Diabetes and Hearing Health

To raise awareness about the link between hearing loss and diabetes, the Better Hearing Institute in conjunction with Jacksonville Hearing and Balance Institute is urging people with diabetes to get their hearing checked.

Take the American Diabetes Association’s Diabetes Risk Test to find out if you are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes.  The Better Hearing Institute’s Across America Hearing Check Challenge can help determine if you need a comprehensive hearing test.   Hearing loss is almost twice as common in adults with diabetes compared to those who do not have the disease, according to a study funded by the National Institutes of Health, but hearing screenings are often not part of the regular regimen of care for people with diabetes.

If you think you might be at risk for developing diabetes and want to get your hearing checked, call our office at 904-399-0350 to schedule a hearing test.

CenterOne Featured in Florida DOCTOR

Florida DOCTOR has featured Dr. Doug Green and CenterOne Surgery Center and its mission of providing high quality, cost effective outpatient surgery to the community.  “CenterOne Surgery Center started with a group of doctors who really cared about providing the best quality of care and service,” says Dr. Green, one of its founding physicians and founder of Jacksonville Hearing and Balance Institute.  “We all had the same vision.”

Surgical specialties available at CenterOne include orthopedics, pain management, pediatric/adult ENT, neurosurgery, podiatry, otology/neurotology, urology, plastic surgery, hand surgery, general surgery and more.  CenterOne has been awarded the certificate of accreditation from the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC).  It is contracted with all major insurance carriers and is fully licensed by the state of Florida and certified by Medicare. Read the entire Florida DOCTOR article.

Spring Along to Better Hearing!

Our spring newsletter is almost here! If you would like to receive it, scroll to the bottom of this page to subscribe to our email list! You can also sign up on our Facebook page.

Getting “In the Loop”

Many patients have been pleased to learn about the addition of a hearing loop to our waiting rooms. We have received positive feedback from patients who are delighted to find that they can take advantage of this technology.

Hearing loops are devices that transmit sound from microphones, loudspeakers or even TVs directly to portable receivers (such as hearing aids, cochlear implants or headsets). The loops rely on tiny technology in the portable receiver called a telecoil, which acts like an antenna relaying sounds directly into the ear. The advantage of this system is due to an improved signal-to-noise (SNR) ratio. Because the signal of interest (e.g., TV, microphone) is delivered directly to the hearing aid, interference from background noise is significantly reduced. Improving hearing in the presence of background noise is one of the biggest challenges in the rehabilitation of hearing impaired patients. Telecoil systems are one way to effectively improve hearing in this environment in a cost-effective, easy to use manner.

At this time, we are only aware of one other hearing loop installed in Jacksonville- at a check-out register at Whole Foods in Mandarin.

Here are some FAQs from the Hearing Loss Association of America:

1. Why are hearing loops needed? Don’t hearing aids enable hearing?

Today’s digital hearing aids effectively enhance hearing in conversational settings. Yet for many people with hearing loss the sound becomes unclear when auditorium or TV loudspeakers are at a distance, when the context is noisy, or when room acoustics reverberate sound. A hearing loop magnetically transfers the microphone or TV sound signal to hearing aids and cochlear implants with a tiny, inexpensive “telecoil” receiver. This transforms the instruments into in-the-ear loudspeakers that deliver sound customized for one’s own hearing loss. View a demonstration here.

2. How many hearing aids have a telecoil for receiving hearing loop input?

Hearing Review (April, 2008) reported almost two-thirds of hearing aids sold now include a telecoil, up from 37 percent in 2001.  In its 2009 reviews of hearing aid models, the Hearing Review Products showed that most hearing aids—including all 35 in-the-ear models—now come with telecoils, as do newer cochlear implants.

3. Can hearing loops serve those without telecoils or without hearing aids?

Yes, all forms of assistive listening, including hearing loops, come with portable receivers and headsets (though most of these type units go unused).

4. What does a hearing loop cost?

Costs range from $100 to $300 for self-installed home TV room loops up to several thousand dollars for professional installation in an average-sized auditorium or worship space. Most churches can install a hearing loop for little or no more than the cost of one pair of high end hearing aids, though a large facility with embedded metal will be more expensive.

This is the emblem displayed at locations which have a hearing loop installed:

Recent Hearing Loss Statistics

Research on hearing loss indicates:

  • 10% of all Americans have some hearing loss
  • 14% of American adults have “a little trouble hearing”
  • 3.4% of American adults have “a lot of trouble hearing” or are deaf
  • 30% of all people over the age of 65 have hearing loss
  • 65% of all people over the age of 85 have hearing loss
  • Over 75% of people with hearing loss lost their hearing after the age of 19
  • 50% of people with hearing loss are of working age (18 – 64)
  • 83 out of every 1000 children in the United States have an educationally significant hearing loss
  • 3 of every 1000 babies born in the United States has a hearing loss
  • 75% of people who could benefit from hearing aids are not using them

Gallaudet Research Institute
http://clerccenter.gallaudet.edu/InfoToGo/

National Center for Health Statistics
http://www.cdc.gov/nchs

Disclaimer:
The information and reference materials included on this website are intended solely for the general information and education purposes of the reader. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice or to diagnose health problems. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to discuss the information presented here.

How To Get the Best Results From Your Hearing Aid

The best way to achieve maximum benefit with hearing aids is to wear them whenever you’re awake, not just when you think you ‘need to hear’.  Those who wear them inconsistently don’t hear as well in different listening situations as those who wear them all the time.

Using your hearing aid only occasionally just sets you up for unnecessary frustration.  Adjusting to the different quality of sound you will hear takes time and practice.  Think of it like your golf or tennis swing—if you only play every now and then, you’ll be out of practice and won’t enjoy the experience.  Your clubs, your racket or your hearing aids will get tossed in the closet.  The more you practice, whether on the course, the court or in listening with your hearing aid, the better you’ll perform and the more satisfied you’ll be.

Disclaimer:
The information and reference materials included on this website are intended solely for the general information and education purposes of the reader. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice or to diagnose health problems. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to discuss the information presented here.

Could You Have Hearing Loss?

  • Do you often feel that people are mumbling or not speaking clearly and have to ask them to speak up or repeat?
  • Do you find it difficult to follow conversation in a noisy restaurant or crowded room?
  • Do you experience ringing noises in your ears?
  • Do you hear better with one ear than with the other?
  • Have you been exposed regularly to loud noise at work, during recreation or in military service?
  • Do people tell you that you play the TV or radio too loudly?
  • Do you sometimes fail to hear your doorbell or telephone?
  • Do you find it difficult to understand a speaker at a public meeting or religious service?

If you answered YES to two or more of the above questions, you may have some hearing loss. Please call for an appointment 904.399.0350 if you suspect that you or a family member may be experiencing some loss of hearing.

Disclaimer:
The information and reference materials included on this website are intended solely for the general information and education purposes of the reader. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice or to diagnose health problems. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to discuss the information presented here.

Spotlight: Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo

Got vertigo?  Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (or BPPV) is one of the most common causes of the disorienting sensation of spinning or whirling.   It is caused by a disorder of the balance center of the inner ear; specifically the displacement of the calcium carbonate crystals that are normally found there.  These crystals play an important role in sensing various head movements.  When they become dislodged from their normal location, they cause abnormal irritation. With subsequent head movements, such as rolling over in bed or looking upwards, these “relocated” crystals will bring on feelings of vertigo.

Treatment for BPPV involves specialized positioning maneuvers, called the ‘Epley’ procedure, that are done in the office.  These can be effective in up to 80% of cases and are very well-tolerated. In rare situations, surgery may be required to help stop repeated episodes of positional vertigo.

BPPV is extremely common in people over 50.  The precise cause is usually not known, but degenerative changes in the inner ear are one possible explanation. BPPV will commonly occur in patients that have sustained a head injury, or in those who have suffered from a viral inner ear infection, such as vestibular neuritis or labyrinthitis.

Disclaimer:
The information and reference materials included on this website are intended solely for the general information and education purposes of the reader. They are not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice or to diagnose health problems. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to discuss the information presented here.

What is Neurotology?

Neurotology is the study and practice of medical and surgical disorders that involve the ear, adjacent brain, and the nerve connections within this region (known as the lateral skull base). In addition to all disorders of hearing and balance, Neurotologists also treat disorders of the facial nerve, tumors of the inner ear and skull base, and abnormal connections between the brain and temporal bone. In actuality, the meanings of the terms Otology and Neurotology overlap quite a bit. Nevertheless, a Neurotologist’s training provides the ability to treat disorders, ranging from simple to complex, that involve the area of the temporal bone and lateral skull base.

What is Otology?

Otology is the study and practice of medical and surgical disorders of the ear. These include disorders related to hearing and balance. Some common problems treated by Neurotologists include infections of the ear canal and middle ear (including cholesteatoma and chronic otitis media), eardrum perforations, hearing loss (including conductive, mixed, and sensorineural types), vertigo, and ear ringing. Neurotologists possess Ear, Nose, and Throat training but go on to complete additional fellowship training focusing on Otology and Neurotology.