Sound News - Volum 12, Issue 2 - Summer 2019

Our Summer 2019 Newsletter

Table of Contents

 

Hearing loss and dementia

Did you know that having a mild hearing loss doubles your risk for developing dementia as you age?

The latest research shows that people who regularly use their hearing aids can reduce some of that risk. A study published in 2018 in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society concluded that regular hearing aid use slows the rate of cognitive decline as we age.

Another study published in 2017 in the Lancet found that hearing loss is the most prominent midlife risk factor for developing dementia — with 55 being the youngest age at which hearing loss was shown to be a risk factor for developing dementia. We look forward to more well-designed studies that evaluate the relationship between hearing loss, hearing aid use, and dementia.

 

The fight against Alzheimer’s

This fall, Lafayette Hearing Center is partnering with the KLD Foundation to raise money to help fight against Alzheimer’s disease. Each of us here at LHC has personally experienced the devastating changes that happen to the people we love when their memories fail.

The KLD Foundation was started in 2016 by friends and family members of Karen Lee Dubea. Karen was diagnosed at the young age of 48 with early onset Alzheimer’s disease in 2011. In the past three years, the KLD Foundation has invested over $105,000 to fund Alzheimer’s research and care. KLD Foundation locally supports the Joyful Journey, Inc., Adult Day Service program in West Lafayette to provide dignified daily programming for those living with the disease. KLD Foundation also supports the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation.

 

Support the cause by having “A Night to Remember”

This year, LHC is helping to sponsor the KLD Foundation’s 4th Annual A Night to Remember fundraiser at the Ross-Ade Pavilion on Saturday, October 5 at 5pm.

There will be entertainment, a dinner, raffles, as well as silent and live auctions. Tickets will go on sale July 1 and can be purchased through www.kldfoundation.org. Please come out to this event to show your support for this important community resource.

All of us know someone who has been affected by this devastating condition. Your support of the KLD Foundation helps fight Alzheimer’s disease right here in our community.

Take Advantage of Our Community Appreciation Offers!

  • FREE Clean & Check of your current hearing devices *
  • BOGO BATTERIES! Buy One, Get One *

* Offers expire 8/30/19.

 
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APP-ly Yourself This Summer!

Six mobile apps to exp-EAR-ience the season with gusto

Swim gear? Check. Festival tickets? Check. Fido’s leash? Check. Hear-tastic apps? Let’s talk about that! You might not think about hearing wellness and communication when pondering apps, but we’re out to change that with a few cool resources for your summer fun.

Of the 5 million or so applications available between Apple’s and Google’s app stores alone, those dedicated to hearing wellness and related issues have a small but growing piece of the pie. Check out these six apps to help you seize the sunshine with optimal communication in mind.

 

AGXR Attune

Part of the AGX® Hearing family, the AGXr Attune app works with selected hearing aids to let you control everything from your smartphone. Discreetly adjust volume, change your settings, geotag the settings for your favorite places, or even locate your hearing aids.

The best part? The Audigy Assist function in the app lets you request updated settings and fine-tunings from your hearing-care specialist — without an office visit. Now, that’s convenience!

 

NIOSH Sound Level Meter

Though it can’t replace professional instruments or expert opinion, this app uses your compatible mobile device’s built-in microphone to measure the sound level in your environment. On a global scale, some researchers estimate that 16 to 24 percent of hearing loss is associated with occupational noise.

Excess noise is one of the most preventable causes of hearing loss, making it important to know the sound levels where you potentially spend a lot of time — at work — so you can curb your risk. The app can also help approximate noise at restaurants, concerts, or anywhere else you may need to protect your hearing.

 

ThriveTM Hearing Control

Artificial intelligence is here and ready to help right at your ears! Starkey Laboratories’ app works with compatible hearing devices such as selected AGX Hearing lines to track data including physical activity, hearing aid use, social engagement, and active listening.

It provides a body score, a brain score, and an overall wellness score so you can make informed decisions about your health and fitness. The app also facilitates remote fine-tuning by your hearing-care specialist — potentially saving you a trip — and, with its translation capabilities, lets you easily converse with people who speak other languages!

 

Live Transcribe

Launched in February, this Google app for Android-powered smartphones doesn’t translate but does transcribe in-person conversations in real time.

The program — developed with Gallaudet University, the renowned U.S. school for deaf and hard-of-hearing students — can turn speech from more than 70 languages and dialects into text on your phone’s screen in a matter of seconds, facilitating communication with quick, helpful captions.

It even supports bilingual chats, letting you toggle between languages, and allows you to type your responses rather than speak them if so desired.

 

Marlee Signs

This app for children and adults teaches basic American Sign Language (ASL) with Oscar-winning actress Marlee Matlin, who is deaf. ASL, common in the U.S. and Canada, offers a way to connect with others regardless of their hearing ability but can be especially useful for those who are or have friends or loved ones who are deaf or have a severe to profound hearing loss.

Other ASL-instruction apps are also available, so consider using a few different ones to explore finger-spelling, conversational signing, building vocabulary, helping babies communicate, and more.

 

Hearing Aid TicTacToe

With an estimated 34 million children living with disabling hearing loss, per the World Health Organization, it’s important that those helped with hearing aids get to know their devices. This app by developer Rule the School updates a classic game for a fun way to learn about hearing aids — including the names and functions of the various parts.

Two to four players can participate at a time, exploring the world of hearing tech through pictures, labels, cards, and a little friendly competition. It’s a great way to help empower younger users to understand their technology and report any problems!

 

Find Your Favorite!

With the list above, we’ve shared a few special finds. Now it’s your turn to choose.

That’s right: Anytime’s a great time to explore your favorite app store for options that just might surprise you. Search by keyword, developer name, app title, or product category to turn up results you may want to check out.

Be sure to carefully read the app description and system requirements. Some apps might also offer a demo you can preview before buying or downloading the product. You can also learn what others think of the app by reading users’ comments and professional reviews that may be available online. Happy hunting!

As with any apps, availability, functionality, and cost can change. Nearly all of the mobile apps listed above are free as of this writing, but compatibility with iOS- or Android-powered phones or tablets can vary per program, so be sure to read about them in the relevant online app store for more details.

Have a helpful hearing-related app you want to tell us about? Wondering how a particular app might work with your or a loved one’s hearing technology? We’d love to hear from you and are here to help. Contact our caring team today!

 
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6 Tips for Communicating at Get-Togethers

Here are some bonus tips to help you have a great summer!

  1. Coach loved ones. Most people without hearing loss never learned how to effectively communicate with someone who has hearing loss. They’ll appreciate the input.
  2. Turn it down. Ask the host to turn down the music or TV. It’s their job to ensure guests enjoy themselves.
  3. Be strategic. Choose a spot with good lighting (for lip-reading) that’s away from the music and isn’t surrounded by people.
  4. Look at the person speaking. Some of today’s tech focuses on sounds in front and filters out noise elsewhere.
  5. Give feedback. The person speaking will appreciate it. Use nonverbal cues or words of encouragement.
  6. Ask for rephrasing. The most common hearing loss type involves loss of clarity, not volume. If you miss something, ask the speaker to rephrase it.

 
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