying? Were you straining to hear them and the waitstaff? If the restaurant itself was very loud, did you or others give up on trying to communicate with one another? This is an example of mental strain or cognitive load, that comes with hearing loss.
With normal hearing abilities, you might only notice cognitive load in noisy areas. This straining may also be felt while struggling to hear a noise, such as a disturbance in your home or maybe the sound of an animal outdoors. These situations raise your awareness of how much energy you exert when you need to hear something or someone.
For anyone with hearing difficulties, many ordinary environments and situations involve this type of effort. If you spend too much time concentrating on hearing or when the sounds are overly complex to understand, this creates more cognitive overload.
Mental Health Disrupted by Hearing Loss
Since fatigue is closely linked to hearing loss, most people who have hearing loss tend to refrain from socializing with others or being in noisy spaces that could worsen their cognitive load. This approach has its negative effects on your hearing health, as well as your mental health. Avoiding sounds creates less work for your auditory nerves. When those nerves are inactive - like when you stop exercising your muscles, for example - they become atrophied. This can progress to higher risks of dementia. Avoiding people can lead to isolation and depression. This is why it’s crucial to stimulate the auditory nerves by socializing with others.
If you’ve been feeling exhausted, don’t simply write it off as needing more rest. It could be hearing loss. If you noticed that you need to turn up the volume on your TV or ask others to speak up more frequently, you may have hearing loss.
Getting treatment immediately is important to slow down any further hearing loss. The first step is to get your hearing tested. Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing to schedule a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
What happens during Temporary Threshold Shift (TTS)?
You have most likely experienced this after leaving a concert: the noises you hear sound muffled, you notice feelings of fullness in your ears, and you might even hear tinnitus. The tiny hair cells in your ears came in contact with very powerful sound waves. This is known as temporary threshold shift (TTS). Hearing is usually recovered in these cases, and tinnitus goes away.
If you have symptoms of clogged ears or tinnitus, this could mean that your hearing is damaged. If you have recurrent episodes of TTS, permanent hearing loss could ensue.
How does the Ear become Damaged from Loud Noise?
Loud noises, whether it’s from a concert, earbuds with high volume settings, or a work environment, can seriously damage your hearing health. To better understand this, let’s go over how hearing works.
Essentially, sound travels into the ear and then stimulates the fluid located in the inner ear (A.K.A. the cochlea). The fluid produces waves across microscopic rows of hair cells. Every single hair cell is arranged in a tonotopic (tuned) manner to a particular frequency. This provides the best transmission of the sounds you hear.
There is Damage in Your Ear’s Cells
When loud sounds come in contact with your ears, the hair cells become distressed by becoming permanently bent over. This occurs even if there’s no noise. As a result, you may notice tinnitus, feelings of fullness in the ears, and temporary hearing loss.
High sound frequencies are affected when TTS occurs. This impacts the way you hear consonant sounds. In the English language, you may not be able to hear the difference between certain words, like “car” or “far”. This is an example of being able to hear, but not understand.
When it comes to TTS, your hearing threshold will recover to normal after a brief period.
Is TTS Serious?
The answer to this question isn’t clear-cut, because it’s a short-term symptom and for some people, things may seem normal for a while.
Even if the hearing loss is temporary, it’s not an excuse to regularly attend concerts, work environments, or loud recreational activities without protecting your hearing. If you experience too many instances of TTS, it may turn into a permanent threshold shift (PTS).
If you only experience TTS once, you probably won’t have permanent damage to your hearing.
Why does TTS Happen?
Overexposure to loud noises causes TTS. Concerts are a major culprit. Being near the speakers at a concert can endanger your ears to 110 decibels (dB).
It only takes over 70 dB to induce hearing loss. TTS is a type of noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL), but its impact is fleeting.
Other circumstances that can cause TTS are exposure to loud noises, like listening to music through earbuds/headphones, fireworks or an explosion that goes off near you, a gas-powered lawnmower, or an ambulance/police car siren.
How long can TTS Last?
TTS is a temporary symptom that can last anywhere from a couple of hours, a few days, or maybe several weeks.
The longer and more intense the exposure is, the stronger and longer-lasting the TTS could be.
Other influences could make an impact, such as an individual’s age, sex, history of noise exposure, frequented environmental settings, smoking, or diabetes.
How do You know when an Area is Too Loud?
Preventative Measures for TTS
It is unlikely that TTS will occur unexpectedly. The only cause is exposure to loud noise, so avoid these loud areas or be prepared to protect yourself.
It sounds simple but in the modern world, you may encounter many unexpected situations that could be a danger to your hearing. Loud machines or movie theaters can reach anywhere between 74 to 104 dB. You can still enjoy the movies by wearing earplugs that tune out most, but not all noises.
For earplugs that cancel out almost all noises, get earplugs that feature the highest noise reduction rating (NRR). If you are going to watch a movie in the theater, you can try earplugs that are designed for musicians.
If you are noticing hearing loss and need a hearing test, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
The sale of over-the-counter (OTC) hearing aids is meant to lower the cost of hearing aids, which sounds like a good way to make sure that everyone who needs hearing aids will be able to afford them. But a salesperson who is promoting OTC hearing devices does not have the knowledge and expertise of a hearing instrument specialist. Receiving a proper fitting, professional experience, and long-term care for the devices is crucial in getting the most out of your hearing aids. Investing in a local business, like Pure Sound Hearing, ensures quality service. Here are six reasons why you should work with a hearing instrument specialist.
Hearing instrument specialists are licensed to sell hearing aids. They know the technology, are versed in proper care, repairs, and maintenance. Problems regarding feedback noise, corroded batteries, or anything else can be resolved with their help.
2. The Fit
Comfort and performance are important factors in hearing aid usage. Standard hearing aid domes or a customized hearing aid that fits the contours of your ear ensures that you are not only hearing at your best but are also wearing devices that are securely fit. A secure fitting also ensures that feedback noises (the whistling sounds) are not blaring from the hearing aids. Customized programming for the hearing aids is also done by a hearing instrument specialist. They will base the programming on your preferences, lifestyle, and the environments that you frequent.
Monitoring your progress, while making adjustments as needed can ensure that you’ll get the most out of your hearing aids. After receiving a new pair of hearing aids, you may notice discomfort, or feel like the hearing aids aren’t working. It’s important to remember this: adapting to hearing aids takes time.
3. Your Relationship with Your Provider
Hearing loss is complicated. There are many types and causes, along with comorbidities that are connected to hearing loss. It can initially be difficult to become accustomed to hearing aids. Our providers at Pure Sound will be here to guide you and answer your questions along the way.
Hearing loss and tinnitus (the constant ringing, clicking, or whistling sound) often, but not always, go hand in hand. Ongoing research is helping professionals in the hearing healthcare world understand more about it. Providing support and solutions through hearing aids can help patients make their tinnitus symptoms more manageable.
Other than receiving the best support from a hearing instrument specialist, there is evidence that programming hearing aids on your own, or selecting a one-size-fits-all device (basically an amplifier) can cause more damage to your hearing. At Pure Sound Hearing, a series of tests will be performed to assess your hearing loss and make sure that the hearing aids provided will be tailored for your range of hearing loss. Too much amplification can do more damage to your hearing, and a poorly-fit hearing aid can lead to earwax build-up.
6. Hearing Aids are an Investment
Even though OTC hearing aids may save you money at first, over time, the poor quality of the technology and services (or lack thereof) will become evident. A hearing instrument specialist will provide warranty protection, professional hearing aid cleanings, advice on upgrades, and any advice you need on hearing aid care and maintenance.
If you or a loved one are experiencing hearing loss, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
How Can Art Therapy Help Patients with Chronic Conditions like Hearing Loss and Other Comorbidities?
Anyone with hearing loss can relay instances of anxiety-induced episodes that were caused by their inability to hear or clearly communicate with others. Sometimes it can feel like you’re in the eye of a hurricane. It’s important to always remember to slow down and breathe. Hearing loss is the third most common chronic physical condition in the U.S.
Art therapy can be healing for all chronic conditions.
What is Art Therapy?
The American Art Therapy Association describes art therapy as “an integrative mental health and human services profession that enriches the lives of individuals, families, and communities through active art-making, creative process, applied psychological theory, and human experience within a psychotherapeutic relationship.”
Patients should focus more on the process of getting to a healthier mental state, rather than the result.
Art therapy can happen in so many forms including dancing, drawing, music/singing, cooking, knitting, painting, sculpting, meditation, writing, and any other creative outlet that you can think of. No previous artistic experience is necessary, but the devotion towards exploring your creative side can be helpful when selecting how you want to interpret your inspiration.
The Benefits of Art for Chronic Conditions in Patients
There are so many complexities when it comes to a patient’s physical and mental health. Taking care of chronic conditions for a lifetime will take its toll. Anxiety, depression, isolation, and mental health can worsen the physical symptoms of these health issues.
Various studies that were reviewed by the American Journal of Public Health indicate that art therapy helps patients manage their chronic conditions, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), chronic pain, cancer, and other chronic illnesses for extended periods of time. This includes:
The great thing about art therapy is that anyone can be creative. It is crucial for each individual to find the proper medium, which takes time and experimentation with various mediums.
If you have hearing loss and want to improve your life with art therapy that includes music and listening, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Hearing Loss: Injuries connected to Falls among the Elderly are Physically, Mentally, and Financially Harmful.
Hearing loss has been proven to increase the risks of falls. Hearing loss takes a toll on how much energy the brain uses. As a result, the cognitive overload of information that the brain attempts to interpret impacts the ability to pay attention to other people or things for an extensive period of time. The inability to pay attention can easily lead to fatigue, confusion, and falls - which can lead to hospitalizations or death.
If you are an older adult or care for someone who is elderly, you are well aware of how frightening and common falls are.
For anyone who experiences hearing loss, wearing hearing aids can reduce the risk of falling.
Not only are falls dangerous and have costly treatment, but they can take away your life of independence and cause worry among your loved ones who care for you.
Reduce your risks of falls and become more independent with the use of hearing aids. Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
If you’ve recently been informed that you have hearing loss - or if your hearing loss has deteriorated - you might be feeling anxious.
Anxiety is an unrelenting and intense state of alertness. It’s normal to feel anxious when you encounter stressful situations but in some cases, it becomes unmanageable to the point where it’s a disorder that needs professional help.
Hearing loss may induce or worsen feelings of anxiousness, but the connection between these two symptoms has not been fully researched. Anxiety and overthinking things may not always focus on hearing, but that can sometimes make its way into the thoughts that a person is having.
The Worries that may come with Hearing Loss
Once hearing loss gets worse and you actually worry about it, some thoughts could come to mind:
Anxiety in Physical Form
Physical symptoms can be triggered as a result of anxiety. This includes:
You might feel more vulnerable because you can’t hear or think you’re hearing other sounds. If these thoughts and physical sensations continue, interrupt your daily life, and your quality of life, you should probably see a professional to treat your hearing loss and another professional to treat your anxiety.
Where is the Anxiety coming From?
Anxiety can be designated into five categories: obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), social anxiety disorder (SAD), panic disorder, and generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). If you suffered a head injury, you may experience hearing loss and symptoms of PTSD.
Patients with hearing loss may also have symptoms of tinnitus or vertigo, which can also induce anxiety.
Do You Have Social Anxiety or are You feeling Discouraged from the Inability to Hear?
Presbycusis (age-related hearing loss), occurs gradually over time. You may subconsciously experience presbycusis but insist that it’s for another reason besides hearing loss.
Sadness and loneliness can slowly increase as well, and lead to anxiety.
Those who have social anxiety are fearful of situations where they feel judged.
Hearing loss can be frustrating, not just for the person with hearing loss, but also for people with whom you are communicating. Not being able to hear clearly can lead you to miss the social cues that indicate when someone is going to talk or has not finished talking. Faking the ability to hear is common for someone with hearing loss. Maybe you missed a joke or an important medical recommendation. Hearing loss can make you feel out of place or lead to other serious health issues.
It's important to find a way to manage anxiety in a way that works for you. Here are some suggestions that you can try out.
New Means of Communication
If you have trouble in crowded social gatherings, take the person or people that you want to talk to into a quiet space. You can even use talk-to-text apps, which transcribe what people are saying.
Hearing aids can be helpful, but it’s important to remember that adapting to the hearing aids takes time, and hearing aids only help keep the hearing that you still have and slows down loss.
If you or a loved one are tired of feeling anxiety and loneliness due to hearing loss, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.