Tinnitus is widely discussed all over the internet but the trouble is finding information that is reliable. Today Dr. Hapka talks about all of the misinformation he has found on Facebook regarding tinnitus.
Dr. Jessee discusses the changes in rechargeable technology over the last few months and how it is helping people who have dexterity concerns. Rechargeable technology is now more reliable than ever and we are excited to provide this new feature to new and previous hearing device users.
If you’ve been to an audiologist for a hearing test, you’ve probably heard your hearing described in words: “Mild sloping to moderate,” “moderately-severe,” “mild to profound high frequency.” At first, these terms might seem a little confusing. What does it mean to have “mild sloping to moderate” hearing loss? It might seem like it would be much easier if we could just say, “You have 30% hearing loss,” or “You have 40% of your hearing left.” And you’re right, that would be much easier. But it would also be wildly inaccurate!
If you’re looking for the best way to quickly sum up your hearing to a friend or a loved one, ask your audiologist to show you which speech sounds you have the most trouble with. Your audiologist can plot your hearing thresholds on a graph that shows which sounds give you trouble and which ones you still hear well. That way, when a friend asks you about your hearing, you can say with confidence, “I have trouble hearing soft consonants, like insert sounds here but I can hear most other sounds well. That’s why I can hear people speaking but I don’t always understand what they are saying.”
Hearing is an incredibly complicated sense, but your understanding of your hearing loss doesn’t have to be! If you’re still unsure about your hearing loss, ask your audiologist—knowledge is power!
Tinnitus is the perception of ringing or noise in the ears when there is none present. Tinnitus is a symptom of an underlying condition like age-related hearing loss, injury to the ear or a disorder of the circulatory system.
Tinnitus often presents as the following sounds: ringing, buzzing, hissing, whining, roaring, and/or clicking. Tinnitus can be a low pitched roar ranging to a high pitched squeal. It can be present in only one ear, more predominate in one ear, or both ears.
Typical causes of tinnitus include: age-related hearing loss, noise exposure, cerumen impaction, or otosclerosis. Treatment typically includes treating the underlying condition through wearing hearing aids or by reducing or masking the noise to make it less noticeable (through a tinnitus masker).
At Good Sound Audiology we specialize in assessment and treatment of tinnitus. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at at (480) 497-0780.
Hearing loss is one of the most prevalent chronic health conditions in the world. According to the World Health Organization, 466 million people have disabling hearing loss. Hearing loss can present in all age ranges; however, hearing loss typically affects the aging population.
On average, one in every three people over the age of 65 have hearing loss. Traditional adult onset hearing loss present as a loss of hearing sensitivity and reduced speech understanding, which greatly impacts one’s ability to communicate effectively. Not only does hearing loss negatively impact one’s ability to communicate, but it also can affect one’s psychosocial health. Several significant relationships have been found between hearing loss, anxiety, depression, and loneliness. Although these associations are important, the one that is most relevant is the relationship between hearing loss and cognitive decline.
When someone has hearing loss, auditory sounds are not being transmitted to the brain properly. This lack of auditory stimulation leads to a cortical restructuring of the brain. This, over time, can reduce one’s ability to discern speech. If someone with hearing loss ignores their hearing and communication difficulties, their ability to differentiate speech sounds also becomes worse. Research has shown that the decrease in one’s word understanding ability is correlated to cognitive decline.
Treating hearing loss with hearing aids has been shown to minimize or reduce hearing loss related cognitive decline. Wearing hearing aids can also improve speech understanding (which can lead to increased confidence and social participation) and improve one’s quality of life.
If you believe you or a loved one has hearing loss, but do not wear hearing aids, check out what our current hearing aid users say about how hearing aids have significantly improved their quality of life. If you have questions or would like to schedule a hearing evaluation call (480) 497-0780.
The ear is a completely separate environment from the rest of your body and the outside world. The inside of your ear is a hot and humid place. Typically what we find in our ears is ear wax or medical professionals call it cerumen. You have two glands in your ear, one produces a waxy substance and the other produces oils. This combination creates a yellow brown wax that we find in our ears. It may be gross to think about wax being in our ears, but it is there for a reason. Ear wax helps protect our ears from bacteria, fungus, dirt, debris and even bugs! It is also there to keep our ear canals from drying out and moisturizing the skin. Many people try cleaning the wax out of their ears, however the ears will clean themselves out on their own if you let them. Over time the natural migration of skin will push ear wax out of your ear. You may never see it happen, but as you sleep and bathe little bits of wax and skin come out of your ears.
If you use q-tips to clean your ears you should stop now!
Q-tips tend to cause more problems. When you put a q-tip in your ear you get a little bit of wax on the end of the q-tip and think you got it out, but what you really did is push most of the ear wax further down your ear canal. Over time this can lead to impacted ear wax in your ear canal. You will plug up your ears and you can cause a temporary hearing loss, not to mention at this point the only way the impacted ear wax will come out of your ear is to have it removed by an audiologist or your primary care physician. Not only can q-tips cause impacted wax, but they rip the delicate skin of your ear canal causing red, dry, itchy, irritated skin which in turn make people use more q-tips to itch their irritated ear canals. If you have been using q-tips schedule an appointment with us to have the status of your ears evaluated. Besides q-tips, people try putting other items in their ears to clean or itch them. Some of these items include bobby pins, safety pins, keys and pens. Putting items into your ears is dangerous because if you go too far into the ear you can puncture your eardrum! Puncturing your eardrum is extremely painful and will cause hearing loss. If this were to ever happen to you, you should seek medical attention and in the best case scenario the eardrum will heal, however depending on the amount of damage caused the eardrum may never heal completely. If you have put something in your ears and hearing loss has occurred schedule an appointment today to have a complete hearing evaluation performed.
So what do you do about ear wax, how do you clean it out?
If you leave your ears alone they will push the wax out by themselves. If you are a person who produces a lot of ear wax or it has become impacted you can purchase wax removal kits from an audiologist or from a pharmacy. Good Sound Audiology has wax removal kits available for purchase and our staff will be more than happy to provide you with personal instructions for proper use. If purchase elsewhere, follow the instructions on the kit, after the designated time of use the wax may be gone completely or mostly gone in which you would no longer need to continue to use the kit. If a significant amount of ear wax remains in the ear or you are unsure if it came out, have an audiologist or your primary care physician take a look in your ears because they can confirm if it is still in your ears or remove the remaining ear wax. If you need to have wax removed schedule an appointment with one of our audiologists.