September is Healthy Aging® Month, an annual health observance designed to focus national attention on the positive aspects of growing older. Originally introduced when the oldest baby boomers were about to turn 50, there now are over 76 million baby boomers, and the first of the 82.1 million generation X-ers reached 50 in 2015.
One of the most commonly searched terms on the Internet related to hearing is tinnitus. Clearly, many people are bothered by what they perceive as ringing in their ears, crickets chirping, or a constant white noise. What most people don’t understand is what tinnitus is, and what they can do to reduce its bothersome symptoms.
A recent study published in the journal JAMA Otolaryngology – Head & Neck Surgery, suggests older adults who wear hearing aids may make fewer visits to the hospital.
People with diabetes over the age of 65 are three times more likely to be hospitalized in a given year for falls. That’s why preventing falls in this age group is important to help reduce declines in mobility, activity avoidance, loss of physical independence, and even death.
Do you wear hearing aids, but wonder if you’re hearing the best you can? You’re not alone. Consumer Reports indicates, based on real-ear probe-microphone measures, that two thirds of patients fit with hearing aids in the U.S. may have improperly fitting hearing aids.
Noise-induced hearing loss can occur as the result of one single exposure to loud noise, like a rock concert, or exposure to loud noises over a lifetime. Though this problem is common, preventing hearing loss is critical to the ability to continue to hear and reduces the risk of hearing loss later in life.
You’ve no doubt seen ads for sound amplifiers that claim to help you hear better at a lower cost than traditional hearing aids. Some of these products are referred to as personal sound amplification products, or PSAPs. Though it’s true these products can be purchased online or without seeing an audiologist, they shouldn’t be confused with hearing aids. So, let’s set the record straight. The primary difference between a hearing aid and these personal sound amplification products is that a hearing aid is a custom-fit device for an extremely complex and intricate sensory system that isn’t functioning normally, resulting in hearing loss.
If you suspect that you may have hearing loss, you’re not alone. Of the nearly 40 million people in the United States with hearing loss, the majority are still in the workforce. And more than 10 percent of full-time employees have a diagnosed hearing problem, according to EPIC Hearing Healthcare’s, “Listen Hear!” survey. Another 30 percent suspect they have a problem but have not yet sought treatment. And still another study revealed that hearing loss is actually common among forty-somethings - people who are in the prime of their careers.
Our hearing is a sense most of us take for granted - until we begin to lose it. And, as many people who have hearing loss will tell you, duplicating the ear’s natural ability to constantly adjust to a wide range of sounds and listening environments is a challenge. Keeping up with hearing in an always-changing environment requires a hearing aid that can adapt and adjust seamlessly.
Believe it or not, Kansas City is filled with sounds loud enough to cause noise-induced hearing loss - noises like cars racing around the Kansas Speedway, crowds cheering at the Kansas City Chiefs games, or concerts at the Sprint Center where the volume “rocks” the rafters, and your ears.