Five Ways to Hear Better

Do you think you’re losing your hearing? You probably are. Two-thirds of those over 75 have some degree of hearing loss, and so do a substantial percentage of younger people. The most effective way to deal with hearing loss is to get hearing aids. But if you’re not ready for hearing aids or other hearing assistive devices, you can help your hearing by learning to listen better. You could think of it as mindful listening. Here are five tips: Face the …

The Soundtrack of Summer Drive Time

Remember those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer with the top down—or at least the windows open — and Top 40 blasting from the radio. I thought that was one of the things I had to give up as my hearing loss got worse. I drive a lot, especially in summer, and often on the same kind of open two-lane road that I remember from my teens and early 20s. But I can’t hear the radio. And I especially can’t hear the radio …

Ins and Outs of Hearing Aid Coverage Under the ACA

Last week’s Supreme Court affirmation of the Affordable Care Act is good news for the 6.4 million Americans who stood to lose their health insurance if the decision had gone the other way. But it doesn’t improve matters for those with hearing loss. The ACA, unlike Medicare, does not specifically exclude coverage for hearing aids. In fact, the ACA does not specifically exclude any coverage: It was written in a positive way, delineating several categories of benefits that must be included in …

Facing Facts About Hearing Loss

May was Better Hearing Month, and I did a lot of radio interviews, some on behalf of AARP, others for my new book, Living Better With Hearing Loss: A Guide to Health, Happiness, Love, Sex, Work, Friends … and Hearing Aids. As I heard myself repeating the statistics in one interview after another, I was unhappily reminded of the magnitude of the numbers of people with hearing loss, and the blithe dismissal with which it is generally treated. The prime example …

Love Theater But Can’t Hear It? Four Showstopping Solutions

Do you love the theater but rarely go because you can’t understand the dialogue or lyrics? Fortunately there are several solutions to this problem beyond the familiar infrared headphones that many theaters offer. And those with hearing loss can even get discount tickets to many shows. First, about infrared. Theaters that seat more than 50 people are required, under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), to provide hearing assistance. Most offer infrared systems. If you have mild to moderate hearing loss …

Earplugs That Let In the Good, Block the Bad

An interviewer asked me the other day what I was doing for Better Hearing Month (May). Every month is Better Hearing Month for me, I said. Still, when it comes to hearing health, we can’t talk too much about prevention. Most hearing loss is caused by noise, with age either equal or a close second. If your ears are ringing after a concert or football game, they may seem to recover but that ringing is an indication that you may …