News & Recent Coverage

  • For Better Brain Health, Preserve Your Hearing

    Every now and then I write a column as much to push myself to act as to inform and motivate my readers. What follows is a prime example. Last year in a column entitled “Hearing Loss Threatens Mind, Life and Limb,” I summarized the current state of knowledge about the myriad health-damaging effects linked to untreated hearing loss, a problem that afflicts nearly 38 million Americans and, according to two huge recent studies, increases the risk of dementia, depression, falls and even cardiovascular diseases. Knowing that my own hearing leaves something to be desired, the research I did for that column motivated me to get a proper audiology exam. The results indicated that a well-fitted hearing aid could help me hear significantly better in the movies, theater, restaurants, social gatherings, lecture halls, even in the locker room where the noise of hair dryers, hand dryers and swimsuit wringers often challenges my ability to converse with my soft-spoken friends. That was six months…

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/30/well/live/brain-health-hearing-dementia-alzheimers.html

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  • Hearing Aids are Getting Smarter

    The Wall Street Journal - September 15, 2019 Medical devices and consumer electronics are converging to create a new generation of hearing aids. The latest devices—using wireless technology, smartphone apps, miniature digital components and rechargeable batteries—not only amplify human voices and reduce background noise, but also take phone calls, stream music, track physical activity and social interactions, and will even turn on a Bluetooth-connected coffeepot.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/hearing-aids-are-getting-smarter-11568599441

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  • Cures for Hearing Loss May Be Found in New Drugs

    Scientists are pursuing the first medicines to treat hearing loss. Today’s principal treatments—hearing aids and electronic devices called cochlear implants—help many people who have suffered damage to their ears caused by aging, noise, genetics or drugs. But neither of those treatments cures or counters the biological causes of hearing loss. By contrast, several experimental new drugs aim to do just that.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/cures-for-hearing-loss-may-be-found-in-new-drugs-11568599440?mod=e2tw

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  • Untreated Hearing Loss Linked To Loneliness And Isolation For Seniors

    When Anne Madison could no longer hear her microwave beep, she assumed that her appliance needed repair. In fact, the machine worked well, but her confusion foreshadowed a frustrating struggle: a long and lonely battle with hearing loss. Madison didn't bother going to a doctor after the microwave incident. She knew that hearing aids were so expensive that she could never afford them. So she decided to deal with the hassles of hearing impairment on her own and "just kind of pulled up my socks." Before long, her world began to shrivel. She stopped going to church, since she could no longer hear the sermons. She abandoned the lectures that she used to frequent, as well as the political rallies that she had always loved. Communicating with her adult sons became an ordeal, filled with endless requests that they repeat themselves, or speak louder. And when she moved to a Baltimore housing development in 2013, she got a reputation for being standoffish, with neighbors incorrectly assuming…

    https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2019/09/12/760231279/untreated-hearing-loss-linked-to-loneliness-and-isolation-for-seniors

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  • Listen Up: Hearing Aids May Do More Than Just Treat Hearing Loss

    Age-related hearing loss is rarely dramatic, happening slowly over time, robbing older people of snippets of conversation and leaving them unable to filter out background noise as well as they once could. Early signs can include routinely cranking up the TV volume and having trouble with phone dialogue. Left untreated, hearing loss can lead to social isolation and mental and physical decline. But it doesn’t have to be that way. A new study suggests intervening with hearing aids at the time of a hearing-loss diagnosis among people 66 and over can lower the risk of new onset Alzheimer’s disease or dementia, depression or anxiety, and fall-related injuries over the next three years, compared with patients who didn't start wearing hearing aids right away. That's according to a study from the University of Michigan published Sept. 4 in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. The difference was in the double digits. The risk of being diagnosed with dementia or Alzheimer's after…

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/kristengerencher/2019/09/11/listen-up-hearing-aids-may-do-more-than-just-treat-hearing-los

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