WHAT CAUSES TINNITUS?

Do you have ringing in your ears? If you are over age 50, you could be one in five people that may be affected by some form of tinnitus – ringing in the ears. Hearing loss is the biggest cause of tinnitus.

Being continually exposed to loud environments, traffic noise, and even concerts can damage your hearing. This abuse to your hearing could be the reason for ringing in the ears. Wearing ear protection when you’re exposed to loud sounds will help to prevent damage to the eardrum, and hearing aid technology can  actually help to reduce the symptoms of tinnitus.

If you smoke, research has found that nicotine in cigarettes can be a factor. Over-the-counter medication such as aspirin may trigger tinnitus, as well as such medications as antibiotics, certain diuretics, and even food additives.

As we age there are changes that occur in the ear. The middle ear bones change shape and may even harden in a process known as otosclerosis. These changes can affect the cochlea, where sound is processed and transmitted to the brain. Communication from the ear to the brain, as a result of these defects, may cause the partial or constant ringing.

Age-related hearing loss can be accompanied by tinnitus, which is why so many senior aged adults experience this condition. Hearing loss can lead to depression, anxiety, and social isolation.

Remember to never let any health condition go untreated: even something as simple as an ear infection. Your ear health is important to preventing serious tinnitus and future hearing problems. If you feel you may have hearing loss, call 000-000-0000 today, to schedule your appointment with one of our hearing professionals.

Article courtesy of NuEar

How to make TV watching more enjoyable with hearing aids.

When meeting with your hearing healthcare provider, you were probably given a questionnaire asking about situations where hearing is challenging. If TV was on that list, your provider may have discussed some solutions to help make TV listening easier and more enjoyable. Like many people, you might have decided to ‘just start’ with the hearing aids, knowing you could add those additional solutions down the road.

If you are still having difficulty hearing the TV, or need to turn it up louder than your companions prefer, it might be time to revisit TV solutions available to you. The good news is NuEar offers two great ways to enhance TV watching with hearing aids.

Tunity iPhone app

For those currently wearing NuEar’s Made for iPhone solution, iNOW iQ or iNOW, your TV solution is the Tunity app. NuEar recently partnered with Tunity to provide wireless streaming from over 100 popular TV channels directly to your Halo devices.

Simply download the free Tunity app from the App Store. Next, with your iNOW devices paired to your iPhone, open the Tunity app and scan the live TV you’re currently watching (watch this if you don’t know how to pair your hearing aids). The Tunity app will then identify the channel being viewed.

If the channel is one supported by the app, your iPhone will begin to stream the audio to your iNOW devices. This is a great solution for wireless TV streaming at an airport, the gym, or even at your home. For a full list of the TV channels supported, visit “Supported Channels” on the settings page of the Tunity app.

NuEar SurfLink accessories

If you’re currently wearing NuEar’s newest product line, NOW, or our older technology, like NuEar SDS, your TV solution can be one or all three of our popular SurfLink accessories.

SurfLink Media 2 is a wireless TV device that connects directly (hard wired) to your television and transmits the audio to your NOW hearing aids. There are two ways to connect SurfLink Media 2 to your television, depending on the connection available on your television. You will either plug it into the RCA jacks for your television, or you’ll utilize the S/PDIF, Optical TOSLINK jacks.

After plugging SurfLink Media 2 into the television, you simply attach the power cord and you’re set to stream. Your hearing healthcare provider should have activated the setting within your hearing aids to allow them to wirelessly connect to SurfLink Media 2 — so all you need to do is adjust the volume on the SurfLink Media 2 to increase or decrease the streamed input to your hearing aids.

You can listen at the volume you want, and those watching with you can set the TV volume to what is comfortable for them. SurfLink Media 2 can be paired to several sets of NOW hearing devices at once, so if a family member also has NOW devices, they can take advantage of the wireless stream from the TV, too. To end the stream, simply turn off the SurfLink Media 2 or the TV.

To make things even easier, have your hearing healthcare provider activate the ‘automatic streaming’ option in your NOW devices so you do not need to touch a button on your hearing aids to activate the streaming.

SurfLink Mobile 2 is another option for TV streaming with NuEar’s NOW or NuEar SDS hearing aids. SurfLink Mobile 2 is a multifunction accessory. With your NOW hearing aids connected to SurfLink Mobile 2, access the Streaming Screen by selecting the musical note icon at the bottom of the SurfLink Mobile 2.

Next, select the Surround mode and place the SurfLink Mobile 2 next to the TV speaker. To adjust the streamed volume, adjust the controls on the left side of the SurfLink Mobile 2. To end the stream, tap the Surround mode icon again. SurfLink Mobile 2 does a lot more than just stream TV, though. To see everything it can do to enhance your hearing experience, visit its webpage.

SurfLink Remote Microphone is the third and newest option for TV streaming with NuEar’s NOW hearing aids. The SurfLink Remote Microphone was designed to be easy and convenient to use. With your NOW hearing aids connected to the SurfLink Remote Microphone, slide the power slider up to power on the device.

Next, place the SurfLink Remote Microphone flat on its clip next to the TV speaker. To adjust the streamed volume, simply use the buttons on your NOW hearing aids to increase or decrease the stream. (You will need to let your hearing healthcare provider know you would like to activate this option as it will need to be done at a fitting appointment). To end the stream, slide the power slider down to turn off the SurfLink Remote Microphone. Check out this video to see what else you can do with this cool tool.

Don’t let hearing loss make TV viewing less enjoyable

As you can see, both the Tunity app and NuEar’s SurfLink accessories can be added to enhance your enjoyment of TV at any time, not necessarily at your first fitting appointment. For additional TV streaming support, please contact your hearing healthcare provider.

 

This blog was originally published on Starkey.com.

Tips for Communicating with Hearing Loss

Tips for Communicating with Hearing Loss Tips for Communicating with Hearing Loss

When you have hearing loss, understanding speech in a conversation can be difficult, especially if there is noise in the background. Communicating in a large group is even harder with multiple speakers, a mix of high- and low-frequency voices, and maybe one or three conversations happening simultaneously.

But conversation is a two-way street, and when you have hearing loss you want to make sure you can succeed as both the listener and the communicator. This means helping others in the conversation to help you.

Here are some tips to help communicate smoothly, both as a listener and communicator:

1. Be open about your hearing loss. Hearing loss is something you can’t see, so it’s up to you to be upfront about your hearing needs in any situation. Acknowledge your hearing loss and let others know what sounds are difficult for you to hear and what background noises they should think of before talking.

Consider offering up some ways they can help you listen and communicate better as well. See below for some examples:

a. Pause conversation when loud noises overwhelm speakers’ voices

b. Sit facing you so that lip reading is possible

c. Speak slowly and clearly, but don’t over— or under— enunciate and don’t shout

2. Suggest the meeting place or event location. As you plan to meet with friends and family, try to be part of deciding where you will meet and when. This way you can better control the setting you’ll be in and plan accordingly. For example, if you are meeting for lunch, try to go for a later lunch hour when there won’t be as many people.

3. Arrive early. Know how your mother always said to arrive early? Well, these are wise words for anyone with hearing loss. Arriving early allows you to take the time to consider where you and your group can sit, choose the best seat for yourself (if possible, one that allows you to face everyone). Also take some time to allow your ears to adjust to the environment.

Arriving early also allows your ears to adjust to the environment and gives you the opportunity to change your hearing aids to the appropriate program. NOW iQ and iNOW iQ hearing aids are especially helpful when conversing in busy environments as they allow you to adjust your programs, volume, sound quality and create unique geotagged memories for any location. Your iPhone can act as a remote microphone to amplify speech over noise.

4. Speak up when you miss something. Sometimes you just miss something in a conversation or you aren’t sure you heard it correctly. When this happens, don’t be afraid to speak up and ask someone to repeat themselves.

Don’t wear hearing aids but want to hear better in noisy situations? Check out our iNOW iQ hearing aids today!

HEARING AID REPAIRS

How often will my hearing aids need to be repaired?

 

It is not uncommSept13_ALL BRANDS_DSC_3734.jpgon for hearing aids to require some degree of service each year, which is why they are sold with warranties and repair coverage.

 

But just how often each person’s hearing aids will need repair is difficult to predict.

 

That’s because variables like usage, care, and even your lifestyle come into play. Are you active? Do you work in an office, or at a job that’s outside or is physically demanding? Do you live in a warm, wet or humid climate? Do you store your hearing aids in their case every night? Use a drying case? Throw them in the bottom of your purse when you aren’t wearing them? Diligently remove them before every shower or when you go out in the pouring rain? You get the idea.

 

And because hearing aids sit inside or behind your ear, they are exposed to elements that are not exactly ideal. Humidity, earwax, moisture and debris can each affect hearing aid performance and longevity. By far the majority of repairs that clinics and manufacturers see are simply to remove wax and debris.

 

Hearing aids are built to be worn every day and can handle a lot. But they are small, sophisticated electronic devices, and need to be treated as such. So while it’s impossible to know how often yourhearing aids will need to be repaired, I can tell you that regular cleaning, routine maintenance and diligent care will go a long way to keeping them in or on your ears and out of the repair shop.

 

Need some tips for how to care and clean for your hearing aids? Contact us today!

 

This blog was originally published by Dr. Beth McCormick on www.starkey.com.  

The five stages of hearing loss.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The five stages of hearing loss

Helping you hear better is our goal, and because that is our focus every single day you can be sure we’re familiar with the process people go through as hearing becomes a challenge.

You can also be sure that we’re here to help no matter what stage you’re in.

From a quick hearing test that can show you what level of hearing loss you might have to testing out our new hearing aids, we can help you find the next step in your journey with ease!

 

This blog and cartoon originally appeared on www.starkey.com.

A PASSION FOR THE HEARING PROFESSION

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Amy Holland, Au.D., our audiologist who works in the Fairfield and Harrison offices. She takes pride in fitting people in her community with the latest in hearing aid technology. Recently, she shared a few of her favorite hearing aid fitting stories with with Starkey Hearing Technologies. Below, she describes in her own words why she loves fitting NuEar hearing aids:

Dr. Amy Holland: I’m continually surprised by how my patients manage to reach right in and touch my heart in a way that is almost unnerving. Today, a new patient of mine came in with his wife. They were one of the sweetest couples I’ve ever met. While fitting him with hearing aids, I asked her to talk to him so I could ensure he was hearing her clearly.

I looked down to write in his chart and I didn’t hear anything but her softly giggling, not talking. I looked up and saw him gently blowing kisses at her while she giggled and BLUSHED. They have been married for over 57 years. And that man still makes her blush and giggle like he did when they were teenagers and had just started dating. I think everyone, at least once in life, deserves to experience a love like that. Hearing her voice clearly, the one voice that means the most to him, was really magical, a moment I won’t forget.

“I’ve never heard it before!”
Another one of my favorite fittings happened when an audiologist friend of mine, who lives out of state, sent her beloved grandmother to see me because she needed new hearing aids. I was extremely honored that another professional would trust me to treat a member of her own family, and didn’t expect the visit to be anything out of the ordinary. She was a seasoned hearing aid wearer, after all, and I figured new aids would be great for her, but old hat at this point. I fit her with the newest technology and a hearing aid style that I thought would be much better than what she had previously worn.

As I turned her hearing aids on, she innocently took a piece of candy out of her purse. As she opened it, she gasped, then started laughing. She started to tear up while she laughed. Her husband and I looked at her with concern. She said, “Oh my goodness! I can’t believe that this candy wrapper makes a sound! I’ve never heard it before!” As we all started laughing (and crying) she turned to her husband and said, “I have been opening these candies during church services for years. Why in the world didn’t you tell me they were so darn loud?!? You just let me sit in church making all this noise just so I could eat a little piece of candy?!”

Seeing the positive effects of better hearing
I absolutely live for these moments like these. It is a great reminder for all of us to appreciate what we have. Something small, like unwrapping candy might annoy some, but the sounds you might find annoying are the same sounds someone else wishes they could hear. I am passionate about my profession, because I get to see how better hearing positively effects my patients every single day.

If you live in Fairfield or Harrison, Ohio and want to reach out to Dr. Holland for hearing help, click here to schedule an appointment.

Know Someone with “Selective Hearing?”

Is it really “selective hearing” or is it hearing loss? We’ve often heard the “selective hearing” excuse, so next time someone uses it, put them to the test. Literally.

 A hearing test will clarify once and for all if their hearing loss is selective or real. Contact us today to schedule an appointment!

This cartoon and blog originally appeared on www.starkey.com.

Don’t let hearing loss go untreated – infographic

WHAT YOU DON’T HEAR MIGHT HURT YOU

What you don’t know about hearing loss can hurt you. Treating your hearing like your eyesight can hlep identify problems before they become too serious.

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WHAT A HEARING INSTRUMENT SPECIALIST CAN DO FOR YOU

There seems to be more misunderstanding when it concerns hearing care than with most other medical specializations. We don’t have to ask, for example, what a dentist or eye doctor can do for us. But when it comes to our hearing, we’re oftentimes unsure as to what we should do or which professional we should visit.

So what exactly can a local hearing instrument specialist do for you? Several things, actually—things that could turn out making your life better and more convenient.

Here are 6 services you should be aware of.

Examination of hearing and balance

Hearing specialists are specially trained in assessing hearing and balance. If you suspect hearing loss, balance problems, or experience ringing or buzzing in the ears, the local hearing specialist is the go-to expert.

By carrying out professional audiological assessments, hearing specialists can skillfully establish the cause of your hearing loss or balance problems. And if your hearing loss is brought about by an underlying medical condition, hearing specialists can prepare the relevant referrals.

In addition, If you have persistent ringing in the ears, known as tinnitus, some hearing specialists can supply focused therapies.

Earwax extraction

In some cases, what is assumed to be hearing loss is nothing more than excess earwax buildup. While it’s not the most extravagant feature of the job, hearing specialists are skilled in professional ear cleaning. If this is the reason behind your hearing loss, you could begin hearing better within minutes.

And remember, it’s never safe to insert anything, including cotton swabs, into your ear canal at home. There are several other appropriate ways you can clean your ears, such as with homemade solutions or ideally by booking an appointment the hearing specialist.

Customized hearing protection

Many individuals make the mistake of first visiting the hearing specialist after they acquire hearing loss. Don’t commit the same mistake. If you’re working in a loud career (for instance as a musician) or take part in loud activities (such as hunting), you should get yourself custom made ear protection to avoid future hearing loss.

You could just purchase some foam earplugs at the convenience store, but they’re generally uncomfortable and generate an bothersome muffled sound. Custom earplugs fit comfortably in your ear and preserve the sounds you want to hear while protecting against the sounds that result in damage.

Professional hearing tests (audiometry)

Hearing loss is imperceptible, pain-free, and oftentimes difficult to acknowledge or accept. The only way to get an accurate diagnosis is with the aid of a professional hearing assessment referred to as audiometry.
Using leading-edge equipment and techniques, the hearing specialist can precisely diagnose hearing loss. After carrying out the testing, the final results are printed on a chart referred to as an audiogram. Just like a fingerprint, everyone’s hearing loss is slightly different, which will be visually displayed on the audiogram.
If you can reap benefits from hearing aids, the audiogram will serve as the blueprint to programming and personalizing the technology.

Hearing aid selection and adjustment

Hearing aids come in many styles, from a number of manufacturers, equipped with countless features. Given that everyone’s hearing loss and preferences are a little different, this wide variety is necessary—but it does make things slightly overwhelming when you need to make a choice.

That’s where hearing specialists can help you. They’ll help you find the hearing aid that suits your hearing loss while ensuring that you don’t waste money on features you simply don’t care about or require.

Once you come across the right hearing aid, your hearing specialist will make use of your audiogram as the blueprint for customization. That way, you’ll be sure that your hearing aid optimizes your hearing according to the sounds you primarily have difficulty hearing.

A lifetime of healthy hearing

The health of your hearing should be sustained as vigorously as any other component of your health. We have family physicians, dentists, and optometrists that help safeguard various aspects of our health on a continuing basis.

Similarly, we ought to have a dedicated professional looking out for the health of our hearing. Your partnership with your hearing specialist shouldn’t end following your hearing test; it should be ongoing. Hearing specialists provide a range of valuable life-long services, including hearing aid cleaning, upkeep, troubleshooting, and repair, together with advice and guidance on the latest technology.

So although your hearing will undoubtedly change over time, your hearing specialist should not. If you commit to finding a local professional who cares about helping people over everything else, you’ll enjoy the advantages of healthy hearing for life.