A Cure for Hearing Loss?

All you boomers who listened to too much rock ’n’ roll may eventually get back your hearing by popping a pill. Researchers are closing in on a way to reverse sensorineural loss, the most common cause of hearing loss. Just as important, pharmaceutical companies are putting big money into the effort. Garnering the most publicity so far is a clinical trial of an injectable drug backed by the Swiss pharmaceutical company Novartis. Given that 48 million Americans have some degree of hearing loss — …

When Noise Is Painful

Even if I’d known that the Broadway production of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time would, in Ben Brantley’s words, push all my “emotional and sensory buttons,” I wouldn’t have been prepared for the experience. I was stunned by the brilliance of the production. But I was also stunned by how familiar — and how literally painful — I found the play’s depiction of high-functioning autism, or Asperger’s syndrome. This production may come as close as possible to …

Talking About Hearing Loss to Someone Who Doesn’t Want to Listen

En español l The one question I am asked more than any other is: “How do I talk to my spouse about hearing loss?” Every time I try to bring up the subject, they say, the spouse brushes it off. “I can hear fine,” is the impatient reply. Or, “It’s because you mumble.” Or, “It’s too loud in this restaurant.” Or — and this is the most frustrating — “Maybe I do, but it doesn’t bother me.” “Well, it bothers …

Which NFL Team Has Fans Loud Enough to Trigger Earthquakes?

If you’re lucky enough to attend Sunday’s NFL playoff game between the Seattle Seahawks and the Green Bay Packers, bring your noise-canceling headphones. It might also be a good idea to tie down your valuables before you leave home. Seismographers from the University of Washington have found that the crowd noise at CenturyLink Field is so loud that it generates earthquakes. Minor ones, so far, but this is a big game. >> Get discounts on hearing aids and more with …

Hearing Loss? Denial Doesn’t Work. Trust Me.

Boomers and beyond: It may be time to face up to the fact that you probably have hearing loss. An estimated 48 million Americans do, and 55 percent of them are under the age of 60. It’s easy to ignore, but your life will be much better if you don’t.  Like many people, I spent years — decades! — denying that my hearing loss was a problem. It came on suddenly and strongly, so I couldn’t deny its existence. But I did …

Hearing Loss Tied to Brain Shrinkage

We’ve known for several years that hearing loss is linked to dementia and decline in memory and thinking skills, but we don’t yet understand why they are connected. A new study from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore may provide an explanation: Older adults with hearing problems appear to have a greater rate of brain shrinkage as they age. Researchers used information from the ongoing Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging to study 126 adults ages 56 to 86 who had yearly MRI brain scans …