Dive In To Hearing Aid Protection This Summer

One of the best ways to beat the heat of the Arizona summer is with water – lots of cool, blue water.

What feels refreshing to the body doesn’t feel so good to the hearing aids, however – excess moisture is one of the main problems for your listening devices. It can cause problems whether you’re swimming, boating or at the water park.

Audiology & Hearing Aid Center Arizona in Scottsdale offers the following tips to both beat the heat and protect your hearing aids this summer:

  1. Safe storage: Whenever you know you’ll be in or around the water, remove your hearing aids and put them in a dry, waterproof container. If you’re at the pool, keep it well away from the water. If you’re in a boat, try to put them in a protected place where water is unlikely to gather. If you don’t have anything else, a sealable plastic baggie should do the trick in a pinch – but they don’t always seal properly, so take caution.
  2. Buy a dryer: Accidents happen. If you excitedly execute a perfect cannonball into the pool before realizing your hearing aids are still in, all isn’t necessarily lost. After drying them off as much as possible, you can put them in a hearing aid dehumidifier, which acts as a dryer to remove moisture from the devices. They also kill germs and deodorize your hearing aids. If you’re around water often or your devices are subjected to condensation often, these items are a worthy investment.
  3. Use protective accessories: To protect your hearing aids while around water – not while swimming in it – you could use a protective device such as a sleeve or cord. A sleeve, made of water-resistant spandex nylon, fits over the instrument to protect it from water, perspiration, dirt and sand while still allowing sound to enter. A cord will attach to the sleeve and clip onto your shirt, keeping your hearing aids from falling to the water or ground.
  4. Opt for resistant models: Although they’re not waterproof, water-resistant hearing aids will help prevent damage from water and sweat. These models are recommended for those who are often in or near the water, or who tend to sweat frequently.
  5. Consider insurance: To give yourself peace of mind, it may be worthwhile to invest in hearing aid insurance. These policies will help protect you in the case of damage, loss or repair.

For more information about services available at Audiology and Hearing Aid Center Arizona, contact us online or at of our Scottsdale locations.

Don’t Ignore Dealing With One-Sided Hearing Loss

Woman with one sided hearing lossFor whatever reason, people tend to overlook single-sided hearing loss more than they would a hearing deficit in both ears.

They may avoid the issue, saying they simply have a bad side or downplay the serious nature of the situation.

Audiology & Hearing Aid Center Arizona encourages you to seek treatment for single-sided hearing loss because it could be a sign of sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSHL).

How Does SSHL Occur?

More than 90% of hearing loss is of the sensorineural variety, meaning the inner ear’s tiny hair cells have been damaged. Once this occurs, the resulting hearing loss is permanent because the cells do not regenerate themselves. Excessive noise levels most often cause this hearing loss, although factors such as diet, smoking and some ototoxic medications (those that harm hearing) can also play a part.

The “sudden” variety of sensorineural hearing loss typically affects just one ear over a few days. You may be able to hear voices and sounds, but they progressively become more muffled. The ear loses the ability to hear certain pitches or frequencies, which are critical to picking up tone changes in voices or music.

SSHL is commonly caused by loud noise, although it could also be due to:

• High blood pressure or poor circulation
• Weakened blood vessels, frequently caused by diabetes
• Meniere Disease or Lyme disease
• Autoimmune or neurologic diseases
• Head trauma
• Ototoxic drugs, including painkillers such as ibuprofen and aspirin, chemotherapy drugs, opiates, as well as some diuretics and antibiotics

Treating SSHL

When treated quickly, SSHL can often be treated and even reversed. If you notice sudden hearing loss, be sure to tell your audiologist the issue occurred quickly to help them properly diagnose and treat the problem.

Of those treating it immediately, about 50% of people recover most of their hearing. If the hearing loss is not treated within the first few days, it may become permanent and irreversible.

Of the approximately 4,000 people who experience SSHL each year, most of them are under the age of 50. Typically, individuals may first notice the hearing loss when they hear their alarm going off in the morning, or that they can suddenly hear on the phone worse in one ear than the other. Occasionally, a popping sound is heard right before the hearing loss begins.

Treat SSHL as a medical emergency. Immediately contact an audiologist or if necessary, visit the emergency room. If you are unable to restore your hearing to pre-SSHL levels, hearing aids can often improve your listening experiences and quality of life.