Archive for hearing-aid-resources

Cognitive Decline and Dementia

Eight years ago in 2010, Dr. Frank Lin,MD, PhD, and other collaborators published, at that time, new research regarding links between hearing loss and developing dementia.  Dr. Frank Lin, MD, PhD, is an otolaryngologist and epidemiologist at John Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore.  Dr. Lin, as an ENT and epidemiologist, one who studies patterns of frequency and the causes and effects of diseases in human populations, is a perfect fit for this type of research.  These findings were published in John Hopkins Journal of Medicine.

The study found three links where hearing loss threatens healthy brain function which can lead to dementia.  Cognitive resources, brain atrophy and social isolation, all influencing someone who has an age related hearing loss.

Cognitive decline materializes as the brain is constantly coping with sounds and words that are harder to hear and process.  The second link, brain atrophy, “People with hearing loss show less brain activity on functional MRI scans when listening to complex sentences.  Poorer hearers also had less gray matter in the auditory cortex suggesting that areas of the brain related to auditory processing may show accelerated atrophy when hearing ability declines.” (Pennmedicine.org)  Social isolation, the third theory, is perhaps the easiest to understand. Social support is an important part of healthy living.  When understanding conversation is challenging and exhausting, it is easier to retreat into isolation.

In conclusion,  “If you want to address hearing loss well,” Lin says, “you want to do it sooner rather than later. If hearing loss is potentially contributing to these differences we’re seeing on MRI, you want to treat it before these brain structural changes take place.”

And Jonathan Peelle, PhD, research associate in the Department of Penn Neurology suggests, “As hearing ability declines with age, interventions such as hearing aids should be considered not only to improve hearing but to preserve the brain.”

References:

John Hopkins University, HopkinsMedicine.org

Pennmedicine.org

 

Ears 2 U Hearing Aid Services Special Event

Hearing Problems… or maybe just earwax? Join us on July 30 & 31 in Pagosa Springs, August 1, 2, 3 in Alamosa to FIND OUT!

SPECAL GUEST! Nationally Known Hearing Aid Expert, Kristen Schardein will be available for our special event – AT NO CHARGE!!

We’ll look into your ear canal with our Video Otoscope. As you are watching the TV screen we’ll do a complete inspection of your ear canal and eardrum.  If there is any amount of wax blockage, you’ll know immediately.

FREE! ***Video Otoscope Exam. It may just be wax blockage. ***Computer Hearing Screening with a licensed hearing professional to see what you hear and what you don’t. ***Hearing Aid Inspection. All makes and models. ***Trade-in Appraisal of your old hearing aids. ***Package of Hearing Aid Batteries.  Limit one free pack per family.

Preview the latest technology from Starkey. WE PROVIDE HEARING SOLUTIONS TO MEET EVERYONE’S BUDGET. Financing Available for those who qualify.

 

MUSE iQ: Introducing Synergy, powering Starkey’s latest hearing technology Muse.  Synergy is hearing technology made for the next generation  of patients. Muse are hearing aids made for life.

 

 

 

Introducing Halo iQ: The made for iPhone Hearing Aid.  Go anywhere and do everything with Starkey’s breakthrough Made for iPhone® Hearing Aids and TruLink®, the easy-to-use hearing control app. These advanced new hearing aids enhance every listening experience, and connect easily to your iPhone, iPad®, iPod touch® and Apple Watch® via the TruLink app. Enjoy phone calls, music, videos and more streamed directly into your ears with pristine sound quality — no background buzzing and whistling.

R.S.V.P. today to reserve your opportunity to join us for this special event. We are a family locally operated business since 2005. Our Pagosa Springs event dates are July 30th & 31st.  Alamosa is August 1, 2, 3. 

Ears 2 U Hearing Aid Services: Pagosa Springs: (970)731-4554

Ears 2 U Hearing Aid Services: Alamosa: (719)587-9820

WE LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING YOU THERE, AND AS ALWAYS, THANK YOU FOR YOUR BUSINESS!

 

Improving your life with hearing aids

Let’s face it.  We make decisions regarding our health and lifestyle choices everyday.  Whether it is the food we consume, the physical exercise we do or don’t do, smoking, alcohol use, and even our social interaction, all affect our well being.  Although there are many health decisions we engage in, our hearing ability is major.  Interaction with our family, friends and community can suffer due to hearing challenges. If you or someone you love is delaying the decision to purchase hearing aids, consider this.  You are investing in your quality of life when you invest in hearing aids.

The following is an article I would like to share with you, found on starkey.com.

How will a hearing aid improve my quality of life?

“Treatment of hearing loss has been shown to improve:

  • Communication in relationships
  • Intimacy and warmth in family relationships
  • Ease in communication
  • Earning power
  • Sense of control over your life
  • Social participation
  • Emotional stability

Hearing aids can provide valuable benefits to improve your quality of life in a number of important ways. They can help you to:

Hear better in situations that are important to you – Fully participate with family, friends and co-workers again.

Stay connected – Hearing loss can lead to isolation and depression. With hearing aids, you can connect with the world and regain your quality of life.

Avoid becoming a burden to those around you – Wearing a hearing aid can be a courtesy to others, reducing frustration and eliminating the need for them to raise their voices or repeat things to you.

Identify speech in noise – Hearing aids can improve the brain’s ability to process speech when there is competing background noise, like in a restaurant or crowd. Hearing aid technology continues to improve and hearing better in noise is a primary focus of the current hearing aid technology.

Stay sharp – Hearing loss contributes to reductions in cognitive and communication abilities — it can even be misdiagnosed as dementia. Hearing aids can help improve your abilities, keeping you on top of your game.

Be alert to what’s happening around you – Hearing enables you to sense alarms, sirens, traffic, telephones, doorbells and other important signals at home, work and in the community.

Work longer and earn more – Studies clearly demonstrate that untreated hearing loss can impact your success on the job, with even a mild hearing loss reducing earning potential. Using hearing aids can help you communicate successfully on the job so you maintain your productivity, professional standing and income.”

Stay connected and confident. Make that investment in YOU!

Scott Erickson, Owner, Ears 2 U Hearing Aid Services

 

The Power of Rechargeable Hearing Aids

If you or a loved one is holding off your decision to invest in hearing aids due to poor vision or dexterity, rechargeable hearing aids could be your solution.  Hearing aids, as medical devices, can greatly improve your daily hearing experience. Rechargeable options is one of those improvements.  Hearing aids require a lot of power to function.  Due to todays advanced digital technology, hearing aids are computers in your ears and the battery is a key factor in their performance.

Rechargeable aids eliminates the task of frequently changing the battery.  It also phases out the chore of opening the battery door on the aid to extend the life of the disposable battery.  Instead, you are recharging your actual devices at night in their charging unit without opening the battery door.  They automatically turn off in the charger when they are fully charged.  In the morning, your aids are ready for your day, and you can confidently go about your daily activities.

No matter what level your hearing loss, rechargeable hearing aids are suitable for you.  Whether you are an experienced user or just realizing you need hearing help, rechargeable options are hugely popular.  The user friendliness of the charging unit has helped those who previously were concerned they could not properly handle the small hearing aid battery.

In conclusion, with todays advanced technology in the hearing industry, there are many choices for those who need hearing assistance.  If you or a loved one have been dragging your feet due to the hassle of changing batteries in hearing aids, help has arrived.  Rechargeable hearing aids are an option worth looking into.

Starkey’s Rechargeable Hearing Aids: Rechargeable Muse iQ

synergy-charger-with-hearing-aids

Our new best-in-class Muse iQ Rechargeable hearing aids last 20 percent longer than other systems, are 30 percent smaller and are 100 percent easy to use. Plus, with the industry’s longest lasting charge, your hearing aids will always be ready to go.

 

Seniors, Dementia & Hearing Aids

Recently there has been a lot of discussion and research published in regard to hearing aids possibly preventing dementia.  As a hearing care professional, many questions regarding this issue are asked daily by my patients and their families.  I am re-publishing this article by Robert Preidt, a HealthDay reporter found on WebMD News, to help answer some of their questions.

Scott Erickson, Ears 2 U Hearing Aid Services

Hearing Aids May Help Keep Seniors Mind Sharp by WebMD News from HealthDay

Hearing Aids May Help Keep Seniors’ Minds Sharp

Ability to stay engaged in conversation could help ward off dementia, study suggests

By Robert Preidt, HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, April 27, 2016 (HealthDay News) — A hearing aid may do more than help you hear better: New research suggests that the devices might also help prevent mental decline in elderly people with hearing loss.”  We know that hearing aids can keep older adults with hearing loss more socially engaged by providing an important bridge to the outside world,” Dr. Anil Lalwani, a professor of otolaryngology/head and neck surgery at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City, said in a center news release.”In this study, we wanted to determine if they could also slow the effects of aging on cognitive function,” he added.  The study included 100 adults, aged 80 to 99, with hearing loss. The 34 who regularly used a hearing aid had much better scores on tests of mental function than those who didn’t use a hearing aid.  The researchers also found that mental function was directly linked to hearing ability in those who didn’t use a hearing aid.The study was published online April 25 in the American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry.”Our study suggests that using a hearing aid may offer a simple, yet important, way to prevent or slow the development of dementia by keeping adults with hearing loss engaged in conversation and communication,” Lalwani said. More than half of people older than 75 have hearing loss. But, fewer than 15 percent of those with hearing loss use a hearing aid, the researchers said.Previous research has shown that hearing-impaired elderly people are at increased risk for fall- and accident-related death, social isolation and dementia, compared to those without hearing loss.Previous studies have also found that hearing aid use can improve hearing loss-related social, functional and emotional problems, the researchers said.

 
WebMD News from HealthDay

Benefits of Hearing Aid Users

Recently I spoke with a friend of mine who is 80+ and lives alone.  He was sharing how important it was for him to remain in his own home and continue to be independent for as long as possible.  His confidence and sense of security with his decision to stay in his current residence comes from being able to hear. He also participates at his local senior center.  He wears his hearing aids daily.

The following article from American Academy of Audiology discusses the positive benefits of hearing aid users.  A sense of independance and social interactions are included.  More information can be found from The National Council on Aging. https://www.ncoa.org/

Untreated Hearing Loss Linked to Depression, Social Isolation in Seniors

Untreated hearing loss has serious emotional and social consequences for older persons, according to a major new study by The National Council on the Aging (NCOA). The study was conducted by the Seniors Research Group, an alliance between NCOA and Market Strategies, Inc.

“This study debunks the myth that untreated hearing loss in older persons is a harmless condition,” said James Firman, EdD, president and CEO of The National Council on the Aging. The survey of 2,300 hearing impaired adults age 50 and older found that those with untreated hearing loss were more likely to report depression, anxiety, and paranoia and were less likely to participate in organized social activities, compared to those who wear hearing aids.

Hearing loss is one of the most prevalent chronic conditions in the United States, affecting more than nine million Americans over the age of 65 and 10 million Americans age 45 to 64. But about three out of five older Americans with hearing loss and six out of seven middle-aged Americans with hearing loss do not use hearing aids.

Consequences of Untreated Hearing Loss

The survey found that significantly more of the seniors with untreated hearing loss (those who do not wear hearing aids) reported feelings of sadness or depression that lasted two or more weeks during the previous years. Among respondents with more severe hearing loss, 30 percent of non-users of hearing aids reported these sad feelings, com-pared to 22 percent of hearing aid users.

Another measure of emotional distress is the perception that “other people get angry at me for no reason,” which psychologists often identify as an indicator of paranoia.

Older non-users were more likely to agree with the statement “people get angry with me usually for no reason” (14 percent of users vs. 23 percent of non-users). Among those with more severe hearing loss, the difference was even greater—14 percent for users vs. 36 percent for non-users.

Because social isolation is a serious problem for some older people, the study also examined social behavior and found that people who don’t use hearing aids are considerably less likely to participate in social activities. Among respondents with more severe hearing loss, 42 percent of hearing aid users participate regularly in social activities com- pared to just 32 percent of non-users.

Carolyn Holmes, PhD, of the Seniors Research Group said, “This survey is groundbreaking not only in the large size of the sample but also in the inclusion of 2,090 close family members or friends of the hearing- impaired respondents who were asked a parallel set of questions.”

Benefits of Treatment

Hearing aid users reported significant improvements in many areas of their lives, ranging from their relationships at home and sense of independence to their social life and their sex life. In virtually every dimension measured, the families of hearing aid users also noted the improvements but were even more likely than the users to report improvements.

Improvement Area Improvement Reported by Hearing Aid User (%) Improvement Reported by User’s Family (%)
Relations at home 56 66
Feelings about self 50 60
Life overall 48 62
Relations with children, grandchildren 40 52
Mental health 36 39
Self-confidence 39 46
Sense of safety 34 37
Social life 34 41
Relations at work 26 43
Sex life 8 NA

October is National Protect Your Hearing Month

Home

October is “National Protect Your Hearing Month.”

At Ears 2 U Hearing Aid Services, we do our best to educate the public regarding their hearing health and how to protect their hearing.  During the month of October, we increase those efforts.

“Loudness is measured in what’s called decibels (dB).  Over time, any sound that’s 85 decibels or higher can cause hearing loss – or other hearing problems, like tinnitus (a ringing sound in your ears that won’t go away).  The louder a sound is, and the longer you listen to it, the more it can damage your hearing.

So how can you tell when a noise is hurting your hearing? If there’s so much noise around you that you need to talk extra loud when your friends are only a few feet away, it’s probably hurting your hearing. Time to bring out the earplugs — or go somewhere quieter!”

Click on the following link which has been provided by NIH.  You can experience a noise meter to see how loud different sounds are – and how you can protect your ears when you’re around them.

Remember: Exposures above 85 dB can be hazardous to your hearing.

 

https://www.nidcd.nih.gov/health/listen-infographic

Hearing Loss Common Myths

If you are struggling to follow in everyday conversations, or your loved ones are complaining that your radio or television is too loud, take action.  There are positive solutions to keep you involved with your family and community.  Do not let these common myths prevent you from being engaged in your everyday life.

Re-posting this informative article from HearingLink.org.

Man, Old, View, Question Mark, Direction

Myth #1 – If I had a hearing impairment I would know about it

The truth is that hearing loss tends be gradual, and the signs can be very subtle at first. We also have an in-built ability to adapt, so self-diagnosing a hearing problem can be difficult.

Myth #2 – Living with hearing loss is no big deal

Wrong. Hearing loss can have a huge impact on your everyday life. Psychological effects like frustration, social withdrawal and depression are common – even for those with mild hearing impairment.

Myth #3 – I can get my hearing loss treated with minor surgery

Although some types of hearing loss can be treated with medical or surgical intervention, this only applies to between 5-10% of adults.

Myth #4 – I may have one bad ear, but the other works perfectly fine

Almost all patients who believe they have one ‘good’ ear actually have two ‘bad’ ears – it’s just that one is worse than the other.  Most types of hearing loss affect both ears fairly equally, and about 90% of patients are in need of hearing aids for both ears.

Myth #5 – Hearing loss only affects ‘old’ people

Not true. Only about 35% of people who suffer from hearing loss are over the age of 64. Hearing loss can affect all age groups.

Myth #6 – My hearing loss cannot be treated

In the past it may have been true that there was nothing that could be done to help your hearing loss. Today, though, almost all patients with some form of hearing loss can be helped to some extent by some extent by hearing aids.

Myth #7 – Only people with serious hearing loss need hearing aids

Hearing aids work by amplifying sounds, so can help anyone who has a form of hearing loss – however mild it is.

Myth #8 – Hearing aids will make everything too loud

As hearing aids are essentially amplifiers, it used to be the case that the wearer would have to turn up the volume to hear soft speech – which would mean normal conversation would then be too loud. Nowadays, though, hearing aids are much more intuitive and can control the level of sound automatically. Indeed, many of them don’t even have volume controls any more.

Don’t let these common myths and misconceptions keep you from seeking the help you need.  As trained and experienced professionals, we are here to assist you stay in the conversations of life.

Scott Erickson, Ears 2 U Hearing Aid Center

Why do hearing aids & services from a professional cost more?

Updated on March 7, 2018 by Scott Erickson, Owner Ears 2 U Hearing Aid Services

 I have had many conversations with our new and existing patients who are trying to make an educated decision on the amount of money they need to spend on new Hearing Aids.

Regardless of the severity of your hearing loss, in a nutshell, not hearing in your everyday environment is a handicap. Because hearing instruments are not a quick fix like glasses are for vision, in my opinion, consultations and follow-up adjustments with a professional provider, along with hearing aid maintenance for the life of the hearing aid is the key factor for a patient’s success.

As a professional hearing aid provider who has been helping patients just like you for thirty plus years, who also wears hearing aids, I understand the process of what it takes to be a long-term, successful hearing aid wearer.  My goal is to improve your outcome with hearing aids.

When you make a hearing aid investment, it is best to factor into the cost what is included in your purchase.  Are the hearing aids providing you with state-of-the-art technology to help you understand speech in noise, or are they just amplifiers?  How many appointments are provided for professional clinical hearing screenings, computer adjustments, clean and checks, wax removal, and additional consultations at no cost to you for the life of the hearing aids?

No additional cost to you for these visits is the key.

When reviewing your less expensive options, please consider this. With a pay as you go agreement, many patients who invested in a contract which only provides a limited amount of free appointments stop the needed professional maintenance hearing aids require. Wax, hair, body oil, and every day environmental challenges tax the hearing aid’s performance. Today’s hearing aids are computers in your ears! Professional clean, checks and adjustments are a must for success!

Unfortunately, too many hearing instruments bought with a limited amount of appointments provided, wind up in a drawer instead of being worn. The patient is frustrated and gives up. Patients who have had this experience conclude hearing aids just don’t work and are not worth the effort. Hearing is worth the effort! Professional office consultations with a qualified hearing specialist coaching you can make a difference. Adjusting to hearing aids is a process and every patient has individual needs. Knowing the number of visits someone requires to be successful varies.

Lastly, I would like to share the experience of one of my patients who purchased hearing aids from me nine years ago. His hearing had changed and he needed his aids adjusted. After being rescreened and the hearing aids were computer programmed to his new hearing loss, he was amazed these services were included in the initial cost of his hearing contract. That is one of the benefits of including services for the life of the hearing aids. Unlimited adjustments and professional services.

Please help me, help you, keep your hearing aids out of the drawer and into your ears! I hope this commentary helps answer your questions.

As always, thank you for your business and looking forward to seeing you soon.

Scott

 

Special Event: Is it hearing loss or just ear wax?

Special guest Jon Wilson, an Audiologist with Unitron, will be joining me for a three day event to present new technology and ways to optimize your communication abilities.  Jon has over 22 years experience helping people hear better, with a passion for fitting hearing aids and helping rehabilitate hearing impairments. 

You may be asking yourself, is it hearing loss or just ear wax?  We can help you answer that question.  You are invited to a FREE HEARING AID CONSULTATION.  Now, with state-of-the-art fiber optic otoscope technology, you can find out what’s happening inside your ear. 

We will also be introducing the latest in RECHARGABLE hearing aids.

Unitron is proud to introduce the MoxiTM

Moxi_Fit_R

Fit R, the worlds smallest rechargeable hearing aid. An easy, overnight charge keeps you hearing all day with no interruptions. Now you can have comfort, style and convenience all in one package.

We invite you to take the first step towards better hearing by calling us today.  This is a three day event only!

 

 

  • Tuesday, August 8th

  • Wednesday, August 9th

  • Thursday, August 10th

Call us today to schedule your appointment.

Ears 2 U Hearing Aid Services

Alamosa, Colorado (719)587-9820

Pagosa Springs, Colorado (970)731-4554