Hearing Resources (200)
Sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) – occurring with inner ear damage – is the most common type of permanent hearing loss.
The tiny hair cells in the cochlea are lost throughout our lifetimes, causing our hearing to gradually become less sharp. In addition to the natural aging process, these hair cells can become damaged by exposure to excessive noise.
Someone with SNHL may have difficulty hearing soft sounds, while even loud sounds may be muffled. Although medications or surgery cannot typically resolve SNHL, hearing aids are likely to significantly improve the person’s ability to hear.
Despite the profound advancements of hearing aid technology, wearers may find they still have problems understanding words while wearing them.
Although properly fitting hearing aids often greatly help the word comprehension deficit, there are certain words or reasons why understanding what you’re hearing is difficult.
There are three types of hearing loss: sensorineural (issue in the inner ear and/or beyond), conductive (issue in the middle ear bones and ear drum) and mixed (combination of the two).
Individuals with sensorineural hearing loss tend to treat the issue with hearing aids, as there is no medical treatment for the issue. While the devices can help, they don’t actually treat the loss – rather, they amplify sounds in the environment and send them through a faulty hearing/comprehension system.
Hearing loss is not always due to cranking up the music through earbuds or prolonged exposure to other sounds.
Sometimes, the cause of our hearing impairment comes from within. There are a number of diseases that can contribute to hearing loss.
High Blood Pressure
A very common disease affecting nearly 75 million Americans, high blood pressure causes damage to arteries and blood vessels throughout the body – including the ears. Pressure on these blood thoroughfares causes damage to their linings and eventually, the buildup of fatty plaque. Hearing ability generally goes down as blood pressure rises.
When it comes to hearing aids, knowing the difference between digital and analog can make a world of difference.
All hearing aids consist of four components: amplifier, microphone, receiver and battery. The “digital” label refers to the amplifier, which increases the volume of sounds. Analog hearing aids could only do that – make sounds louder.
Today’s digital hearing aids are essentially a tiny computer that can do much more than simply amplify. Here are several of their benefits:
The decision whether or not to treat your hearing loss with hearing aids can be a tough choice.
After all, wearing hearing aids is a public admission that you do have an impairment – something that many people have a difficult time admitting to themselves, let alone the rest of the world. Although modern hearing aids can be very discreet, some are still hesitant about making the plunge.
Here are a few benefits to consider:
While our ears are one of the most magnificent organs in our bodies as they collect sounds and deliver the information to the brain, it’s really our brains that interpret what all the sounds mean. A sound is easy to process because the brain just needs to identify what the sound is coming from. The brain simply recognizes what is familiar, such as traffic noise or a kettle whistling, and can determine how far away the sound source is. For example, your brain knows what a dog’s bark sounds like and will also know if it is your own dog barking inside the house or the neighbor’s dog barking next door in the backyard.
Hearing people speaking and understanding what they are saying, provided you speak the same language of course, requires the brain to process all the different combinations of vowels and consonants, rapidly changing in normal conversational speech. Again, the ears are responsible for delivering all the information, but it is the brain that truly makes sense of it all. Hence, we hear with our brains.
Useful tips for those of you who have hearing aids that are paired with your smartphone:
- To pair hearing aids to an android phone, ensure your Bluetooth is on. Pull down the settings screen and pair the hearing aids directly through the Bluetooth. The downloaded app (which correlates to the hearing aid manufacturer) should then find your hearing aids.
- To pair hearing aids to an iPhone, ensure your Bluetooth is on. Open settings, touch General, Accessibility, and scroll down to MFi Hearing Devices. The phone will start looking for the hearing aids.
Medicine designed to help one aspect of your health can actually damage your hearing.
Drugs that harm the inner ear can cause hearing loss, tinnitus and balance problems are known as ototoxic. More than 200 medications – both prescription and over-the-counter – are known to be linked to ototoxicity, especially when taken in large doses.
If you’re like most people who notice their hearing is diminished, you probably haven’t taken immediate action to address the problem.
Surveys show that most people wait more than five years to investigate their hearing loss. The good news is that scheduling a hearing exam with an audiologist at Audio Help Hearing Centers can help you more fully enjoy life and minimize future hearing issues. May is Better Hearing Month, a great time to address your hearing loss.
Your hearing aid’s battery life is not an exact science – how long it lasts depends upon a number of factors. The type of battery, the number of hours per day the wearer uses the hearing aid and how it’s used while in operation all affect the battery’s life.
A typical hearing aid battery will last anywhere from a few days to a few weeks, depending on these factors. You will know it’s time to replace them if sounds become distorted or you have to turn up the volume significantly to hear sounds. Your hearing aid may also make a beeping noise when it’s low on power.