Hearing Loss

Olympic Heroes Who Have Overcome Hearing Loss

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Hearing Loss

Veterans and Hearing Loss

Posted by Admin |

Olympic Heroes Who Have Overcome Hearing Loss

The Olympics are under a month away, so let’s take a moment and look at some inspiring Olympians who have overcome hearing loss. Do you love the Olympics like we do? The excitement of the games, the Cinderella stories of athletes overcoming incredible odds to take a medal.

There’s nothing quite like it.

You may not realize that there have been several athletes over the years who have overcome profound hearing loss to compete in the games.

The earliest known athlete to compete in the modern games with hearing loss is Carlo Orlandi from Italy. He competed in 1928 and won the Gold!

Hugo Passos is a wrestler from Portugal who was the only wrestler for his country in the 2004 Athens games. He also participated in four Deaflympics.

Dean Barton-Smith is an Australian decathlete who participated in the 1992 Olympics. He now is the CEO of Deaf Children Australia.

Terence Parkin is South African swimmer who won the silver medal at the 2000 Summer Olympics. He also competed in the 2004 Summer Olympics

Jeff Float is a former American competitive swimmer, World Record holder, World Champion and Olympic Gold Medalist. When he was 13 months old, he lost most of his hearing and nearly died due to viral meningitis. Because of this, he is 90% deaf in his right ear and 65% in the left, thus becoming the first legally deaf athlete from the United States to win an Olympic Gold Medal.

Tamika Catchings has participated in the most Olympics. The female basketball player for the WNBA appeared in the 04, 08 and 12 games, assisting Team USA win the Gold in all three.

The most recent Olympian to compete with hearing loss is David Smith, a member of United States men’s national volleyball team. He competed in the 2012 games in London.

We love the drive and attitude of these athletes – who prove that anyone can overcome anything.

We hope these athletes inspire you like they inspire us. They didn’t let their hearing loss stop them from chasing their dreams – and you shouldn’t either.

If you aren’t hearing well, stop in and see us for an evaluation.

We can help you determine how to best serve your needs.

We can’t wait to help you gain a better hearing lifestyle. Here at Smithtown Hearing Services we are committed to better hearing and committed to you! Contact us today to schedule a FREE assessment.

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Holiday Party Tips For People with Hearing Loss

The Holidays are supposed to be a time of joy and reconnecting with family and friends. But when you suffer from hearing loss, it sometimes just feels a little stressful.  

The good news is that it doesn’t have to be stressful. If you are prepared with these tips, you’ll have a great time without feeling overwhelmed or isolated.

Tip #1 – Wear Your Hearing Aids.

This seems like a no-brainer to us. You were a smart cookie, and purchased hearing aids so you could hear better, so use them!

Make sure they are charged, and/or charge up an extra set of batteries to make sure you are ready when it’s party time.

Tip #2 – Don’t Sit By the Kitchen.

Or anywhere else that is particularly bustling or noisy. If you find a quieter spot to plant yourself, we promise you will have a better time.

You will be able to converse with your friends and family in an environment that is suited to your needs, rather than trying to struggle to hear over a bunch of background noise.

Tip #3 – If You Don’t Hear, Ask Them To Repeat, or Restate.

Repeating isn’t always helpful when you didn’t hear what someone said. Restating usually works better. Or if you heard a part of it, tell them what you heard so they can help you understand all of it. People aren’t annoyed – they want to have a nice conversation with you!

Tip #4 – If You’ve Got Technological Help – Use It!

You bought those gadgets for a reason, use them! Whether it’s a device that captions the conversation, or just something that helps tune out background noise, you should definitely use it.

If you follow these tips, you are sure to enjoy all the Holiday parties on your list.  

We want you to hear at your best, and we are here to help you determine what your best options are.

If you aren’t hearing like you used to, come in and see us.

We can help you determine what your best options are to combat it.

We can’t wait to help you gain a better hearing lifestyle. Here at Smithtown Hearing Services we are committed to better hearing and committed to you! Contact us today to schedule a FREE assessment.

Posted by Admin

Veterans and Hearing Loss

Returning home from duty, veterans face many challenges, especially those who have served in combat zones. Among them, is hearing loss – ranking among the most prevalent health issues for recently returning and former soldiers. According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, more than 933,000 veterans have received compensation for hearing loss and 1.3 million veterans are receiving disability benefits for tinnitus. Beyond hearing loss and tinnitus, Auditory Processing Disorder (APD) affects a high number of veterans who were exposed to blasts. APD impacts the brain’s ability to understand speech despite the sufferer being able to register sounds normally. While injuries to the ear or brain may cause physical damage, a communication breakdown with loved ones may be the greatest casualty of hearing loss.

Special risks for soldiers’ hearing

No matter where they train or deploy, soldiers face environmental factors that can be harmful to hearing. BioMed Central’s Military Medical Researchers looked at which environments were the loudest and biggest threat to noise-induced hearing loss. They found that the impact of noise on hearing in the military varies among the branches of service.

Yet almost every soldier, sailor, airman or marine will be exposed to very high levels of noise from:

  • Weapons – shotguns, rifles, pistols, grenades and anti-tank weapons
  • Armored vehicles
  • Engine rooms and carrier decks of navy vessels
  • Helicopters, fighter planes, transport aircraft and various jets
  • Jet propulsion fuel

For some, a single explosion with sounds exceeding 140 dB can cause irreparable damage instantly. This sort of acoustic harm to the ears results in permanent hearing loss.

For others, longstanding exposure to dangerous levels of noise can contribute to ear damage over time. Chronic exposure to high sound levels may lead to changes that soldiers don’t notice immediately.

Why veterans should address hearing loss

Many people associate hearing loss with the elderly. However people of all ages can lose their hearing – especially if they have had extraordinary exposure to noise. This is one instance when silence isn’t golden. Hearing well means communicating well. Think about it, if you can’t listen:

  • How can you engage with your loved ones completely?
  • Can you understand your colleagues or customers or participate fully in the workplace?
  • How can you really enjoy your favorite music, movies or television? Sure, closed captioning or subtitles may help but it’s not the same as hearing the intonation in voices.

Unlike the loss of sight, hearing impairment is usually more gradual. You may miss bits and pieces of sentences, but you think that your brain can fill in the missing information. Yet sometimes, the brain guesses wrong. You may believe you comprehended the information when you actually misunderstood it! This can lead to needless conflict and unpleasant rounds of “he said – she said.”

Stylish options for veterans

For hearing aids, design matters! If you have a hearing deficit, these devices may provide a vital service to your well-being just like eyeglasses aid your vision. As with glasses, you want hearing aids to fit well while looking great. Today’s models come in many colors and styles so we can be sure to match you with the right device for your individual needs.

Hearing loss is nothing be ashamed of and hide. But if you choose to, we offer many discrete hearing aids that are hardly recognizable to the naked eye. Whether you wish to wear a stylish mini-computer that sits subtly behind your ear or you hide your hearing aids in the ear canal, there are plenty of options.

Thank you for your service! Now, take time to focus on your needs now!

At Smithtown Sayville Hearing Services we offer free hearing assessments* for veterans and non-vets alike. If you have concerns about your hearing or that of a loved one, we are happy to discuss your options with you. Make an appointment today to get started.

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5 Things People With Hearing Loss Wish People Understood

If you’ve never experienced diminished hearing, you really can’t understand what it’s like.

Most people with hearing loss would agree that they didn’t understand either until it happened to them. As such, here is our Top Five list of things that people with hearing loss wish other people understood:

1. Hearing is HARD.

The effort it takes to hear what’s being said to you when you don’t hear well is basically Herculean. It’s like a big game of hangman, where you know what some of the letters were, but you didn’t really catch all of them, so you are guessing the rest. Obviously, this can result in misunderstandings.

It’s genuinely exhausting to try to hear when you just can’t.

2. We aren’t being rude on purpose

If you don’t alert us to the fact that you are speaking to us, we may not realize. We aren’t being snobby. We just aren’t aware unless you give us cues by being right in our line of vision, or by reaching out with a quick touch.

3. We avoid socializing & groups, not because we don’t like events, but it’s just too much.

You cannot even begin to imagine how hard it is to hear at a party. It’s like talking to a friend in your kitchen, but a blender is running in the background.

As such, we avoid parties or group events. Listening in everyday situations wears us out. A large group is exhausting.

4. Repeating what you said isn’t always helpful.

Sometimes it’s the sounds of a specific word that we just can’t get. If we ask more than once, try to say it a different way. Again, we aren’t being purposefully rude if we ask multiple times, we just want to understand what you are trying to tell us.

5. Hearing Aids are not a magic fix.

It kind of seems like putting on hearing aids would be about the same as putting on a pair of glasses, but that is just not the case. Hearing aids definitely improve our hearing, but they don’t restore us to 100% hearing like glasses do for vision.

We may still need things repeated. We may still use captions on the television.

At the end of the day, we want you in our lives.

We want you to understand what we are going through, and we hope you can be patient with us.

If you are noticing diminished hearing, come in and see us.

We can help you determine which device will serve you best.

We can’t wait to help you gain a better hearing lifestyle. Here at Smithtown Hearing Services we are committed to better hearing and committed to you! Contact us today to schedule a FREE assessment.

Posted by Admin

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