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Senior Citizen's Guide to Cleveland

Better Hearing is Closer Than You Think

More than 36 million Americans (11% of the population) have hearing loss. Although hearing loss is often associated with aging 6 out of 10 people with hearing loss are under retirement age. Hearing loss is present in newborns, children, teenagers, young adults and adults under the age of 65.

Studies have linked untreated hearing loss to:

Common Causes of Hearing Loss

As we age, our ears are exposed to a lifetime of noises such as lawnmowers, telephones, industrial machinery, and recorded and live music. Many of these sounds occur at loud and potentially dangerous levels. Although some people are born with hearing loss, most acquire hearing loss later in life. Causes for acquired hearing loss include genetic predisposition, ear disease, noise exposure (including music, occupational, military, and recreational) ototoxic medication, head trauma and others).

Treatment for Hearing Loss

There are many treatment options for hearing loss. Your Audiologist will make recommendations based on the results of your Hearing Evaluation. They may include:

  1. Hearing aids
  2. Referral to an Ear Nose & Throat Physician if there is a medical or surgical solution.
  3. Assistive devices like an amplified telephone, TV system or alert system.
  4. Aural Rehabilitation programs like LACE a computerized, interactive listening raining program which can improve understanding speech in difficult hearing environments like restaurants, crowds or groups of people. Think of this as physical therapy for your ears.

Hearing aids are more automatic and easier to use than in the past. They are also more compatible with cell phones and TV. Here are just a few of the recent developments in hearing aids:

Lyric: Worn 24/7 for up to 4 months, this unique extended wear hearing device is totally invisible. There are no batteries to change and daily insertion and removal are not required.

Mini Canal Aids: There are now deeply inserted removable hearing aids which give you the cosmetic advantage of extended wear devices, but can be removed and inserted by the hearing aid user.

Wireless Connectivity: Many hearing aids can also serve as a blue-tooth receiver for signals streamed from your cell phone or TV. No need to wear bulky Bluetooth headsets!

Rechargeable: Some hearing aids may be placed in a sleek recharging unit to recharge over night. No more hassles changing batteries!

Remote Controls: Many hearing aids are adjustable by a small remote control, so you don’t need to fumble with small controls on the hearing aids.

Mini Behind-the-Ear Aids: These inconspicuous hearing aids hide behind your ears and a very thin clear tube connects to a dome in the ear canal. No more blocked up feeling in your ears.

If you suspect a hearing problem, the next step is to have your hearing evaluated by an Audiologist. An evaluation of your hearing is a painless procedure which measures your ears reception of sound and how your ear and your brain process speech. A detailed medical and hearing history will be taken. Your situational difficulties will be noted and addressed in the recommendations given by your audiologist.

There are 915 audiologists licensed by the State of Ohio, 98 are in Cuyahoga County. Discover how you can improve your quality of life! See an audiologist.

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