Decades ago, hearing aids were speakers attached to noise catching boxes that weighed several pounds and had large headphones that hooked over your entire ear. . Next came the bulky hearing aids that you probably remember your grandfather wearing. They looked like a small satellite attached to his head and usually squeaked and buzzed at the most inopportune times. Often, you were more likely to see these hearing aids on his nightstand or kitchen table because they worked intermittently and were uncomfortable to wear for long periods of time.
Audiologists have chosen a career that is both daunting in its responsibility and rewarding in its ability to transform lives. Audiologists help people uncover why they no longer hear everyday sounds and help bring those sounds and noises back to people who have often resigned themselves to a world of silence. Audiologists can change lives in a dramatic fashion.
It happened again. As the holidays approached, you found yourself overwhelmed with all of the holiday hustle and bustle. Between trimming the tree, buying gifts, and endless parties, your intention to finally see someone about your hearing issues got lost in the shuffle. Making an appointment with an audiologist kept getting pushed to the next day’s list, until you realized that you have let another year pass without taking care of your hearing loss.
New Year’s Day is upon us, along with all of the resolutions that we make. Even if you publicly say that you refuse to make resolutions, you probably intend to be healthier in 2017. If you do make resolutions, there is a good chance that they involve health, whether you want to lose weight, exercise more, lower your blood pressure, or anything else pertaining to improving your health. As you think about living a healthier lifestyle, have you considered your ears and your hearing? If taking care of your hearing is not on your list of New Year’s resolutions, consider making it one of them. Take action immediately, both to correct any uncorrected hearing loss and to take better care of your hearing now.
Living with hearing loss for a period of time caused me to forget all of the sounds that I had once taken for granted. When I purchased my hearing aids, my expectations were low. I wanted to hear the doorbell, and I wanted to clearly hear car horns and traffic noises. I did not dare hope to hear anything more than that, because I did not want to be disappointed. Putting my hearing aids into my ear canals changed my life instantly. Not only could I hear forgotten sounds, but I also experienced profound changes beyond the sounds.
Contrary to popular belief, hearing loss is not an inevitable part of growing older and you should be able to enjoy all the sounds of life for many decades. Hearing loss can be caused by many different factors. Whether you have hereditary hearing loss, damage from overexposure to loud noises, an untreated medical condition, or another cause, knowing the cause and type of loss improves your ability to treat it. Hearing loss can be divided into three main categories: Sensorineural, conductive, and mixed hearing loss. These categories are further broken down into the typical causes of hearing loss within each category.
As Betty tried to pull the standing rib roast out of the oven, she realized that two people were needed to lift the large dish. Calling to her husband for help, she got no response. Frustrated, Betty finally managed to heft the pan onto the counter, but not without spilling hot liquid on her arm and all over the floor. Worried that something might be wrong, she then went to check on him. In his recliner, the football game blaring, Paul seemed completely oblivious to her repeated calls. When she asked him why he didn’t answer, and why he had the game on so loud, Paul shrugged and said that he thought there was something wrong with the volume because it wasn’t as loud as it used to be.
Pat strained to hear what her daughter was saying as they spent the morning making pies and casseroles for the family’s Thanksgiving dinner. Trying to carry on a conversation over the noise of blenders and mixers was exhausting. Pat finally found herself just smiling and nodding because she didn’t want her daughter to become irritated every time she asked her to repeat something.
Imagine walking into a large discount superstore and picking out your eyeglasses with no prescription or professional to guide you. From a sea of different prescriptions for far-sightedness and near-sightedness, you figure out what prescription fits your eyesight best, and you leave with what feels right as you continue to shop.
Finding a good job and moving up the career ladder is a struggle almost all of us can relate to. Something that can make this struggle even more difficult is trying to climb the corporate ladder with untreated hearing loss. Hearing loss, whether it is mild or severe, can impact your career in several different ways, so treating it becomes important for both social and economic reasons.
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