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Tips To Keep Your Hearing Aids Safe This Summer

Summer is finally here! Warmer weather, lighter nights and more time spent outside, isn’t that what summer is all about? While your hearing aids will help you catch the conversation during the summer fun, it’s important to understand how to protect your devices and keep them working at their best.

Helpful Summer Safety Tips for Hearing Aid Users

Many of us will spend a great deal more time outside during the summer season. Activities may include swimming, watersports, trips to the beach or sports outdoors. You can still enjoy these activities if you wear hearing aids with these simple tips.

  • Plan Ahead: Think about the activities that you’re going to engage in. Have you looked at what the weather conditions are expected to be? Humidity, dust, intense heat, sweat and water can all potentially damage your hearing aids. Plan ahead, and ensure you pack the necessary accessories for your devices.
  • Store Safely: Store your hearing aids safely overnight. You may want to consider a dehumidifying box if you’re in a very humid environment or if you are getting very sweaty. This will help to remove any excess moisture, keeping your hearing aids dry.
  • Protect Your Hearing Aids From Chemicals: If you’re applying suntan lotion or perhaps applying bug spray, remove your hearing aids. The chemicals could potentially damage or clog up your hearing aids.
  • Check Hat Fit: If you wear Behind The Ear (BTE) aids, you’ll want to allow extra room in any hats you may be wearing. Consider using a safety clip if you are wearing the hearing aids.
  • Clean Regularly: Clean your hearing aid regularly with a cleaning kit.
  • Avoid Getting Your Aids Wet: If you know you’re going to be swimming or showering, or if you’re planning water based activities, you must remove your hearing aids. Although many have water resistant features, they may not be fully waterproof. If in doubt, check the IP rating of your device which will inform you of the level of water resistance. Alternatively, come in and speak with the hearing care professionals at Sutton Hearing & Balance.
  • Don’t Leave Your Hearing Aids In Direct Sun: If you won’t be wearing your devices, ensure you store them safely. Avoid exposure to direct sunlight or heat. Also, keep the batteries away from direct sunlight or extreme heat as they may become activated if the stickers peel themselves off.
  • Remember Your Spare Batteries!

By following the above tips, you’ll be able to get out there and enjoy yourself this summer while keeping your hearing aids safe. If you’d like to discuss further, or if it’s time to book in your annual hearing assessment, why not book an appointment today? Give our team a call on (212) 786-5741 or click here to request an appointment online.

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Can Hearing Aids Help with Tinnitus?

Tinnitus is the perception of sound where none is actually present. Often described as a ringing in the ear, tinnitus often manifests as a ringing, buzzing or humming in the ears. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, nearly 15% of the general public — over 50 million Americans — experience some form of tinnitus. Of these, 20 million struggle with burdensome chronic tinnitus, while 2 million experience extreme or debilitating symptoms of tinnitus.

If you are a sufferer of tinnitus, you may be asking what treatment options are available to you. Although there is no known cure for tinnitus, there are means to relieve the symptoms. Today, we’re looking at whether hearing aids can help with tinnitus.

What is Tinnitus?

First, let’s explore what tinnitus actually is. It is the term for hearing a sound in your ears when there is not actually any external sound present. Most cases of tinnitus are ‘subjective’, meaning that only the person suffering from tinnitus can hear the sound. Commonly described as a ringing in the ears, sufferers may also experience hissing, whistling, buzzing, chirping or even roaring in their ears.

Most sufferers of tinnitus will experience mild, intermittent symptoms. Others will experience more prolonged and severe symptoms. However, one thing connects all sufferers – the desire to minimize the symptoms of the tinnitus.

Causes of Tinnitus

Although there is no definitive cause of tinnitus, there are a variety of factors known to trigger or worsen the symptoms. These include:

  • Hearing Loss: According to the Hearing Health Foundation, about 90% of individuals who experience tinnitus also have hearing loss. For some, the brain compensates for hearing loss by turning up an “inner volume control” to amplify otherwise unnoticeable sounds. So, symptoms begin, often with a cycle of emotional distress.
  • Loud Noise: If you’ve ever been to a loud rock concert, you’re likely aware of the muffled feeling in your ears when you walk away. In some cases, you may experience symptoms of tinnitus after exposure to loud noise (such as those in a rock concert). Loud noise can damage the tiny hairs in your inner ear, known as the cilia. Damage to the cilia can result in noise-induced hearing loss. If you’d like to learn more about how noise can impact your hearing health, check our out blog on Understanding & Preventing Noise Induced Hearing Loss.
  • Ototoxic Medications: Some medications, such as anti-inflammatories, antidepressants and antibiotics can be harmful to your inner ear. Known as ototoxic medication, if you suspect that your medication is impacting your hearing health, we recommend booking in an appointment with your general medical practitioner to discuss further.
  • Health Conditions: Tinnitus has been linked with a variety of health conditions, such as cardiovascular disease, thyroid problems, high blood pressure (hypertension), and more. To rule out an underlying health condition for your tinnitus, we recommend  booking in an appointment with your general medical practitioner.

Can Hearing Aids Help With Tinnitus?

Although there is no ‘cure’ for tinnitus, there are ways to minimize the symptoms. As many cases of tinnitus are associated with a hearing loss, using hearing aids can help treat the hearing loss and subsequently reduce the symptoms of tinnitus.

Oftentimes, the similarities between the type of hearing loss and the tinnitus symptoms that you experience can be remarkable. For example, if you have a high-frequency hearing loss, you may experience high-pitched ringing from tinnitus.

If you are suffering from tinnitus and would like to explore how we can help relieve your symptoms, get in touch with us today. The hearing care professionals at Sutton Hearing & Balance would be happy to go through any questions you may have, and determine if hearing aids can help to reduce the symptoms of tinnitus that you are experiencing. Give our team a call on (212) 786-5741 or click here to request an appointment online.

Posted by Admin

How IFTTT Enabled Devices Can Help Your Hearing

You may already own appliances or electronics with in-built smart technology, such as your phone, TV or thermostat. Home automation technology or the Internet of things allows you to control many commonly used electronics to make them behave more efficiently or in a manner that better suits your daily lifestyle. However, you may be surprised to learn that this technology is also available in certain hearing aids. Not sure what an IFTTT enabled device is, or what the uses are? Here are some key details and benefits to help demonstrate how an IFTTT enabled device may help your hearing.

What is IFTTT?

If This Then That (IFTTT) is an online service that connects smart devices and apps through simple conditional statements. Breaking the statement down, ‘If This’ is a trigger, for example a weather app signaling rain, and ‘Then This’ is the action, which would be a notification automatically sent to your phone reminding you to take an umbrella with you. This allows you to set up automated responses and controls between multiple smart objects and online platforms, providing you have Internet connectivity.

How does this work with a hearing aid?

You may not think that a hearing aid counts as smart technology, however by choosing an IFTTT enabled device, you can sync your hearing aid with a number of devices to help with everyday tasks. Please be aware that this software only works with certain devices and apps, a list of which can be found on the IFTTT website.

What would I need to do?

Before purchasing an IFTTT enabled device, you will need to make sure that you have the required internet access, devices and apps. You will then need to create an IFTTT account and install the software or app that is required for the smart hearing aid, as well as any devices you wish to sync it with.

What can I use it for?

As long as you have access to the internet and the relevant devices, you can create a wide range of conditional statements that sync your smart hearing aid to everyday smart objects. For example, if you own a doorbell that has a qualifying app, you can set up a statement that alerts you through your hearing aid any time someone rings the doorbell. When the laundry is done, you could get a voice alert in the hearing aid telling you to go get it. With so many appliances now available with smart technology built in, you could have numerous actions set up with your TV, washing machine, central heating and more. You could even use this feature to tell you via email message if a loved ones hearing aid is running low on batteries.

Whilst smart technology has been designed to make life easier, you may still find yourself unsure as to how this can work with your hearing aid. If you wish to find out more about how an IFTTT enabled device can benefit you, give our hearing care professionals a call on (212) 786-5741 or click here to request an appointment online.

Posted by Admin

Tips on When to Get a Hearing Aid

Do You Really Need A Hearing Aid?

After being diagnosed with hearing loss, many individuals will wait months, if not years, before finally getting a hearing aid. There are many reasons that people delay getting a hearing aid, including denial, appearance and cost.

Individuals with hearing loss may also feel that their hearing is still acceptable, and therefore justify delaying getting a hearing aid. But ‘acceptable’ hearing may still be improved upon with the help of a hearing aid.

When Should You Get A Hearing Aid?

According to the MarkeTrak VIII survey on hearing impairment in the US, conducted in 2009 by the American hearing expert, Sergei Kochkin, 55.4% of Americans cited ‘my hearing loss has worsened’ as the reason for them deciding to get their first hearing aid.

There are a number of indicators that your hearing loss may be impacting your quality of life. Some of the more common symptoms can include:

  • Your friends and family tell you that you need to get your hearing checked
  • You struggle to hear in social situations with multiple people talking at once
  • You prefer the TV or radio at a higher volume than you used to
  • You often complain that people are mumbling
  • You have trouble understanding people when they are not looking directly at you
  • Your hearing loss has reduced your confidence
  • Conversations feel they they require your full effort and attention
  • You ask people to repeat themselves and often say “what?”
  • You prefer to use closed captions when watching television
  • You prefer to use the speakerphone feature during phone calls
  • You miss calls because you no longer hear the phone ringing
  • You no longer participate in social activities because of your difficulty hearing

The Benefits Of A Hearing Aid

There are many reasons that people will delay getting a hearing aid, but there are even better reasons to get one!

  1. Improved hearing! Hearing aids are the most common treatment for hearing loss. Increased confidence. When you can hear clearly, you’ll be more self-assured in restaurants, on the job, and in social and public settings.
  2. Improved relationships. Communication is the cornerstone of any relationship. Hearing clearly can facilitate communication and improve your relationships.
  3. Reduced risk of memory loss or dementia. Recent studies have shown a link between hearing loss and memory loss or dementia, as the brain is lacking the stimulation that comes from hearing. Hearing aids can help to mitigate this.
  4. More energy! Struggling to hear all day takes a great deal of energy for your brain. Hearing aids can help to reduce this mental fatigue, leaving you feel more energized throughout the day.
  5. Improved quality of life. 70% of respondents to a study in Germany identified that digital hearing aids improved their overall quality of life.
  6. Avoid impacting your earning potential. Studies have shown that untreated hearing loss can negatively impact your earning potential. Don’t let your wallet take the hit, when hearing aids can help!
  7. Improved safety. Avoid missing out on emergency sounds such as fire alarms or calls for help.

If you’re ready to speak to a hearing care professional about how a hearing aid can improve your quality of life, contact us at (212) 786-5741 today. At Sutton Hearing & Balance, we want to help you enjoy a fuller life through better hearing. Request your free hearing assessment now.

Posted by Admin

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