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Why do we have earwax?

We stumbled across this video today:

Earwax is another of our body’s mundane, under-appreciated, yet totally amazing protective devices. Like eyelashes and nose hair, earwax shields our body from outside invaders, including dust, bacteria, and other micro-organisms that can get in and irritate, inflame, or infect. Earwax lubricates our ears, in much the same way as tears lubricate our eyes. Without adequate amounts of earwax, our ears would feel dry and itchy.

Since our ears are self-cleaning, we should never, ever stick anything in them! Hence the old adage that you shouldn’t put anything in your ears smaller than your elbow and YES! that includes Q-Tips, even though they seem perfectly designed to fit inside the narrow ear canal. Keep these swabs and any other objects – including your fingers – out of your ears. When you put something in your ear – to scratch an itch or to attempt to remove wax – you risk pushing wax further into the ear, where it can block sound from meeting your eardrum.

If you feel your earwax may be affecting your hearing, contact your doctor for an appointment, it may be useful to instill a few drops of oil daily into your ears for a couple of days before your appointment. And of course, afterward come to see us at The Hearing & Dizziness Clinic to have your hearing tested.

 

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7 Signs That Your Spouse Has A Hearing Loss

Do you think your loved one has a hearing loss? This can be a sensitive issue for some couples.

Here are a few clues to look for as to whether or not your relationship might benefit from improved hearing!

The 7 Signs include:

1. Complaints about mumbling. Hearing loss isn’t just a lack of volume, its about lack of word understanding. If everyone around you sounds like the teacher from Charlie Brown, chances are you’re suffering from hearing loss. If it sounds like you’ve got cotton in your ears, you aren’t picking up the full range of sound – from high notes to low – making noise sound like mumbling to you.

2. Mixing up words. “You want me to eat a frog?” “No, Fred, I said, ‘See the fog’.”   When hearing starts to go, the brain may compensate for words not heard. Misunderstanding people can be embarrassing, but it doesn’t have to be that way.

3. TV is too loud. Are others complaining that the TV is shaking the windows? If this isn’t a sign of hearing loss, nothing is. This is a common complaint of those living with someone who has a hearing loss.

4. Trouble with background noise or conversation. Being a little lost in conversation isn’t always a sign of hearing loss. However, let’s say you’re at a work meeting or eating dinner with the family; when two or more people talk at the same time, do you have a hard time keeping up? People with hearing loss have a hard time masking out background noise.

5. Constantly asking for repetition, saying “What?” or “Pardon?” more than a couple of times a day. Just because you didn’t hear a mumbling co-worker from 10 feet away doesn’t mean you have a hearing loss. However, if “what?” or “huh” is the most commonly used word in your vocabulary, you aren’t getting the sound signals you need to process sound correctly.

6. Trouble communicating on the phone, or from a different room – when not face to face. When you have a hearing loss, the brain tries to fill in the information that is missing with your eyes: reading facial cues and gestures is not something that can be done on the telephone.

7. Withdrawing or avoiding social situations. If social events used to be fun but now they’re exhausting or frustrating, this is a sign of hearing loss – straining to hear conversations or focus on hearing and listening is hard on all our senses.

If you answered YES to any of these clues, your loved one will benefit from a hearing evaluation done by our Doctors of Audiology. A hearing evaluation is quick and painless and results are given immediately. Read more here.

Studies show that once a hearing loss is diagnosed it sometimes takes 7 years to do something about it! Imagine waiting 7 years to treat diagnosed high blood pressure or vision loss!

Call The Hearing & Dizziness Clinic today to arrange a hearing evaluation at (519) 961-9285, you’ll be glad you did!