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Can I be frank about something?

I’ve recently had the worst summer cold ever, which started as a sore throat (for which my doctor gave me antibiotics), which worsened and then proceeded to make me bed ridden the entire long weekend +1. In this midst of all the this fun and excitement (ugh I felt like a bag of sand) both of my eardrums perforated. Ruptured. Tore.

I’ve now been without a significant portion of my hearing for 3 days. This is what’s called a conductive hearing loss.

con·duc·tive
kənˈdəktiv/
adjective
adjective: conductive
  1. having the property of conducting something (especially heat or electricity or sound).
    “to induce currents in conductive coils”
    • of or relating to conduction.

My hearing will gradually find its way back to me with the help of my Doctor’s magic drops and time, as my eardrums heal I should get my hearing back. It can take 8+ weeks to heal on its own. If it doesn’t, I need a referral to see an Otolaryngologist if my ear drums don’t heal on their own and I still have a significant hearing loss.

Here are the things that I have noticed since I’ve been for all tense and purposes placed in a sound proof bubble:

  1. Everything makes noise. My pen on the desk, my dogs’ nails on the floor. The neighbor’s car door, my car, my phone. I never really noticed how noisy the world was before – now that its gone the silence is deafening. Poof. Gone. The most bizarre sensation in the world is standing in the shower (with my ears protected from water) and not hearing the water fall. Bizarre. Like, I laughed out loud about it. I can’t hear the keys right now as I type, but I know they are making noise. So if a tree falls in a forest, it does make a sound.
  2. People suck at communication skills. I like to think that because of where I work, I may be an exception… But in general, when you tell people that you can’t hear them, they continue talking at the same volume and pitch they were speaking before, they make no greater effort for you to hear them out. i.e. my Doctor yesterday kept turning away from me when she was talking. And I would have to ask her repeat herself. Over. And Over. And Over. Look at me, because the pieces of the puzzle that I can’t hear can be filled in by my looking at your beautiful face!
  3. There’s a lot of noise in my head. Every inhale, every exhale. Every bite I chew. Every hair I comb, every time I move my head or jaw. Clearing my throat is loud. My stomach growling woke me out of a cold and sinus drug addled sleep. This is all a symptom of conductive hearing loss, and it is obnoxious that I can’t hear much that goes on on the outside of my own head. Everything on the inside… LOUD. Part of it of course is because I don’t hear anything else, its not drowning out the sound of my swallowing.
  4. I’m exhausted. Now that the general malaise is gone from my illness and it took some hearing with it, everything I do is a struggle and I’m exhausted trying to read people, struggle on the phone with all the fantastic people who call me (that’s you!) and it makes me tired. My brain is working too hard to compensate.
  5. Tinnitus is real. My particular tinnitus is pulsatile tinnitus, I can hear my heartbeat. Its not a sound that anyone else can hear, every heartbeat I hear loud and clear in my head. Every last one. Over. And Over. And Over. I wake up and its there. I try to sleep and its there. I can’t mask this with another sound, because I can’t hear that either. This will go away when my hearing comes back and I hear other things than what is happening in my head. I hope.

So that’s that. The first thing I said to Bernice and Paige when my hearing hopped a train was ‘I can’t understand why hearing aids don’t sell themselves’. So if I might be frank, this not hearing all the sounds is no joke. My hearing loss happened suddenly and traumatically so of course, I noticed all the sounds gone at once, not gradually like everyone else. None the less, this has been a real eye opener. I can’t imagine why anyone would not want to hear the sounds of life.

I’m frantic to get a piece of those sounds back. 8+ weeks seems so far away.

~melissa

 

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The Hurdles to Getting Hearing Aids

A New York Times blog posted this morning struck a cord with us here at The Hearing & Dizziness Clinic. (Click here to read it.)

Jane Brody writes that

Hearing loss is usually gradual, and people often fail to recognize when it becomes severe enough to warrant hearing aids. Some deny that they have a problem, and instead accuse others of mumbling when they know people are talking but can’t understand what is being said. Still others regard hearing aids as unattractive devices that make them feel and look old in a society that prizes youthfulness.

We see this every day. Mostly those who could benefit from a hearing aid value their vanity over communication with family and friends.

What many people with hearing loss don’t realize is that the signs of the untreated hearing loss are more noticeable to others than hearing aids.

If you feel you are having trouble communicating or are isolating yourself socially because of your hearing trouble, give us a call. We would be happy to walk you over perceived hurdles. Our Doctors of Audiology are here to help. (519) 961-9285

 

 

 

 

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Meniere’s Disease – Do you have it?

Do you have other symptoms with your hearing loss?

How about dizziness? Vertigo, or imbalance? Tinnitus or ringing in your ears? Fullness in your ears?

When the three occur together – Hearing Loss, Tinnitus & Dizziness – as Audiologists, this triad of symptoms is a red flag for a disease called Meniere’s Disease.

There is no quick and easy test for Meniere’s Disease. Diagnosis is based on a detailed case history, hearing tests and balance assessment. Your Doctor may send you for a CT scan or an MRI to rule out other possible causes for your symptoms.

The disease itself is no fun, but with ongoing research and new treatments, people with Meniere’s are finding success in managing their various symptoms. And one day there may even be cure as researchers continue to learn more.

If you are experiencing Meniere’s like symptoms, it does not necessarily mean that you have Meniere’s Disease. Contact The Hearing & Dizziness Clinic to have your  hearing and balance tested today!

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Focus on hearing, balance

Did you see our spotlight in The Windsor Star this week?

We’re so proud to have received so much support from the local community!

Do you know someone who could benefit from our services? Be sure to share our Windsor Star article with them!

http://blogs.windsorstar.com/special-features/focus-on-your-hearing-balance

And as always, if you have questions for us about what we do, or how we can help you – Please call us! (519) 961-9285

Make a hearing test part of your health routine!

Many Canadians have their eyesight tested every 2-3 years, and yet Statistics Canada reveals that about 70% of adults with measured hearing loss did not report any diagnosis by a health care professional. That is, they noticed they had a hearing loss, but didn’t see an Audiologist or Physician about their problem.

Our Doctors of Audiology recommend a hearing test before the age of 40 for a “baseline“, and a hearing test every 2-3 years after to monitor changes.

Other factors that may affect your hearing: obesity, exposure to loud noise (industrial or leisure), diabetes, kidney disease. Are you a smoker? The chemicals in cigarettes are ototoxic (that is, they can impair your hearing, cause tinnitus or affect your balance).

It only takes one hour to have your hearing tested with our Doctors of Audiology. What better time to have your hearing tested than Better Hearing Month? Call to arrange an appointment at (519) 961-9285.

http://thechronicleherald.ca/more/wellness/1283596-hearing-tests-part-of-%E2%80%98overall-health-routine%E2%80%99

Our Doctors of Audiology, Audiologists, Paige Pierozynski & Bernice McKenzie

What is an Audiologist?

Continuing with our post-per-day vow through the month of May for Better Hearing Month, we decided to tell you who and what we are! We’re Audiologists!

At The Hearing & Dizziness Clinic, we are happy to have two Doctors of Audiology, Audiologists – Paige Pierozynski & Bernice McKenzie – to help you with your hearing & balance needs.

An Audiologist is a healthcare practitioner with a special interest in your ears. Our expertise includes the prevention, identification, assessment, treatment and rehabilitation of auditory and balance disorders; and provide care to all age groups from infants to the elderly.

We like how this Audiologist explains the differences between practitioners that you may see about your ears or hearing and why you should choose an Audiologist.

If you or someone you know has a problem with their hearing, experiences tinnitus, vertigo or imbalance – we’d be glad to offer our services and experience to you. We are open Monday through Friday, and are independently and locally owned.

Please call (519) 961-9285 to schedule an appointment for your hearing or balance with our Audiologists!

 

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May is Better Hearing Month!

Who’s ready to kick off Better Hearing Month?!?

For the entire month of May we will be celebrating…US!  By us, we mean – Doctors of Audiology, Audiologists!

While that may sound a bit self-serving, celebrating US means focusing on what we can do for you!

Through daily blog posts for the month of May, we will show you all of the ways that we can help you, your family members, friends, and co-workers with improved hearing health.

Our main goal is to help you improve your quality of life through better hearing and balance. Your EARS connect you to the people you love and the activities you love to do – it is imperative that we celebrate this!

In the spirit of Us: Doctors of Audiology, we absolutely LOVE —–>  this video  <——  It shows one of the many reasons why we wanted to become Audiologists.

So cheers to us, and Better Hearing Month! #BHSM 

P.S. Best of luck to the #Essex73s taking on Port Hope tonight! We’re rooting for you! Bring home the Schmalz Cup!

 

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Essex Free Press Article about our Tinnitus Lunch & Learn

Happy Thursday!  Hope everyone is staying dry and warm on this “spring” day.

Please see Sylene Argent’s article titled Clinic Shares Information about Tinnitus in the Essex Free Press this week. Sylene reported on our Tinnitus Lunch & Learn that we hosted on March 23, 2015.

If you or a loved one is suffering from tinnitus, or have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact The Hearing & Dizziness Clinic at 519.961.9285

Happy Friday!

With March Break upon us, we wanted to take this opportunity to remind you that the silence of your child wearing headphones or earbuds while listen to music or video games is NOT always golden.

An iPod’s maximum volume is more than 10 times as loud as the recommended listening setting & the sensory damage caused by prolonged listening is irreversible.

With hearing loss on the rise in teens in the last decade, we urge you to implement some simple – but effective safe listening rules for your child.

1. Never allow listening through headphones for longer than 4 hours per day. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), being exposed to more than 85 decibels (about the level that teens listen to their music today) of sound for eight hours can damage your hearing.*

2. Provide your child with cool – but safe – listening gear. Such as these headphones which control the volume through filters which caps the output of sound.

3. Have your child’s hearing tested. If he or she listens to a lot of music or plays a lot of video games with headphones on, we recommend a hearing test every 2nd year. Call The Hearing & Dizziness Clinic at (519) 961-9285 today to have your child’s hearing tested!

Have a safe and fun March Break! We’ll keep our fingers crossed for nice weather!

____

*Read more HERE

 

 

Diabetics are twice as likely to have hearing loss

Diabetics – Schedule Your Annual Hearing Test Today

Happy Wednesday!

We all know there are many causes of hearing loss; exposure to loud noise, aging, head trauma, etc. What you may not associate with hearing loss is DIABETES. Studies show that people who are diabetic – even pre-diabetic, were twice as likely to have a hearing loss. Considering there are 2.4 million Canadians who have been diagnosed diabetic, a visit to our Doctors of Audiology at The Hearing & Dizziness Clinic for an annual hearing test is a must!

If you or someone you love suffers from Diabetes, call 519.961.9285 today to arrange your diagnostic hearing assessment.

The full article can be found here -> http://www.healthyhearing.com/report/52369-Diabetics-twice-as-likely-to-have-hearing-loss