Posted on Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Test Your Hearing for Better Hearing & Speech Month!


May brings us more than spring flowers, it brings us an opportunity to appreciate and care for our hearing. May is Better Hearing & Speech Month (BHSM)! The American Speech-Hearing-Language Association has themed this BHSM, "Communication takes care." That's because taking care of your ears isn't just about your ears. Having an annual hearing test impacts your whole body health, including your brain.

So you didn't know that your hearing was tied to your whole body health. Don't feel bad, research into how hearing impacts whole body health is only now receiving the attention it deserves. This important research continues to support the idea that people who treat their hearing loss aren't just caring for their ears, but their whole body. So what's the difference for people who treat their hearing loss and people who don't?

  • People with even mild hearing loss have a greater likelihood of suffering from dementia and Alzheimer's. Conversely, studies show people who use hearing aids are no more likely to increase their likelihood of these conditions than people without hearing loss. One small study even showed that using hearing aids for two weeks increased concentration.
  • Taking care of your ears can help you keep your heart healthy! Low-frequency hearing loss has been shown to be predictor of cardiovascular troubles. Your hard working cardiovascular system provides blood to your entire body, including your beautiful ears. And your ears, delicate and strategically placed as they are, need the nutrients delivered through blood to stay healthy. In other words, if you find you have a problem with your hearing making changes to your diet to better care for your heart in addition to having your heart tested is a good idea.
  • Hearing is caring. This might seem simple, but it's also true. Hearing better means you are better able to communicate with the people you love. Not only has better communication through the use of hearing aids been shown to improve relationships, but it's also been shown to relieve stress and result in higher pay.
  • Better hearing can help keep your brain young. As Dr. Nina Kraus of Northwestern University tells us, "If you continue to play music throughout your life, we see a biologically younger brain." It's true. Not only do the sounds of our lives change our brains but the presence of complex musical sounds can actually enhance the way our brains work. That's because listening to music might seem like a no brainer, but it's actually a complicated process that can strengthen brain functions.
  • Poor hearing creates huge stresses on individual freedoms and inhibits the essential human need to communicate. This stress can mean that people shy away from social situations, but important studies show that people with hearing loss who use hearing aids are more socially active, fulfilled, and happier.
  • In May of 1927 a public health campaign began titled Better Hearing and Speech Month (BHSM) to focus awareness on the challenges and solutions for people with hearing and language differences. Today, it's also a wake up call for every single American. This May care for your hearing and yourself by having your hearing tested by a hearing health professional.

    Don't have a hearing health provider? Click Here to be connected with a hearing health provider in your area.

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