Do You have High-Frequency Hearing Loss? Discover the Symptoms, Preventative Measures, and Treatment Options.
You may not think that you have any form of hearing loss. It’s usually subtle, except in severe cases. You may have hearing loss and not realize it, especially if it’s in the high-frequency range.
There are two different frequencies: high-frequency and low-frequency.
A person with high-frequency hearing loss has trouble hearing sounds between 2000-8000 Hz. Some examples of these sounds include birds chirping, children’s voices, and high-pitched instruments like flutes or violins.
A person with low-frequency hearing loss has trouble hearing 2000 Hz or lower sounds. Some noise examples include a large dog’s bark or low-pitched instruments like the tuba. Hearing loss in low-frequencies is also known as reverse-slope hearing loss.
Causes of High-Frequency Hearing Loss
High-frequency hearing loss is common among people with loss of hearing. The causes of this particular hearing loss include:
Symptoms of High-Frequency Hearing Loss
One of both ears can be affected by high-frequency hearing loss. The range of severity is as different as the symptoms. Some may not notice it, while others see a significant change.
Here are the most common signs to observe:
Are There Preventative Measures to Avoid High-Frequency Hearing Loss?
Like noise-induced hearing loss, the only way to prevent high-frequency hearing loss is by avoiding loud settings and wearing proper hearing protection when necessary. If you cannot hear someone speaking to you within arm’s length, this means your environment is too loud. Aging and genetic factors can also cause high-frequency hearing loss, making it unavoidable for some people.
Treatment Options for High-Frequency Hearing Loss
A pure tone screening test determines whether you or a loved one have high-frequency hearing loss. The test will have a range of various frequencies played for the patient to listen to and identify. Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and pure tone screening. There is no cure for high-frequency hearing loss, but a hearing aid can help manage your symptoms. Our specialists at Pure Sound Hearing will be able to guide you through your treatment options and recommend hearing aids if necessary.
What can You do to Improve Your Hearing?
There are sounds all around us, in every environment, and from the people who communicate with us. Think of the sounds that you can’t miss. Perhaps it’s the sound of a loved one’s voice, your favorite music, or critical instructions from a medical provider. Think about the people you want to reconnect with and the special moments by incorporating these tips into your journey towards better hearing.
Obesity is related to hearing loss. The heart must work harder to circulate blood throughout the body, including your ears. Simply walking or practicing a more rigorous exercise routine can help with your overall health, which impacts your hearing health.
Take Advantage of the Technology
Concerns about alerting systems when you have difficulty with hearing are common among people with hearing loss. Modern technology can transform your doorbells, smoke alarms, and timers into flashing lights or vibrations. Smartphones may stream audio straight to your hearing aids while providing captioned videos or flash visual alerts for incoming calls. Hearing aids can also translate other languages through a captioning app.
The Loop System
Throughout the U.S., most public spaces, such as museums and theaters, have a hearing loop built into their venues. This allows your hearing aid devices to wirelessly connect through the t-coil setting in your hearing aid. Participating sites should feature a hearing loop logo on the building.
Protect Your Hearing
About 466 million people around the world have hearing loss. This includes 34 million children. The primary and only preventable cause of hearing loss is noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL). So if you are at a loud concert, watching live fireworks go off, riding a snowmobile, or using loud power tools, limit your exposure by wearing hearing protection or taking breaks in between these boisterous spaces.
Do you have difficulty hearing during a conversation over the phone? You might be approved for a landline phone that displays captions as the person speaks on the other line. In some participating states, this telephone is free if a qualified hearing care provider certifies that you have hearing loss and would benefit from using the phone. The caption call phone also works with hearing aids. You just need a standard phone line and connection to the internet. Users can add captions to their smartphones and tablet.
Get a Hearing Test
Making a hearing test is simple. Why not schedule one for the entire household? Adults should get their hearing tested annually or more often if they notice something wrong with their hearing. Early detection is key to early intervention, which can help significantly in the long run. Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Many people experience tinnitus. It’s a symptom of an underlying disease. Making a few modifications to your lifestyle can help make your symptoms more manageable.
Things You Can Change to Manage Tinnitus
If your tinnitus becomes triggered due to stress, finding ways to manage your stress should be a priority. Symptoms of tinnitus can worsen from stress. Yoga and other exercises can help alleviate these symptoms. Check out some other easy and effective techniques to manage stress from these articles:
Soothe Your Stress by Listening to Nature
How Can Art Therapy Help Patients with Chronic Conditions like Hearing Loss and Other Comorbidities?
Additional Treatment Options for Tinnitus
If you are looking for other treatments, maybe try:
If you or a loved one are experiencing tinnitus and would like to try hearing aids as a treatment option, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Do some spaces make it difficult to hear others? Whether it’s a noisy restaurant with bare walls and floors that can’t absorb sounds or your own home, which can feature spacious areas, how sound travels from room to room can be unpleasant for the ears.
Making some minor changes to your decoration can alter sound clarity and quality.
If you are in a grand dining area with wooden floors, unadorned walls, and full, curtain-less windows - sounds will ricochet from these hard surfaces. As a result, what a person says will be heard with an echo.
An echo alters how clear a person’s speaking voice sounds. When there are more things in a room - drapes over windows, rugs, carpeted floors/walls, tablecloths on a table - the sound becomes trapped and absorbs into soft surfaces instead of rebounding.
The acoustics in a room can significantly impact a person’s ability to communicate effectively, no matter how well they can hear.
There are so many simple ways to improve the acoustics in a space.
Modern Design Trends Have Not Been Made with Hearing Problems in Mind
What people enjoy looking at isn’t always great for the ears.
Contemporary homes with open layouts intended for entertaining, no drapes or carpeted floors, minimalist designs, and vaulted ceilings can be harsh on hearing.
If you or someone you live with has hearing loss, more drapes, furniture, and carpeting would be beneficial to absorb sounds throughout the home.
Some materials, like fuzzy, soft, and textured items, absorb sounds. Other materials like brick, glass, and tiled surfaces reflect sound.
Controlling noises in the bathrooms, kitchen, and laundry room is challenging.
These rooms typically do not feature material that absorbs sounds.
Bathroom: tiled floors and walls are a prominent feature in bathrooms. When the shower runs or a toilet flushes, the combination of tiles and these noises can obstruct hearing.
Kitchen: tiled floors, walls, and other hard surfaces, plus steel appliances, will not absorb noises. The dishwasher, garbage disposal, kitchen hood vent, and various appliances create a lot of noise.
Laundry room: these rooms store large appliances (washer and dryer) made with a smooth, hard surface.
Knowing which areas of the home or other spaces may be distracting for someone with hearing problems should be considered if a conversation will take place.
6 Easy Ways to Improve Acoustics at Home
You don’t need to gut and remodel the entire house. If you happen to be redesigning your home from the ground up, avoid an open concept and design the space while considering your hearing. Here are simple, inexpensive tips to enhance the acoustics in your home.
1. Install carpeting to the home.
Carpeting throughout the house can make a huge difference. If it’s not in your budget or you don’t like having carpet throughout your home, use throw rugs instead. Be careful if you are prone to falls, as you may trip over them. You may secure the sides with tape and place a rubber backing underneath. The rubber backing can also help absorb sounds.
2. Use door sweeps.
Door sweeps will block windy drafts and reduce sounds from noisy rooms.
3. Place more furniture in the rooms. Use padded options.
More furniture reduces the echo and ricocheting noises. Large pieces that feature padding will help absorb noises.
4. Incorporate fabric.
Place tablecloths on all of your tables. Use heavy drapes that absorb noise for the windows. Even simple things like lining drawers in the kitchen can muffle the clinking of silverware. Bumper pads can be attached to drawers, tables, and doors.
5. Hang art on the walls.
Art on the walls works like curtains and wall tapestries. They double as being aesthetically pleasing while stifling the acoustics.
6. Put up dividers in the room.
These pieces absorb sound and create the illusion of making large spaces feel smaller.
Reduce Background Noise When You Can.
Turning down the volume or turning off devices that make excessive noise can be beneficial during a conversation - whether in person or on a video call.
It’s more challenging to hear consonant sounds when there’s background noise.
Get Advice from Your Hearing Aid Provider.
While going through your hearing aid trial period and programming for your hearing aids, let your hearing instrument specialist know which listening situations are difficult. Whether it’s a specific space or it’s due to a noisy environment, your hearing aid provider can program optimal settings so you can hear in any condition.
Although hearing loss symptoms vary from each person and situation, they generally include:
It's time to get your hearing professionally tested if you are experiencing one or more of the listed symptoms. A hearing aid instrument specialist will be able to serve your needs.
A total hearing evaluation
A professional hearing aid specialist will evaluate your hearing history to see if you have a loss and, if so, to what degree and nature.
What’s next if you have hearing loss
Your hearing aid instrument specialist will gather the results from all the information. The nature and degree of hearing loss will be addressed. The cause of your hearing loss and its effects on your life will determine treatment recommendations. The hearing aid instrument specialist may only have to remove ear wax or debris from your ears so that you can hear better. Or, there may be fluid in the inner ear or some other medical cause for surgery. But hearing aids will generally be the best form of treatment.
Recognize your hearing loss, and then seek treatment. Get an evaluation if you have the symptoms of hearing loss. You can contact one of our hearing aid instrument specialists at Pure Sound Hearing Aids for a consultation.
Hearing is a crucial sense to moderate and care for throughout your lifetime. When searching for hearing aids, finding the right style, fit, and programmed settings to accommodate your lifestyle and listening needs should be your priority. Hearing aids are an investment, so finding the right provider to guide you through your new hearing journey is also a factor to examine.
Hearing Aids are Medical Devices
Hearing aids are medical devices that you wear on your ears. Precise and proper tuning for your specific listening needs is necessary to get the most out of your devices. You will need to take multiple trips to your hearing instrument specialist as you adapt to the hearing aids. Your specialist is responsible for finely tuning the hearing aids so you can hear at optimal levels in any environment. Making sure that the hearing aids fit securely and comfortably should be a priority. Our hearing instrument specialists at Pure Sound Hearing are experts in the field who keep up with their training.
Exceptional services are one of the essential qualities to think about when selecting a hearing aid provider. Pure Sound ensures quality service. Our specialists will patiently work with you to provide everything from routine cleanings to any mishaps you may encounter with your hearing aids. Usually, hearing aids from big box stores cannot be taken for services at your local hearing aid stores, but at Pure Sound, we offer to service any hearing aids, no matter where you purchased them. Besides the hearing test and consultation, there will be a fee for any other services we provide.
Invest in Your Hearing
Hearing aids are an investment, so don’t let prices shy you away from taking care of your hearing health. At Pure Sound, we offer quality hearing aids, quality service, and a 30-day money-back guarantee. Find out which insurance providers we accept. Contact us for a complimentary hearing test and consultation!
Listening to and enjoying music has been a favorite way of passing the time or enjoying while working around the house, exercising, during celebrations, at a concert, etc. It evokes emotional feelings while having important personal and social values.
Have you ever wondered how music and memory are interrelated? How about the way music affects our minds? Do people who experience dementia benefit from listening to music? What happens to a dementia patient’s brain when they hear certain music?
In some cases, individuals who have dementia cannot verbally communicate clearly as the disease progresses. Northwestern Medicine teamed up with the Institute for Therapy through the Arts (ITA) and studied how a connection can form using a new music intervention.
They had developed a program called “Musical Bridges to Memory” - live musicians perform for the patient. The music repertoire consists of songs from the patient’s youth. For instance, songs from “Oklahoma” or “The Sound of Music” would be performed. The patient and their caregiver(s) usually feel an emotional connection that lets them sing, dance, or play musical instruments together.
The program helped patients improve their social skills and decreased their neuropsychiatric symptoms like agitation, anxiety, and depression for patients and their caregivers.
Over 6 million Americans have Alzheimer’s disease.
This study is unique because it doesn’t just focus on the patients. It also observed the patient’s caregivers.
Memories of Music can Stay with a Patient while other Memories Fade.
Music was able to bridge a connection that could not be made verbally. Family and friends of patients with dementia are also impacted by this. When they are unable to connect with loved ones through language, music can help rekindle that bond.
Music memories are usually retained in a person’s brain, even when language and other memories fade with dementia. The areas of the brain that retain musical memory and processing are not as deeply impacted by Alzheimer’s or dementia until the disease is in more advanced stages. Therefore, patients can still sing or dance along even if they can no longer speak clearly and coherently.
Musicians Perform for Patients
A 45-minute musical intervention, music and songs that the patients enjoyed in their youth were performed. The patients and their caregivers were given instruments to play along with the music. Trained music therapists encouraged the patients to beat drums, dance, and sing.
Afterward, they engaged in a group conversation. Patients became more social. They made more eye contact, were less confused, calmer, and in better spirits. The control group, which did not receive musical intervention and continued with their routine care, did not exhibit these changes.
The program had 12 sessions within a three-month period.
Prior to the intervention, some patients wouldn’t talk or interact with their partners. During the intervention, they began playing, singing, and dancing together, which was a momentous change that the family was able to witness. These changes also occurred in everyday moments, outside of sessions.
As the program continued, multiple family members were invited to join. They were able to normalize the experience for everyone in the family. Everyone could interact with their loved one, no matter what level of dementia they had.
Are you experiencing hearing loss? Do you or a loved one miss listening to music that you enjoyed? Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation. Our hearing aid providers will help you select hearing aids that are appropriate for your hearing loss.
This year, March Madness starts on Tuesday, March 14, 2023, and ends on Monday, Apr 3, 2023. With basketball season gearing up, we want to raise awareness about attending live sporting events and hearing health. Whether you plan to attend a live game in the arena, from the comfort of your home, or with friends and family at a bar, make sure you take care of your hearing.
Did you score tickets to see the game live?
Lucky you! Before you go, make sure you bring some earplugs. Sports reporters have measured noise levels at an NBA game that reached 109 decibels (dB). Remember, 70 dB is the new threshold for hearing loss. Anything over that number can be dangerous. Check the concession stand to find out if they sell earplugs.
The level of noise at sports bars can be just as loud. Professionals in the hearing health industry attended popular sports bars during the playoff seasons and measured these noise levels. The average decibels can reach up to 70 dB - similar to a vacuum cleaner. When there was a pivotal moment during the game, the noises went up to 110 dB - equivalent to a jackhammer. It is customary for construction workers to wear hearing protection when operating this tool.
In 2014, fans from Kansas City made noises that reached 142.2 dB. It set a new Guinness World Record. That is louder than a jet plane. An extensive amount of exposure can lead to physical pain and do serious harm to your ears.
Protect Your Hearing
Instead of skipping out on the fun, here are some tips to protect yourself:
If you, or a loved one, are experiencing hearing loss, please contact Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Is it Time for a Hearing Test?
In most cases, hearing loss isn’t as easy to notice as any other symptoms - but that doesn’t make it less urgent to seek treatment.
1. Do you find it easy to hear but difficult to understand what others are saying? Does it sound like they are mumbling or talking too quietly?
2. Group conversations may be hard to keep up with, especially if there’s background noise.
3. Do you often ask others to repeat themselves? It might be a sign of hearing loss.
4. Have other people outright said that you have problems with hearing?
5. Do you rely on your spouse or a close family member/friend to help fill in the parts you missed during the conversation?
6. Do you crank up the TV or your music so loud that others ask you to turn it down?
7. Do you have trouble with conversations over the phone or during video calls?
If you said “yes” to any of these scenarios schedule a hearing test with Pure Sound Hearing.
A hearing test can be conducted by a licensed hearing healthcare professional. The test is painless, and the person who performs the test determines whether you have hearing loss. Sometimes it might be impacted earwax.
If you do have hearing loss, and hearing aids would be beneficial to you, your hearing healthcare provider may also be able to provide and program your hearing aids for you. Everyone’s hearing loss is unique, so calibrating your specific hearing needs in a programmable setting is necessary to get the most out of your hearing aids.
Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation with one of our hearing aid providers.
Do You Need Better Hearing Aids?
Is it time for you to get better hearing aids? Do you need an upgrade? If you’ve been thinking about it, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing to get a free hearing aid trial.
Hearing aids with clarity and quality performance is now better than ever. Audibility and speech understanding, as well as a comfortable fit, can also be addressed. The technology is so good you can even understand the subtle tone of someone’s voice.
But there may be other reasons why you need to change your hearing aids. Your hearing ability may have changed--it may have gotten worse. Or, you may have had a change in lifestyle, such as in your work, where you need to be involved in conference calls or team projects. Maybe you are enjoying retirement or attend more appointments for your health and need to hear important information? Wireless technology addresses various listening needs using automated programming for different settings. They’ll even reprogram on their own for specific environments you frequent, for example, offices, restaurants, or entertainment venues.
Schedule a complimentary hearing test and consultation with one of our hearing aid providers by getting in touch with us at Pure Sound Hearing.
Hearing Loss, Aging, and Loneliness.
A 2012 New York Times article stated that loneliness is harmful at any age. It tends to hurt older adults more because it can lead to early death or loss of physical functioning, like bathing, getting up, dressing, and eating. The article outlined a six-year study on people aged 60 and older. Seniors who weren’t lonely were more likely to live longer than the ones who were.
What is the link between Hearing Loss and Loneliness?
Because humans are social creatures, it is not hard to see why loneliness affects your health negatively. With hearing loss, people often withdraw from social interaction out of frustration with the inability to keep up with conversations. But since loneliness is subjective (like living alone and feeling okay about it) and is not the same as social isolation, which is objective (you either maintain social interactions or you don’t), you have to look at the objective side. You can surround yourself with people and still feel lonely. But one often leads to the other--social isolation often leads to loneliness.
Hearing aids as a buffer against Loneliness.
A 2016 study found hearing aids are a buffer against loneliness because it improves relationships. It’s easier to communicate with others. There’s less frustration and more confidence. Hearing exercises your brain, reducing or slowing down the onset of dementia. There were positive effects on physical and mental health.
If you are having trouble hearing and feel lonely, hearing aids could help. Please contact one of our hearing instrument specialists at Pure Sound Hearing.
You can experience noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) from one encounter with a loud noise (like a roaring fire alarm). When sounds are too loud, it doesn’t take very long for hearing loss to follow. The longer a person is exposed to the noise, the more risk there is of hearing loss. It’s especially true if you don’t wear protection for your hearing or if there’s no break in between the exposures.
Here are some examples of loud noises to which you may be vulnerable.
Power Tools and Miscellaneous
Typical Sources of Noise and Decibel Levels
Decibels (dB) are the unit of measurement of sound. A soft voice is approximately 30 dB, a conversation in a normal tone is about 60 dB, and the running engine on a motorcycle is about 95 dB. Noise that surpasses 70 dB for an extensive amount of time could begin to harm your hearing. Any noise over 120 dB can instantly damage your hearing abilities.
Here are some examples of everyday noises and their decibel levels.
These sounds generally do not cause hearing loss:
The softest sound heard by humans: 0 dB
Normal breathing: 10 dB
The ticking noise from a watch: 20 dB
Whispers: 30 dB
Refrigerator hum: 40 dB
Normal conversation, air conditioner: 60 dB
Washing machine and dishwasher: 70 dB - may cause a mild disturbance.
City traffic (while inside a vehicle): 80-85 dB - may cause more disturbance.
The following sounds can cause hearing loss:
Gas-powered lawnmower/leaf blowers: 80-85 dB - may damage hearing after a 2-hour exposure.
Motorcycle: 95 dB - may damage hearing after a 50-minute exposure.
Oncoming subway, train, or car horn within 16 feet, and crowded sports arena: 100 dB - may damage hearing after 15 minutes.
The highest volume level for personal listening devices; a TV, a smartphone; and establishments for entertainment (bars, clubs, rock concerts): 105-110 dB - may damage hearing within 5 minutes or less.
Yelling or a dog barking in your ear: 110 dB - may damage hearing in 2 minutes or less.
Being near loud sirens: 120 dB - can cause ear pain and injury, in addition to hearing loss.
Firecrackers going off: 140-150 dB - can lead to pain, ear injury, and hearing loss.
How can you determine which sound levels are safe?
The impact of low noise levels over an extended time is the same as loud noises heard over a shorter time. You can use a sound level meter (SLM) app to measure noise levels in your environment. Some apps can predict the maximum amount of noise you can handle daily. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the World Health Organization (WHO) recommend keeping environmental noises lower than 70 dBA over 24 hours - that’s 75 dBA over 8 hours - to avoid noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL).
If you or a loved one are experiencing hearing problems, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
In general, dating can be nerve-wracking. Adding hearing loss to the mix can make it downright intimidating. Maybe you’re unsure as to when you should mention your hearing loss.
It’s one thing to experience the complexities of dealing with hearing loss in everyday situations, but those feelings can intensify while navigating your dating life.
To make dating easier for someone with hearing loss, follow these guidelines and feel confident enough to advocate for yourself.
1. Remind yourself that you are more than your hearing loss. If you’re feeling apprehensive, talk to friends and family about this situation to regain assurance about the best parts of yourself.
2. Be upfront and honest with others. Most dating initially happens online these days, and you might not feel comfortable sharing certain information on your online profile. The truth will eventually slip out as the relationship deepens. So it’s useless to lie about something as important as your hearing health. Being honest about it and seeing the person’s response would help you understand if they have enough compassion and whether they are open to learning how to better communicate with you. You also have the choice of waiting to bring up your hearing loss to find out whether there’s a genuine interest between you two. If the first chats or dates happen online, carefully look at the accessibility options. Every service offers different access options for live-captioning and noise reduction.
3. Find what works best for you. If you don’t like navigating through dating sites made for the general public, there are different ones specifically for deaf or hard-of-hearing singles. It can be easier and more comfortable to hang out with other people who experience difficulty with their hearing. With the Association of Late Deafened Adults (ALDA) and Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA), there’s a good chance of finding friendships. Local chapters are available so you can meet people in real life and possibly meet someone for a date.
4. Select a location for a date. When you decide to meet, find an optimal environment. Walking in the park or taking a leisurely hike lets you be active while learning more about each other. If you dine indoors, find a place with carpeting on the floors - maybe even on the walls. Upholstered furniture would be better than areas with hard surfaces. Go during off-hours - it will be quieter. Museums and botanical gardens are peaceful spots that will make communication easier. If you go to a movie, inform your date that you need captions. Maybe you’ll both be interested in seeing a foreign film.
5. Keep things fun, easy, and light. Don’t force yourself or your date to feel pressured into understanding everything all the time. Let your partner know they are not responsible for updating you about every detail in every situation. Missing things during conversations are bound to happen. Tell them not to stress out about it and hold them to it. Have a sense of humor about it. Laughing at yourself is a sign of maturity. Talk about a silly misunderstanding related to your hearing loss.
6. Keep up with good communication. A successful relationship requires expressing your needs and understanding your partner’s needs. Hearing and listening are two different things. There’s the physical aspect of hearing. There is also the awareness, sensitivity, and frequent clarification needed with listening. If you don’t feel comfortable communicating your needs to the person you date, move on to someone who will reciprocate your needs.
If you or a loved one are experiencing hearing loss and need a hearing test, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing.
Hearing Health and Heart Health: Take Care of Your Physical and Emotional Health This Valentine's Day
Whether it’s hearing your favorite love song or the words “I love you” this Valentine’s Day, remember that it’s not just important to keep your ears healthy - you need to physically and emotionally take care of your heart too.
The heart needs exercise to maintain a healthy cardiovascular system. Proper blood flow to crucial organs, including your ears, is necessary for overall health.
What potential risks can a poor cardiovascular system cause to your hearing?
When discussing any health concerns, taking preventative measures is the best way to avoid these problems. Hearing loss can cause cognitive decline and isolation, which may lead to depression. Make sure that you take care of your physical needs, as well as your emotional, spiritual, and social needs. A meaningful connection with others is just as important as taking care of your body. If you’re experiencing hearing loss, connecting with others can be challenging. Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing to schedule regular hearing tests and seek treatment with hearing aids if your hearing has worsened.
Happy Valentine’s Day from the staff at Pure Sound!
If you want to have a healthy auditory system, you also need to have a healthy heart. Proper blood flow to critical areas of the body is essential. For the inner ear, blood flow to the cochlea is key to hearing better. Good blood flow in the heart is as equally important.
According to a 2010 Wichita State University study, poor cardiovascular health and bad hearing go hand in hand, as well as good cardiovascular health and good hearing. The study found that low-frequency hearing loss can predict heart problems.
Let your primary healthcare provider know if you have low-frequency hearing loss so they can determine whether there are also heart-related risks.
If you, or a loved one, are experiencing problems with hearing for any reason, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation from one of our hearing aid providers.
Did you know that 25 percent of people with hearing loss, don’t realize they have it?
Presbycusis, or age-related hearing loss, is the most common type of hearing loss. It’s also the type of hearing loss that occurs very slowly over time, making it difficult to notice the loss until it’s too late to treat it.
Early signs of hearing loss are hard to recognize, but it is possible to identify them. There are clues that you, or others in your life, need a hearing test.
9 Signs You Are Experiencing Hearing Loss
1. Everyone sounds like they’re mumbling
Do others sound like they aren’t speaking clearly? Are you able to hear certain speech sounds, but not other sounds? Most people with hearing loss start to notice they cannot hear women with high-pitched voices, or children’s voices.
If everyone sounds like they aren’t speaking clearly, you should get a hearing test.
2. Not being able to follow a conversation
Can you mostly hear when others speak, but have difficulty following along during a conversation?
When a person loses their hearing, the brain has to work harder to listen, interpret, and fill in the blanks. This makes it challenging to follow along during conversations. If more than one person is talking, it becomes even more challenging.
3. Others notice your hearing loss before you do
If your family members are constantly telling you to turn the volume down on your TV, computer, or any other device, it’s time to get your hearing tested. If you are both feeling frustrated when trying to communicate with each other, it’s definitely time to get your hearing tested.
4. Easily distracted when there’s background noise
No matter what level of hearing abilities you have, background noise can distract you from your conversations. Most people with healthy hearing can mentally block out most noises and focus on the person/people they are talking to. Someone with hearing loss will stop being able to do this because they are too tired to block it out. Staying on task can be difficult, so if you are easily distracted it’s time to get your hearing checked.
5. Difficulty hearing phone conversations
Some people with hearing loss cannot hear others clearly enough over the phone. The reception can make this experience worse.
Speech that is heard through any phone sounds slightly different than human speech. For anyone with hearing loss, this can make conversations more challenging.
Tinnitus and hearing loss often go hand-in-hand, but not always. It’s usually a high-pitched ringing noise that is heard with no outside source. It gets worse when the person who has it is in a quiet environment.
Tinnitus can also sound like a beeping, chirping, hissing, humming, thumping, or roaring sound. If you notice these noises, which tend to occur after being exposed to very loud sounds, get help immediately.
7. Unequal levels of noise
Hyperacusis, also known as hypersensitivity to some noises, is a rare symptom of hearing loss. Losing your hearing can actually make certain sounds louder. Your brain will compensate for the hearing loss by making different sounds louder.
8. Forgetting conversations you had
Do some conversations go through one ear and out the other? It may not be your memory, but rather the fact that your brain is overworked and therefore you have trouble recalling conversations that you weren’t able to hear in the first place.
9. Problems with balance
It’s possible, but rare for hearing loss alongside balance problems. The inner ear controls equilibrium, and anything that affects its function can make it harder to remain balanced and standing upright.
If you or a loved one is experiencing hearing loss, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Tinnitus symptoms become triggered for different reasons in each person. It can range from poor sleeping habits to your diet. We’re sharing some foods to avoid along with lifestyle changes that can help make symptoms more manageable.
Certain foods and eating habits can directly impact your overall health. A diabetic with high blood pressure or high cholesterol levels follows a specific diet. Most are unfamiliar with ototoxic foods.
Ototoxicity refers to the harmful effects on the ears that certain substances (like foods or medications) can induce. If you have problems with your ears and/or hearing health, you should avoid these substances.
Some foods are good for protecting your ears. These foods are rich in folic acid, Omega 3, and Vitamin C. some foods are harmful to the ears.
Which Foods can be Harmful to Your Hearing Health
Hearing healthcare providers urge anyone with hearing problems to cut down their consumption of the following:
4 Bad Habits
Alcohol and tobacco: Everyone knows that consuming these substances can take a toll on your health. It’s also worth noting that tobacco smoke can decrease blood flow to the inner ear.
Frequent noise exposure: overexposure to loud noises harms the auditory cells located in the inner ear. Hearing slowly worsens over time if the exposure lasts too long. Background noise, excessive workplace noise, or listening to loud audio with headphones/earbuds, pose serious risks to hearing health. Always carry around earplugs and wear them if you are exposed to loud noises.
Poor hygiene: Too much earwax that isn’t removed correctly can lead to a blockage in the ear canal. Gently rinse your ears with warm water and a cloth. DO NOT insert anything small like cotton swabs to remove the wax. Depending on the amount and type of earwax you produce, you are pushing the earwax further into your ears. Some people’s earwax can be dry and flakey, and others can be moist and sticky.
Medications: Ototoxic drugs can worsen symptoms of hearing loss or induce other hearing problems. Salicylate, used in common anti-inflammatories, can harm a person’s hearing if taken in high doses. Discuss medications that you currently take or ones that you plan on taking with your hearing healthcare provider.
If you or a loved one are experiencing hearing loss and/or tinnitus, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
If you need to scare off a groundhog who decided to reside underneath your shed, burrow into your backyard, or under your home, try making a loud noise. They are usually active during the daytime. Groundhogs are known for being scared off by noise due to their extreme hearing sensitivity to various audio ranges. For humans, it’s akin to standing next to loud speakers at a concert without earplugs or ear muffs.
An ultrasonic-repellent device creates a high-pitched sound that startles the groundhog and keeps them at bay. Strategically placing one of these devices in your yard will scare the groundhog away from whatever area you want to protect from them.
If you are a human who has trouble with hearing, contact us for a complimentary hearing test and consultation with one of our hearing aid providers in Elizabethtown, Lititz, or Strasburg.
Do you often find yourself in situations where you cannot hear others during a conversation? Do you keep asking others to repeat themselves? Does it make you feel like a pest and get frustrated? If so, don’t stop communicating altogether; communicate more. The following three ways will help you better improve communication when you have hearing loss.
1. Be Honest
With hearing loss, conversations don’t have to be challenging. Be honest about your situation. Let people know you have trouble hearing. Most people will be accommodating. It is better to speak up about hearing loss than to withdraw and not socialize. Being upfront about it will lessen the pressure on you to keep up with the discussion. Mingling more often will reduce anxiety, depression, and stress. The burden to adapt should not be yours alone. People around you need to adjust their communication styles to suit your needs. But they can’t do so if you are not honest with them about your hearing loss. Tell them what’s going on so they can help you by changing how they communicate.
Whether it's finding an area with better lighting so you can see each others facial expressions and gestures, or using a caption app, people are usually willing to make accommodations.
2. Find ways to Control Your Environment
With hearing loss, some environments are better than others for holding conversations. But you have the power to adjust your situation. For example, asking to sit on a particular side of the dinner table or eat at a quieter restaurant because you can hear better from one ear than the other is a proactive stance. Such requests are reasonable, so friends and loved ones should understand.
Choose an optimal setting for social interaction. We know that’s not always a possibility. Try to manage unavoidable, noisy situations. Get next to whoever is speaking. Observe their hand gestures, and read their lips. Pay attention to their body language. If understanding someone is still tricky, be sure to tell the individual so they can attempt to ease the situation. Pretending to understand is not very helpful and can last only so long.
3. Find a Solution instead of Struggling to Hear
Open communication is key in dealing with hearing loss. Don’t just be honest with others but also be honest with yourself. Don’t continue to struggle. Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing and make an appointment to discuss your hearing loss and possible solutions.
When you have hearing loss and don’t have hearing aids, the inability to hear clearly can make you feel depressed and isolated from others. When it is hard to hear, it is hard to comfortably participate in one conversation, let alone in group conversations and activities.
Hearing aids ease the stress of struggling to listen. Communicating with others can still be challenging while wearing hearing aids, but not as strenuous as before using hearing aids. You may still need others to face you when they speak, and only one person should speak at a time while making sure you are paying attention to them. Hearing aids feature directional and omnidirectional microphones. Directional microphones pick up sounds from an assigned direction, usually from those facing you. Omnidirectional microphones pick up sounds that occur from any direction.
Programmable Hearing Aids
A hearing instrument specialist can program your hearing aids, and you can select appropriate settings for different situations. For example, let’s say you are talking to some people in a crowded environment. Maybe you only need to focus on a conversation with those people while blocking out background noises. Your hearing instrument specialist can program a setting through an app on your smartphone. All you need to do is open the app to access it.
You can also use speech-to-text apps to help facilitate conversations. If you are driving or biking in a busy area, you can place your hearing aids in an omnidirectional setting, which lets you hear in all directions to be more aware of your surroundings.
For a complimentary hearing test and hearing aid trial, contact us for a consultation with a hearing instrument specialist at Pure Sound Hearing.
The top three chronic physical conditions for people of any age are arthritis, heart disease, and hearing loss.
Hearing Loss Statistics from 2022
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) found that:
Older Adults: Hearing Loss Statistics
Statistics on Noise-Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL)
Too much exposure to loud noises is the top cause of NIHL. Nearly one in five employees is exposed to dangerous noise levels in their work environment. The CDC has found the following reports on NIHL:
Statistics on Children with Hearing Loss
Statistics on Veterans with Hearing Loss
U.S. veterans are at high risk of noise exposure while on the job. Services for hearing aids and hearing loss is available to them through the VA.
Statistics on Hearing Aid and Hearing Care
What is the number of hearing aid users?
According to the 2022 MarketTrak data:
Hearing Loss, Tinnitus, Cognitive Decline, and Balance Problems
MarketTrak’s 2022 survey also revealed that anyone with hearing issues also has higher rates of common conditions and is more than 3.5 times more likely to have tinnitus, cognitive/memory problems, falls, and balance problems. Those who do not wear hearing aids have higher rates of depression due to isolation, which worsens based on the severity of hearing loss. When you have trouble hearing, and those with whom you communicate don’t try to adopt an easier style of communication, it drives the person with hearing loss to give up on trying to interact with people altogether.
Studies have also shown that those with heart disease are at a higher risk of hearing loss. When your blood flow has poor circulation, oxygen can’t reach the delicate hair cells in the cochlea which damages or destroys them. Hair cells cannot regrow, so once they are destroyed it will lead to permanent hearing loss.
For people with diabetes, hearing loss is twice as common than in those who don’t have hearing problems.
If you or a loved one are experiencing hearing loss for any reason, please contact Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation with one of our hearing aid providers.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is now a reality. One way it’s being utilized is with your health. An AI medic will be your guide. Your clinical norms can be directly collected and stored on the cloud for your AI medic to check on at a moment’s notice before symptoms appear. The data gathered will be used to suggest modifications in lifestyle to prevent severe health problems from happening. For example, if you wear an Apple Watch, there’s a feature that signals users to stand and walk around for a minute if they have been sitting or lying down for too long. You may also set your watch for a certain amount of time to exercise. You can set up notifications for every few hours each day.
If you have any symptoms that appear before a medical problem occurs, the artificial intelligence medic will alert paramedics and emergency contacts beforehand. Wearable sensors - also featured in hearing aids - make it possible to detect falls and abnormal heart rates, identify sounds, and track your fitness routine.
Bio-sensors can aid in hearing, too. But nobody wants to walk around with a cap of electrodes connected to hearing aids and monitoring EEG signals so that it also picks up conversations. Future trends will dictate how hearing wearables will look and work. Be prepared for more significant changes on the horizon. Digital technology will work on a whole new level. Contact one of our hearing instrument specialists at Pure Sound Hearing for more information.
The property by which sounds organize on a frequency-related scale is pitch. For those who experience hearing loss, sounds with higher pitches are often the first to go and the hardest to get back. In other cases, these high pitches can seem louder than usual, which can cause pain. For example, the high frequencies of bus brakes squealing may be painful, but the low frequencies of a jackhammer may not.
If you lose high frequencies, it would be harder to hear children's or high-pitched female voices. If low frequencies go, it would be harder to hear deeper male voices. So, it is good to better understand the pattern of your hearing. For some people, the pitch varies widely in terms of hearing. Any way you look at it, you might limit your interaction with those people and situations you can hear best, which means you will miss out on a lot.
If you are frustrated with your hearing loss, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing to schedule an appointment with one of our hearing aid providers.
Hearing Protection used during Hobbies
Are you planning to commit to your hobbies in the new year? Everyone should take on a hobby to enjoy in their spare time. Hobbies can be a significant part of our life and bring enjoyment when life gets too stressful. Consider health and safety precautions before embarking on any potentially loud hobbies that can cause noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL).
If you’re interested in woodworking, whether you’re a beginner who wants to build some shelves or a seasoned woodworker who wants a canoe, wearing earplugs or earmuffs is necessary when working with power tools.
Power tools and decibel output
Hammer Drill: 114 dB
Chain Saw: 109 dB
Circular Saw: 101 dB
Hand Drill: 99 dB
Router: 95 dB
Belt Sander: 94 dB
Table Saw: 93 dB
Playing an instrument
Whether you are learning a new instrument or have been playing for many years, you should wear hearing protection when playing very loud instruments and take breaks in between playing.
Instruments and their decibel output (when played at their loudest)
French horn: 90 to 106 dB
Trombone: 85 to 114 dB
Flute: 85 to 111 dB
Cello: 82 to 92 dB
Clarinet: 92 to 103 dB
Piano (normal practice): 60 to 70 dB
Piano (fortissimo): 84 to 103 dB
Oboe: 90 to 94 dB
Hearing protection does not only include safeguarding your ears from harmful sound waves, but it’s also helpful to keep your ears clean and prevent debris from entering your ear canals.
Any style of earplugs will ensure air bubbles or water that gets trapped in the ear and will stay away from the ear canal or eardrum. Water that gets trapped can affect your hearing and may cause an ear infection.
Earplugs reduce noise. They cannot cancel out all noise, so if you wear them while swimming, you’ll still be able to hear a lifeguard’s whistle. Earplugs are available in many different styles and sizes. Standard foam earplugs are available at Pure Sound Hearing.
If you need earplugs, a hearing test, or hearing aids, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
As we wind down from this year and prepare to welcome the new year at a friend or family member’s party or an event, please remember to protect your ears from loud noises that are bound to occur.
New Year’s Eve is commonly associated with celebrating with loud music, dancing, fireworks, and alcohol. Do you ever think about how loud a cork removed from a champagne bottle can be? Even getting hit in the ear with it flying nearly 25 miles per hour can cause damage to your eardrum.
A fireworks display is beautiful to watch and enjoy after the clock reaches midnight, but be aware that the bursts of noise can range from 150 to 175 decibels (dB). The average human’s listening threshold is 70-85 dB. That noise level can cause permanent damage to your hearing. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), adults should not be in an area with over 140 dB of peak sound pressure. Many people have endured some damage to their ears due to the sound of fireworks. Similar noise levels, such as live concerts, sound systems, and explosions, can cause tinnitus or permanent hearing loss. If you experience tinnitus due to fireworks noise, the phrase ‘ringing in the New Year’ can have a new meaning.
The importance of Distance between You and the Source of the Sound
One element of noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) caused by sounds like fireworks is the range of distance a person is from the source of sounds. The closer you are from where the sound originates, the more likely you experience hearing loss. To reduce the damage that noise does to your ears, make sure you are 15-20 meters away from the sound source. Children’s hearing is much more sensitive, so keeping them at a further distance is highly recommended.
Protect Your Ears with Ear Plugs
Is the sound nearby also loud? Earplugs aren’t just helpful in blocking out annoying background noises. Use them to protect your ears from dangerous levels of sound.
Indirect Noise Exposure
Anyone who lives near a popular/loud venue could be experiencing noise disturbance. Most people will tolerate the noises during celebrations. When these events last too long throughout the night and into the early morning hours, this can be considered noise pollution.
Night hours last from 11 pm to 7 am. The law allows a maximum noise level between these hours. A warning may be issued if there are complaints about the noise levels. For anyone who chooses not to expose themselves to the noise from these events, it can impact their mental and physical health. Noise pollution can raise blood pressure, causing hypertension and heart disease.
Homes nearby can be protected if New Year’s Eve event organizers block out some noise by using acoustic barriers. These barriers stop noise from being heard by people who did not attend the event.
If you are experiencing hearing loss caused by noise exposure or for any other reason, contact Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.