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This Month In Health
  • Hear This!
    Find yourself turning up the volume, straining to hear when talking on the phone, or watching people’s lips as they speak? If so, you may be dealing with hearing loss. Keep reading to learn if there’s a treatment that will work for you. Read >>
  • A Burning Heart
    Some people deal only with occasional heart burn or acid indigestion in response to certain foods, while others suffer from a condition known as gastroesophageal reflux disease, commonly known as GERD. What causes GERD and could it be the explanation for your pain and discomfort? If so, how is it best treated? Read >>
  • From Head to Toe
    You may have tried to quit in the past or maybe you’re thinking about quitting. If you need another reason to quit, keep reading to learn what the toxins in cigarettes are doing to your body, from the tips of your toes to the top of your head. Read >>
  • A Cry for Help
    Every 40 seconds someone dies of suicide, yet countless others fail in their attempts. As suicide rates are on the rise, it’s important to know what moods, behaviors, talk, and risk factors to watch for in your loved ones. Read >>
Health and Fitness News

Hear This!

Not hearing as well as you used to? Here’s what you can do about it.

Find yourself turning up the volume, straining to hear when talking on the phone, or watching people’s lips as they speak? If so, you may be dealing with hearing loss. Gradual hearing loss is common as you age. In fact, it’s that estimated one out of four people ages 55 to 64 and half of all people who are older than 64 have hearing loss to some degree. The worse it is, the more it negatively affects your quality of life.

Besides normal aging, other factors that contribute to hearing loss include overexposure to loud noise, certain medications, genetics, earwax buildup, ear trauma, infection, and medical conditions. While most types of hearing loss can’t be reversed, there are ways to improve your hearing and ability to communicate. The kind of treatment you need depends on the cause of your hearing loss and how bad it is. Keep reading to learn if there’s a treatment that will work for you.

Change Medications

More than 200 medications and chemicals are known to affect the ear, whether they hinder hearing or harm your sense of balance. A few common culprits include antibiotics, aspirin, chemotherapy, malaria treatments, erectile dysfunction medications, and loop diuretics. If you suspect your hearing problems are connected to the drugs you take, talk with your doctor about switching to a different medication.

Treat Illness

Chronic illnesses such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes reduce blood flow to the ear, thereby limiting your ability to hear. Get these conditions under control and you should experience an improvement in hearing.

Hearing loss caused by an ear infection can normally be cleared up with a round of antibiotics.

Otosclerosis, a condition of abnormal bone growth in the ear, can lead to progressive hearing loss that typically begins in the 20s. Treatment includes surgery, hearing aids, or sodium fluoride treatments.
Meniere’s disease is characterized by hearing loss, vertigo, ringing, and pressure in the ears. Medication or dietary changes may help treat this condition.

Remove Wax Buildup

Sometimes the cause of hearing loss is as simple as too much wax in the ears. Earwax removal kits can be found at your local drugstore and used at home or talk with your doctor about having excess wax removed at your next visit.

Hearing Aids

When hearing loss is permanent due to inner ear damage, hearing aids can be a lifesaver. Due to high costs, poor reputation, and appearance, only a small percentage of people who could benefit from hearing aids actually own and use them. Worn in or behind the ear, hearing aids work by amplifying sound into your ear canal. With advances in technology, hearing aids are now quite simple to use, highly effective, and virtually unseen. Make an appointment with an audiologist to find out if you qualify for hearing aids.

Cochlear Implants

Severe cases of hearing loss may require more than a hearing aid. Used in kids and adults of all ages, a cochlear implant is a surgically implanted device that does the job of non-working ear parts, providing electrical stimulation to the auditory nerve so sound can be heard.

Lifestyle Changes

As hearing becomes difficult there are ways to help compensate. Plan to talk in areas with little to no background noise. Talk with people in well-lit areas so you can see their mouth. Let your loved ones know how they can be sensitive to your needs by talking clearly and directly to your face.