Recently I became the proud owner (and wearer) of my new bionic hearing devices aka hearing aids. For months my husband was delicately (or not so delicately at times…) commenting on my hearing. For the sake of a happy marriage, and to prove him wrong, I set up a hearing test with audiologist, Christine Stangeland, of Oak Bay Hearing Clinic. To my surprise (and not my husbands) I had hearing loss that required me to get hearing aids.
Luckily I shared with a client the fact that I was getting my hearing checked. Her immediate response was sage advice — if I needed hearing aids to not hesitate to get them. She said there is a direct connection between hearing loss and decline in cognitive functioning and dementia. Given that my mom had Alzheimer’s disease, and my grandmother likely had it too, this information piqued my interest.
To the audiologist’s surprise, I didn’t hesitate to say yes to getting my new ‘bionic hearing devices. I recognize that it’s incredibly important in my work as a Notary to hear what my clients tell me. Now I can hear everyone clearly, I realize what sounds had faded away.
My new hearing devices are modern, sleek, and almost invisible. They are easy to put in and most of the time I forget about them even being in my ear. They are custom to my unique hearing loss and have Bluetooth capacity, so I get any music or podcast or phone calls direct into my ears.
Being an active member of the greater Victoria community, I wanted to use my influence and share some health awareness / insights to all my friends and clients. There is a stigma for many people regarding our hearing. It is a deficit that can be corrected. In the same way we think about our eyes and making sure we see …we need to get our hearing health checked to make sure we can hear.
I quickly realized that hearing impairments big or small are very common among people across all age demographics. The important thing is to get your hearing checked and if needed address any irregularities, as untreated or neglected hearing problems can have a large impact on your life. Even mild hearing loss has been shown to affect understanding and processing; and is linked to a decline in cognition. Limiting the negative stereotypes behind hearing aids, my goal is to share how a small health adjustment such as a hearing device can improve your health and day-to-day life.
The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) recommends that adults get a hearing screening every 10 years up until age 50, and after that, once every three years. Consistently staying on top of your hearing health is the best way to prevent future hearing loss or deprivation. The common saying of “if you don’t use it, you lose it,” applies for your hearing health. As without assistance, neuro pathways can become inactive or unreceptive because of the lack of auditory stimulation. When dealing with hearing loss, a hearing aid can help alleviate strain, gradually rebuilding and repairing the necessary neuro pathways. Especially with new innovative hearing technology, there are a variety of different device options available. New hearing aids are discrete, wireless, and can even be connected to your phone through Bluetooth!
Audiologist Christine Stangeland from Oak Bay Hearing Clinic shared a great article with me, to help me better understand our brains role in hearing: Click Here