Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The "Hearing Bone's" connected to the WHAT?

Repost from the "Better Hearing Institute" November 12, 2013
Thought this was very good and want more people to see and read this.   Helping people hear is so  much more than just getting people to voices and background noise louder.  It's all about the improvement of a person's life with friends, family and activities they are interested in and living the lifestyle they have dreamed about.

The “hearing bone’s” connected to the what?

BHI - November 12, 2013

Hearing loss isn’t a “stand alone” condition. Not only does it affect virtually every aspect of a person’s life when left unaddressed, but hearing loss has been linked to other health conditions.

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The “Hearing Bone's” Connected to the What?
Studies Show that Hearing Loss is Connected to Other Health Conditions

Once upon a time, before people knew any better, they thought that hearing loss was simply a part of growing older—something not worth doing much about.

They were wrong.

Turns out, hearing loss isn’t fussy about age. More than half of us with hearing loss are still in the workforce. And hearing loss is a much bigger deal than we ever imagined. We need to take it seriously.

As one of the most common chronic health conditions in the United States today, hearing loss affects baby boomers, Gen Xers and every other age group. And, when left unaddressed, hearing loss affects just about every aspect of a person’s life.

The big surprise is that hearing loss has been linked to other health conditions.

Hearing loss can have unwelcome companions—like heart disease; diabetes; chronic kidney disease; depression; cognitive decline, dementia or Alzheimer’s disease; increased risk of falling; increased hospitalizations.

In fact, as studies on the link between hearing loss and other health conditions mount, we’ve begun to see how our ears—and specifically how our hearing—connect to our whole body and health.

Here’s what we know:

The very best thing to do for hearing loss is to find out if you have it as soon as possible. Then take it seriously. If deemed appropriate by a qualified hearing health care professional, treat it. Hearing aids can benefit the vast majority of people with hearing loss.

Cardiovascular and hearing health are connected. Studies show that a healthy cardiovascular system positively affects hearing. Conversely, inadequate blood flow and trauma to the blood vessels of the inner ear can contribute to hearing loss. Some experts even believe that because the inner ear is so sensitive to blood flow, it is possible that abnormalities in the cardiovascular system could be noted here earlier than in other less sensitive parts of the body—making the ear a kind of “window to the heart.”

People with diabetes are about twice as likely to have hearing loss as those without it.

Recent studies show a link between hearing loss and dementia, leading many experts to stress the importance of addressing hearing loss. One study found that seniors with hearing loss are significantly more likely to develop dementia over time than those who retain their hearing. Another found that hearing loss is associated with accelerated cognitive decline in older adults, and that those with hearing loss are more likely to develop problems thinking and remembering than older adults whose hearing is normal.

People who don’t address hearing loss are more prone to depression. Fortunately, studies show that people with hearing loss who use hearing aids often have fewer depressive symptoms, greater social engagement, and improved quality of life.

Hearing loss is tied to a three-fold risk of falling. One study found that even people with mild hearing loss were nearly three times more likely to have a history of falling.

A study of older adults showed that those with moderate chronic kidney disease had a higher prevalence of hearing loss than those of the same age without the disease.

Hospitalization is more likely for older adults with hearing loss than for their peers with normal hearing, according to a study by experts at Johns Hopkins.

A 2013-published study found that older men with hearing loss had a greater risk of dying, particularly from cardiovascular causes. But men and women who used hearing aids—even though they were older and had more severe hearing loss—had a significantly lower mortality risk than those with hearing loss who did not use hearing aids.

Most doctors don’t include hearing health as a routine part of annual exams. So ask to have your hearing tested. Once you reach middle-age, it makes sense to include hearing tests as part of your routine annual care.

It seems that the “hearing bone” may be connected to more than we originally thought.

So the next time you think you might be having trouble hearing something, listen to your ears. They may be telling you something.
For more information on hearing loss, visit www.betterhearing.org.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

"Impairments in Hearing and Vision Impact on Mortality in Older People"

This study was just published in the Oxford Journals (you can read the study from this link Oxford Journals - Hearing Impairment ).  What the study boiled down to was that "older men with Hearing Impairment were at a greater risk of dying from any cause and particularly cardiovascular causes by a factor of 25.4% over the average normal hearing male adult when followed up over a five-year period.  The question I have about this is how many if any had been treated with hearing aids and if the hearing aid wearers had shown any reduction from the non-wearer.  As we learn more and more about the "side" effects of hearing loss on individuals, mortality, earlier unset of Alzheimer, loss of grey matter density in the Auditory Cortex, and Brain Plasticity we have to wonder, those of in the hearing profession, if we are waiting too long to get amplification on individuals or are keeping the amplification current to meet their needs.   It seems the studies are show that the risks of waiting or not thinking how important our hearing is too our overall wellbeing.  In the past we have always thought of just the loss of word recognition was effected by holding off getting amplification and now the studies are starting to show a whole new realm of side effects we had no idea of that seem to have big side effects, not just to our lifestyle, but to our overall wellbeing and longevity.  Something to think about during the decision process as we move towards accepting amplification as a good and viable option.  Yes, good hearing aids are expensive but if they can help slow down or offset the side effects of a hearing impairment then that really lowers the cost of ownership I would think.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Noise and Noise Pollution

When does noise in our listening environment become Noise Pollution?  Every day we live in a sea of noise.  Traffic, HVAC fans, children playing, background music and more.  Our ears hear all of this and much more.  So the question becomes how do we protect ourselves from this on slot of toxic noise?  Part of the answer is good hearing protection and some of the answer can be found in the following article at Noise Pollution in your neighborhood.  To learn more see our website at www.earlink.com

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Duck Calling

Setting up the Sportsman Show schedule for the coming year.  Really looking forward to helping people protect their hearing.  Just worked with a Duck caller.  He tried some of the his calls in our office and outside in the parking lot.  Thought the GSP15 were very good for protection but the calls sounded so much better using the Musician's digital hearing protection.  He felt like he could perceive the small nuances of the call better with them then the GSP15.  Will not give quite as much hearing protection from blasts but will let him call better.