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Hearing Loss

10 Ways to Learn Sign Language

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Ten signs of hearing loss you can’t afford to miss

If you had hearing loss, would you know it? Not necessarily. Hearing loss often starts subtly and symptoms can take decades to manifest themselves as it progresses slowly over time. The most common type of hearing loss, age-related hearing loss (presbycusis), can shift so gradually that you may not realize how much you are missing. In fact, as hearing worsens, you may subconsciously adjust everyday activities and social interactions to cope with hearing difficulties. In time, you might not notice how gradually hearing loss has diminished your ability to live your life to its fullest. Luckily, you can do things to improve this situation and re-engage with loved ones.

Knowing the signs of hearing loss is key to success

There are many signs of hearing loss. It starts with everyday annoyances. Some are blatant, others are subtle. If you or a loved one are showing these signs, we encourage you to make an appointment for a complimentary hearing assessment.*

  1. “People are mumbling” – This could indicate hearing loss.

    You may notice that certain words are difficult to understand. People, especially women and children, may seem to be talking too softly or not enunciating their words. Chances are you find yourself saying, “What did you say?” all the time. If this sounds like you, you may be experiencing hearing loss.

  2. Are restaurants too loud?

    Restaurants are among the hardest places to navigate for people with untreated hearing loss. Background noises, such as clinking dishes, people speaking loudly at other tables and loud music all make it exceptionally challenging to follow a conversation.

  3. Social gatherings aren’t fun anymore

    People talking passionately, music, laughter and other competing sounds can make it harder to take part in get-togethers with family and friends. Perhaps you find yourself “sitting out” of the fun or heading home early. There is good news. You don’t have to. The professionals at Smithtown Sayville Hearing Services can help you with ways to cope with hearing loss so you can enjoy the holidays with this simple guide to enjoying social events with hearing loss.

  4. Conversations take too much effort

    Are you exhausted at the end of the day, or a end of the meeting at work? The stress of straining to hear what others are saying can take its toll on your wellness.

  5. Telephone conversations are a struggle

    Telephone, and especially cell phone, transmission is not perfect. Most people can fill in the gaps. Hearing loss compounds the problem and you may struggle to take in the information. This may lead you to avoid phone calls and resort to texting.

  6. Hearing loss affects you and your loved ones

    Hearing loss can take an emotional toll on you and your loved ones. If one or more of these descriptions ring true to you, hearing loss may be the culprit.

  7. High volume is a sign of hearing loss

    Even if you think the volume is fine, if your family and friends complain that you turn up the volume too loud when you watch television or listen to music, you may be experiencing a well-known sign of hearing loss. Are you tired of the constant battle to enjoy TV with family or friends at a sound level that makes everyone happy? It might be worth it to check your hearing, if only to make your family happy.

  8. Are your ears ringing?

    Tinnitus, or ringing in the ears, is often the first sign of hearing loss. Tinnitus impacts people of all ages, and may be attributed to trauma, exposure to loud noise or illness. It might be a slight annoyance or make it difficult for you to concentrate, sleep, work and even maintain relationships. According to the American Tinnitus Association, 56% of people with tinnitus also have hearing loss.[i]

  9. You are out of balance – loss of balance is a sign of hearing loss

    Hearing loss may be a sign of an underlying condition that is also impairing your balance. Researchers at Johns Hopkins Universityii found that even a mild degree of hearing loss tripled the risk of an accidental fall.

  10. You are opting out of engaging with people

Is hearing loss putting you in solitary confinement? Have you noticed that you are embarrassed to meet new people? Perhaps you are afraid to join in because you may not understand what is being said. Perhaps you withdraw if it is easier to live without straining to hear people.

Other signs of hearing loss – You are not yourself

Have you felt depressed, distracted or unengaged? Hearing loss has been linked to dementia, depression and other brain-related ailments, including stroke.

Take the first step to better hearing

Perhaps you’ve avoided getting treatment because you are afraid of the stigma that some people associate with hearing aids. That’s old-school thinking. Besides, today’s hearing aids are minicomputers that subtly fit your ears – and your lifestyle.

To get started, we encourage you to come in for a professional hearing assessment. Book an appointment to speak with a professional about addressing your hearing loss.*

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Are these Problems Preventing You from Benefiting from Hearing Aids?

Are you among the 80% of people who are not benefiting from hearing aids even though you have them? That’s right, the National Institute of Health (NIH) estimates that only 20% of people who have hearing aids are wearing them regularly and experiencing the better hearing benefits. We are here to help you troubleshoot your hearing aid use to ensure that you are getting the most out of them.

If you are experiencing any of these problems with your hearing aids, please call us right away to make an appointment so that we can help solve them for you. After all, you already made the investment in hearing aids, let’s make sure that you are enjoying the benefits too.

  1. Not fitting right. Your hearing aids are not only calibrated for your hearing, but also molded to your ears. If they are no longer fitting properly, make an appointment. It can just need a simple adjustment or re-molding to be able to work right again.
  2. Not working correctly. If you aren’t hearing the same way you could when you first got your hearing aids, then they might need to be re-calibrated. We can do that during your next visit, just call for an appointment.
  3. Outdated technology. Hearing aids aren’t made to last forever. New technology is invented all the time and if your hearing aids are outdated, come in for a consultation to see what is available or what can be done. If you aren’t ready for new hearing aids, we can still see about adjusting your current hearing aids so that they can continue helping you hear.
  4. Unsure about wearing them. Many people who get hearing aids don’t realize that there is a bit of an adjustment period to get used to them. Remember, practice makes perfect, but if you need help getting used to wearing your hearing aids, don’t hesitate to call us for a consultation.

Consult with the Experts at Smithtown / Sayville Hearing Services

If you want to learn more about hearing loss evaluations and treatments, just let us know. Contact us today to schedule a FREE assessment. We’d love to see you and answer anything you’ve got for us. Here at Smithtown Hearing Services we are dedicated to your hearing health and all aspects of your life, living with hearing loss! We have two convenient hearing center locations on Long Island: one in Sayville,NY and the second in Smithtown,NY.

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10 Ways to Learn Sign Language

Sign language is an excellent tool that can help you bridge the communication gap that you experience with hearing loss. While it may seem like it could be challenging to learn, there are so many ways to learn sign language. Below are several methods & tips to consider when trying to learn sign language.

What is Sign Language?

Before we learn anything about how to do sign language, let’s explain what it is, exactly. The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) defines American Sign Language as a complete, complex language that employs signs made by moving the hands combined with facial expressions and postures of the body. It is the primary language of many North Americans who are deaf and is one of several communication options used by people who are deaf or hard-of-hearing.

How to Learn Sign Language

As we already mentioned, there are so many different ways to learn sign language making it easier to find the one that works best for you. Here are 10 ways to approach learning sign language:

  1. Start by learning the alphabet signs.
  2. Get yourself a sign language dictionary.
  3. Hire a private tutor.
  4. Take a class at your local school or community center.
  5. Take an online course.
  6. Watch videos online, like on YouTube.
  7. Read a how to book.
  8. Ask a friend who knows sign language to teach you.
  9. There are apps & software programs available that can teach you on your computer or mobile device.
  10. Keep practicing; continue to practice words you’ve already learned while at the same time add new ones.

Remember, sign language doesn’t just use the hands to communicate; your arms, torso, and facial expressions will also be a part of ASL.

Consult with the Experts at Smithtown / Sayville Hearing Services

If you want to learn more about hearing loss evaluations and treatments, just let us know. Contact us today to schedule a FREE assessment. We’d love to see you and answer anything you’ve got for us. Here at Smithtown Hearing Services we are dedicated to your hearing health and all aspects of your life, living with hearing loss! We have two convenient hearing center locations on Long Island: one in Sayville,NY and the second in Smithtown,NY.

Posted by Admin

October is National Hearing Protection Month: 5 Ways to Protect Your Hearing

October is National Hearing Protection Month. To honor this, we are featuring 5 ways to protect your hearing. Loud noises, including listening to media through headphones, are causing hearing loss to rise; therefore, it is more important than ever to be aware about protecting your hearing. We have put together a list of 5 ways to protect your hearing and help you keep your ears and hearing safe.

  1. Understand the law if you are exposed to loud noises in the workplace. Employers are required by law to have ear protection if you are exposed to loud noises while at work. Click here to read more about OSHA requirements and standards for hearing protection on the job.
  2. How loud is too loud? Half the battle of combating noise-induced hearing loss is knowing how loud is too loud. It is important to recognize that all noise-induced hearing loss doesn’t come from sudden loud noises like explosions, gunshots or fireworks. You may not realize that everyday environments can often be loud enough to cause hearing loss, especially if you are exposed to them for extended periods of time. The National Institute of Health lists noises 85 decibels or above as too loud. There are free apps you can put on your phone to help you see how loud a room is. If you don’t have an app available, another way to gauge what is too loud is if your ears are ringing after leaving, that is too loud and can potentially cause hearing loss. Noise-induced hearing loss can be caused by concerts, power tools, lawn mowers, and even some of the louder vacuum cleaners.
  3. Wear hearing protection when exposed to loud noise. Hearing protection is available in the form of headphones and ear plugs. You can always call our office if you have questions about which type of hearing protection is right for you. Different types of hearing protection are right for different situations.
  4. Move away from loud noises to give your ears a break. If you are at an event that is very loud (such as a concert or noisy sporting event) and don’t have hearing protection, give your ears an occasional break. This gives your hearing a chance to “recover” from the loud noise and can help prevent permanent damage.
  5. Get regular hearing assessments from your hearing professional or audiologist. Hearing loss is usually a gradual process. That makes it difficult to recognize hearing loss until it is significant enough to impact your life in a negative way. Regular hearing assessments can identify a decline in hearing before it becomes a problem. There are many issues associated with untreated hearing loss beyond losing the ability to hear and communicate. Schedule an appointment for your hearing assessment today!

To read more about hearing protection, check out these posts from our blog:

Be Proactive with Your Hearing Safety

Preventing Hearing Loss

Hearing Aid Safety

Avoiding Hearing Loss & Keeping Your Ears Safe

Consult with the Experts at Smithtown / Sayville Hearing Services

If you want to learn more about hearing loss evaluations and treatments, just let us know. Contact us today to schedule a FREE assessment. We’d love to see you and answer anything you’ve got for us. Here at Smithtown Hearing Services we are dedicated to your hearing health and all aspects of your life, living with hearing loss! We have two convenient hearing center locations on Long Island: one in Sayville,NY and the second in Smithtown,NY.

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