tel: 0345 222 0579      email: mail@helpinhearing.co.uk

  • Technology days video footage

    Technology Days Video Footage

    In November 2018 we held events at South Buckinghamshire Golf Club in Stoke Poges and the Harleyford Golf Club in Marlow. At the events, seven hearing aid manufacturers presented the latest innovations in hearing aid technology. This short video shows footage from the two days.

    We’d like to thank everyone who attended the days and also all the manufacturers who attended and presented.

     

     

    Thank you to our hearing technology manufacturers for their talks:

    Widex
    Unitron
    Oticon
    Signia
    Starkey
    Resound
    Phonak

  • What are the different styles of hearing aids available?

    If you’re considering hearing aids, you may find the different types confusing. In this blog post, you can discover more about the different styles of hearing aids available today.

    Totally Invisible Hearing Aid LyricTotally invisible

    The Phonak Lyric is the world’s first 100% invisible hearing aid. It is placed entirely inside your ear canal by a trained audiologist, remaining completely invisible from view. The Lyric requires no daily changing/insertion, no batteries, no filters and is sweat-proof, shower-proof and remains in place 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for months at a time.

    IIC Hearing Aid Phonak Virto B TitaniumInvisible in the canal

    The Invisible In Canal hearing aid (IIC) fits deep in the ear, completely out of view past the second bend of the ear canal, providing an invisible fit. The cosmetic advantages of this hearing aid can appeal to a wide variety of people and cater for mild to moderately severe hearing losses.

    BTE Hearing Aid Starkey Muse wireless miniBTEBehind the ear

    This hearing aid is the most versatile and suits all types of hearing difficulties. It can amplify sounds more than any other kind of digital hearing aid. However, it is the most visible as it hooks over the top of your ear.

    Styletto colour rangeOpen fit

    This is a scaled-down version of the previous hearing aid and thus is a lot smaller in size. Therefore, they tend to be of help to those who have mild to moderate hearing difficulty.

    CIC Hearing Aid Primax Deep RedCompletely in the canal (CIC) hearing aid

    This hearing aid style is one that is actually moulded so that it fits completely inside the individual’s ear canal. A lot of people go for this option as it is the least visible and thus people don’t tend to notice it. A completely in the canal hearing aid tends to be best suited for those who have mild to moderate hearing loss. Because it’s inside the ear it is also easy to use with devices, such as mobile phones. And it is unlikely that you will pick up a lot of environmental noise, such as wind.

    In the canal hearing aids - ITCIn the canal (ITC) hearing aid

    The difference between this hearing aid and the one mentioned previously is the fact that an in the canal hearing aid only fits partially into the ear canal. Nonetheless, it still treats mild to moderate hearing loss, as does a completely in the canal device. The benefit this type of hearing aid has over the one just mentioned is the fact that you can typically benefit from added features, such as volume control.

    In the ear hearing aids - ITEFull shell in the ear (ITE) hearing aid

    This type of device treats a wider range of people as it can help those who have severe hearing loss. Nonetheless, the downside is that the full shell device is a lot more visible than other digital hearing aids. This is because it covers the majority of the ear’s bowl-shaped part. However, you benefit from longer battery life and ease of use. After all, this hearing aid is a lot easier to insert in comparison to the ITC options.

    Half shell hearing aid

    And finally, the difference between this hearing aid and the one previously mentioned is the fact that it only covers the lower part of your ear. Because of this, it only has the scope to treat up to moderate loss of hearing. This is a great option for those who are looking for something in between a full shell and an in the canal device.

    Different styles of hearing aids – where to find out more

    If you think you or a loved one may need hearing assistance, read more on our Hearing Consultation page, where we describe the process involved in having a full audiology assessment at one of our hearing clinics, either in Farnham Common or Marlow, in Buckinghamshire. 

    Or please get in touch to discuss your hearing requirements.

  • How to drive safely with hearing loss

    How to drive safely with hearing loss – top tips revealed

    While the sense of sight is the most important aspect when driving, the sense of hearing is equally helpful. It helps you hear the raucous horn of an irritated driver, detect approaching emergency vehicles, or even remind you that your indicators are on. People with hearing loss do not drive any more dangerously than other drivers. However, it never hurts to take extra safety precautions when on the road. Keep these tips on how to drive safely with hearing loss in mind anytime you’re behind the wheel:

    Eliminate distractions

    Due to technological advancements, today’s hearing aids are marvels. They feature sensitive microphones tailored to differentiate between background noises and speech. Even with hearing aids, it’s very important to avoid any form of distractions.

    Here’s what you need to do:

    • Reduce your car’s audio volume
    • If you have passengers, ask them to keep their conversation to a minimum
    • Always close your car window
    • Avoid using your phone, drinking, eating

    Use your vision (rely on visual clues)

    Your sight should compensate for your reduced hearing ability. While good sight is essential for all drivers, it’s a must-have if you’re suffering from hearing loss.

    Some of the things you can do to amplify your vision include:

    • Always ensure your windows and windscreen are clean
    • Buy an extended rear view mirror
    • Keep your attention focused and eyes on the road
    • Be on the lookout for flashing lights at railway crossings and on approaching vehicles

    Have a set of hearing aids to improve your hearing performance

    Another way of becoming a safer driver is by purchasing and using hearing aids. They make it effortless to focus on sounds (warning signals, sirens, and horns) which matter on the road.

    Do you already own hearing aids? If yes, take these extra precautions when you’re driving:

    • Have your hearing assessed frequently
    • Always wear your hearing aids when driving
    • Always have an additional set of batteries

    Your car must be in top condition at all times

    For drivers with hearing loss, keeping a car in optimum working condition is an absolute necessity. Strange car noises might occur unheard, which can turn out to be a safety hazard not only to you and your passengers, but to other drivers as well. Consequently, you must stay up to date when it comes to routine maintenance to ensure the vehicle is in top condition. 

    Whether you have hearing challenges or hear well, there’s no doubt that driving demands a lot of responsibility. Part of the responsibility is to take care of your safety and that of others on the road. The above are just some of the tips to help you drive safely with hearing loss.

    How to drive safely with hearing loss – where to find out more

    If you think your hearing needs to be assessed, do get in touch with us and we can arrange a thorough hearing check-up. We also now provide several brands of hearing aids that are rechargeable so if you’re travelling away from home you can take your charger with you and not have to rely on batteries. 

    Image: Driving a car by Erik Starck licensed under Creative commons 4

  • Innovations in hearing aid technology

    Innovations in hearing aid technology

    For many people, innovations and hearing aid technology are not phrases that fit naturally together. However, for anyone who uses a hearing aid, it’s comforting to know that the industry is advancing and evolving just as much as any technology sector, bringing about increases in efficiency and offering users additional features. Here are some of the biggest innovations in hearing aid technology that 2018 has brought us so far.

    1. OVP (own voice processing)

    A revolutionary new feature of hearing aids is OVP, which allows the user to hear their own voice differently from everything else. By using a completely separate computer system which is dedicated to adapting and modulating the user’s own voice, it reduces the sound and quality problems that often come with users hearing their own speech. In addition, it means that those hearing aid users who would have traditionally been fitted with open dome aids can now be fitted with closed domes instead, without any auditory occlusion being caused.

    2. Real-time care

    As with everything, hearing aids are moving into the digital world, and a great new innovation is remote assistance and real-time care. For users who are experiencing a problem with their digital hearing aid, some companies provide real-time care through the use of an app, which can be downloaded straight onto a tablet or smartphone. This means that you or your remote audiologist can make changes to the features and settings of your hearing aid via the app, solving the problem quickly and easily, without the need to visit your audiology clinic for a minor adjustment.

    3. Rechargeable hearing aids

    While rechargeable hearing aids have existed previously, their capabilities were limited, with a short battery life. They were also usually only available with certain types of hearing devices, usually a receiver in canal hearing aids. However, this year has brought about a huge increase in the amount of lithium ion rechargeable hearing aids so that most aids now have the rechargeable option. A further development soon scheduled for release is Fuel Cell technology which means that aids will only need to be charged for minutes and yet will last for hours.

    Innovations in hearing aid technology – where to find out more

    Please see our “Hearing Aid Types” page for an idea of how we can help you. For a full hearing assessment or just some advice on solutions that would suit your hearing and your lifestyle, please contact us.

    Attend our technology days – November 2018

    We are holding two technology days to showcase the latest launches by all the leading hearing aid manufacturers. There will be a mini exhibition open to the public to show just how far innovations in hearing aid technology have progressed. See and feel the latest models and find out how they can enhance your hearing better than ever. Combined with this, there will be a series of talks on each day which will give you an insight into future technology that is almost hard to believe, from aids that will translate from a foreign language to devices that will link with apps to monitor your health. To find out more, see our Technology Days announcement.

     

    Image: nicely dressed woman using her phone in a car by perzonseo licensed under Creative commons 4

  • Hearing technology days

    Hearing Technology Days

    Exhibition and talks by the UK’s leading hearing suppliers at our hearing technology days in November

    Join us for an exhibition of multi-functional hearing aids.  Hear about exciting new developments including:

    • Automatic foreign language translation facility
    • Remote contact with your audiologist
    • Health and fitness tracking on mobile apps
    • Aids that recharge in seconds & last for hours

    Two days – two venues

    MARLOW

    Hearing technology day, Marlow

    Wednesday 28th November 2018
    10:00am – 4:00pm
    Harleyford Golf Club
    Henley Road, Marlow SL7 2SP

    STOKE POGES

    The South Buckinghamshire Golf Club

    Thursday 29th November 2018
    10:00am – 4:00pm
    The South Buckinghamshire Golf Club
    Park Road, Stoke Poges SL2 4PJ

    Don’t miss out on enhancing your life with the most advanced hearing technology
    There is no charge to attend but places are limited.
    For further details and to book, call or email:

    To book:

    Call: 0345 222 0579
    Or Email Us

    Schedule of Talks

    10:15am Energy Cell Technology, Widex
    11:00am The Flex Ecosystem, Unitron
    11:45am The Future of Hearing Aids, Oticon
    1:15pm The Power & Convenience of Rechargeable Hearing Aids, Signia
    2:00pm A New Dimension in Hearing, Starkey
    2:45pm Remote Assist and Personalising Hearing Care, GN Resound
    3:30pm Future concepts for Mobile Phone Conversations, Phonak

    Plus Exclusive Offers, Vouchers and Prize Draw

    Exclusive offers

    Exclusive offers and a complimentary hearing assessment voucher for all visitors worth £120

     

     

    Plus:

    • £500 off a pair of Widex Evoke hearing aids
    • Free TV streamer or remote control with every pair of hearing aids purchased from GN Resound
    • Free ConnectClip with every Binaural order of OPNs from Oticon
    • Free upgrade in technology level from Unitron
    • Free mini mobile, remote mic or remote control plus a complimentary charger on various Starkey ranges at certain technology levels
    • • £500 off any pair of Signia hearing aids, including the new Silk and Styletto models
    • A free TV Connect for the new Marvel aid by Phonak

    Special offers & prizes at our hearing technology days

     

    Win a hamper

    All visitors can enter our prize draw to win a luxury Fortnum & Mason Christmas Hamper.

    Win a Fortnum & Mason Christmas Hamper

     

    To book:

    Call: 0345 222 0579
    Or Email Us

     

    PLEASE NOTE: The offers shown are provided by Help in Hearing partners attending the events, and are subject to change based on availability. 

  • Quiz night October 2018

    Quiz Night Success – Hearing Dogs for Deaf People – October 2018

    We are delighted to announce that we raised £450 for Hearing Dogs for Deaf People at our Quiz Night last week. Held at the South Buckinghamshire Golf Club, the event was great fun and very popular, with eight teams competing for the luxury prize of a Fortnum & Mason hamper.

    We kicked off with an interesting talk by Mike & Clare Coote, dedicated volunteers for the charity, who gave us an insight into the commitment of taking on a puppy and the training guidelines that go with it. Their delightful Hearing Dog puppies Cooper and Hedley, pictured below, also attended the event.

    Selma, with Mike & Clare Coote
    (Left to Right): Clare & Mike Coote, Selma
    Hearing dog puppies, Cooper and Hedley
    Hearing dog puppies, Cooper & Hedley

    The charity provides the invaluable gift of independence, confidence and companionship to more and more deaf people. Hearing Dogs receives no government funding and relies on the generosity of members of the public, trusts and companies to continue its important work.

    The winning team, “The Old Crocks”, won the Fortnum & Mason hamper, donated by Signia Hearing Aids. We look forward to seeing them bid for the champion title once again at our next Quiz Night in the Spring. Look out for further details.

  • Evolution of hearing aids

    How hearing aids are evolving

    In the technology boom of the last few years, some of the biggest everyday improvements have been seen in the field of audiology. Only a generation ago, hearing aids could be bulky and difficult to adjust, very unlike the discreet digital devices of today. The hearing aids we use now are capable of filtering and processing sound to deliver clarity and quality across a range of environments with no annoying feedback. They’re fitted to the exact needs of the wearer so that the degree and type of hearing loss is addressed precisely and the hearing aid fits the individual’s lifestyle.

    The rise of wearable technology

    Many hearing aids now use processors like the ones in your phone or computer to assess the type and quality of sound they need to deliver and to work with systems like hearing induction loops. In the future, we can look forward to even more technical advances, with hearing aids offering features that allow them to communicate directly with your phone, household appliances and music player – they may even offer a direct translation service.

    Your hearing aid options

    It’s important that a hearing aid matches the hearing health needs, ear shape and lifestyle of the person using it. For many years, the only hearing aids available were worn on the body or behind the ear. Now, many people prefer a model that’s worn inside the ear, so that it’s out of the way and not easily visible. However, a behind-the-ear model can still be a better choice for children, as it is hard to damage and will not need frequent replacement as the child grows. Some more severe degrees of hearing loss also need to be addressed with a more powerful behind-the-ear device. Though these factors come into play, ultimately, the type of hearing aid you need is determined by your individuality, your hearing health needs and your choice.

    Hearing aids evolution – where to find out more

    Please see our “Hearing Aid Types” page for an idea of how we can help you. For a full hearing assessment or just some advice on solutions that would suit your hearing and your lifestyle, please contact us.

    Attend our technology days – November 2018

    We are holding two technology days to showcase the latest launches by all the leading hearing aid manufacturers. There will be a mini exhibition open to the public to show just how far technology has progressed. See and feel the latest models and find out how they can enhance your hearing better than ever. Combined with this, there will be a series of talks on each day which will give you an insight into future technology that is almost hard to believe. To find out more, see our Technology Days announcement.

  • Can mindfulness help tinnitus?

    Can mindfulness help tinnitus?

    We have invited local MBCT company Paron Mindfulness to run a workshop at our Marlow Tinnitus Support Group on October 15th. To give you an insight into the benefits of mindfulness, Costas Lambropoulos and Dr Charlotte Morris have written this exclusive guest editorial especially for our clients.

    Mindfulness - waterfallCan mindfulness help your tinnitus?

    Living with a condition such as tinnitus can be challenging. The experience of tinnitus and how it affects your daily life and wellbeing will be different for everyone. You may feel upset about the changes it has brought into your life, you may feel frustrated or angry, disheartened about the future or feel that others don’t understand or appreciate what it is like living with tinnitus.

    There may be times when you feel like you have turned a corner and other times when it feels like you cannot bear it for another moment. At these times it might be that you end up withdrawing from activities, become preoccupied with the sound or negative thoughts, or just run around keeping busy in order to hold the difficult feelings at bay and trying to ignore them. Either way, it is very easy to lose perspective and lose touch with the richness of the life that is possible. In this article we look at whether mindfulness can help with your tinnitus symptoms.

    What is mindfulness?

    Mindfulness is a meditation practice which seeks to cultivate awareness of the present moment. Mindfulness is not new and is rooted in ancient wisdom and practices. In the last 40 years, there has been a growing interest in whether Mindfulness can help with some of the challenges of modern life, including how to live well whatever difficulties we face.

    Through meditation practice, mindfulness enables us to be sensitive to the way we react to what appears in our lives moment by moment. We can begin to become aware of the way in which we tend to get caught up in trying to escape or avoid what we don’t like and hang on to pleasant experiences. Of course, it is natural to want to do this, but it does mean that most of the time we are not conscious of how quickly and habitually we react to our experience, sometimes in ways that are very unhelpful. We can train ourselves to develop an accurate awareness of what our experience actually is, rather than the story that pops into our mind immediately. This can give us the space to choose how we would like to respond rather than be pulled into an automatic stream of reactions.

    How mindfulness can help

    Mindfulness - BoatMindfulness is not a quick fix and it is not an approach that will appeal to, or suit, everyone. However, it can help us to change how we relate to our experience of tinnitus and the distress that it can cause. There is an old Buddhist analogy that seeks to help us understand our experience of suffering:

    “When an ordinary person experiences pain (either physical or emotional pain) they worry, agonise and feel distraught. Then they feel two types of pain, one physical and one mental. It’s as if this person was pierced by an arrow, and then immediately afterwards by a second arrow, and they experience the pain of two arrows.”

    Based on this understanding of suffering, our distress is not only related to the discomfort we might experience with tinnitus or the actual sensations or pitch of the sound that are present. It is our interpretation of what is taking place and the meaning we give to this that can either help us cope or intensify our distress and our tendency to react. It is as if the sound or high pitch might be the first arrow and our thoughts and reactions are a second arrow that penetrates even further and can make us feel helpless, angry or anxious. Sometimes the “noise” of our minds can create more distress than just the noise and symptoms of tinnitus.

    Fresh and friendly curiosity

    Mindfulness - forestIn his book “Full Catastrophe Living” Jon Kabat-Zinn refers to certain attitudes that can aid us in our mindfulness practice and allow us to relate to our moment-to-moment experience in a more helpful way. These attitudes can be particularly beneficial and support us at times when we feel overwhelmed by our experience or wish it wasn’t there.

    For example, approaching the present with a fresh and friendly curiosity and a non-judgemental attitude can make a significant difference to how we experience things in everyday life. This applies to any experiences, whether the mind tends to label them as pleasant or unpleasant. So rather than immediately striving to fix what we don’t like, we have a new path that, through practice, can minimise the levels of distress we experience and possibly maximise the pleasure of any given moment.

    Mindfulness is often taught in an eight-week programme. These courses start very simply, for example with some eating practices, that help us to become aware how often we are not with our present moment experience. Building on this foundation, we can begin to explore what it is like to intentionally bring ourselves into the present. Through practice, we may begin to appreciate that tinnitus is only one part of our experience – there are also may other sensations and experiences that are here in any moment. A mindfulness course can help us to discover a new way of approaching our body, senses, thoughts and feelings. The practice can gradually help us not just notice discomfort and difficulty but also ease and joy in our everyday life.

    About Paron Mindfulness

    Paron Mindfulness is a partnership between Dr Charlotte Morris and Costas Lambropoulos. They have trained as Mindfulness Teachers at the Oxford Mindfulness Centre and have been teaching Mindfulness in the NHS and in private practice. Charlotte and Costas have been delivering mindfulness courses for people with long-term conditions for the last five years. They are particularly interested in exploring how mindfulness practice can enhance our sense of wellbeing. Charlotte and Costas deliver workshops, courses and retreats with the intention of practicing mindfulness meditations and encouraging participants to explore how mindfulness can help them in their own lives. For more information on upcoming events please visit our website or email us. 

    Can mindfulness help tinnitus? – Where to find out more

    To discuss your symptoms of tinnitus or have a full hearing check, please get in touch

    You can also read more about tinnitus on our Tinnitus Explained page.

    Head over to our Tinnitus Management page to find out the various options available for management of your symptoms.

    We hold regular Tinnitus Support Group events for people living in the Marlow and Farnham Common areas of Buckinghamshire. Find out the date of our next events and topics to be covered by visiting our Tinnitus Support Group page.

  • Tinnitus Spotify playlist from the BTA

    Relief from tinnitus with Spotify Ambient Sounds playlist from BTA

    Today we came across the Ambient Sounds Spotify playlist put together by the British Tinnitus Association (BTA), and we think you could find it helpful.

    A popular way to tackle intrusive tinnitus is to give the brain something else to focus on which draws your attention away from the tinnitus sound but doesn’t have to constantly and actively stimulate the brain like talk radio or music does. The playlist has 31 tracks, playing a mix of ambient sounds for you to try. With track titles such as River and Rain in the Forest, Whispering Winds over the Pines and Small Waves Hitting Beach, there may be something there that could help alleviate your tinnitus sounds.

    Tinnitus Spotify playlist – how to play it

    The BTA recommend that you play the tracks at a volume just below the level of your tinnitus. You’re not trying to drown out the tinnitus – this way your brain will be actively choosing to listen to the music and push your tinnitus into the background.

    Just click on this link or the button below to go directly to the Spotify playlist. If you already have a Spotify account, it will ask you to log in first and then you will see the playlist. If you don’t have a Spotify playlist, it will prompt you to sign up.

    Listen to the playlist

    We’d love to hear your feedback on the playlist, so please feel free to give us your comments below.

    Tinnitus – more information

    Did you know we hold a regular Tinnitus Support Group for people living in the Marlow or Farnham Common areas of Buckinghamshire? Visit our Tinnitus Support Group page to see details of the next event near you.

    You can also visit our Tinnitus Explained page to find out more about tinnitus. 

    And you can also visit our Tinnitus Management page to learn some of the methods we can use to help with your tinnitus symptoms.

    Finally, if you’d like to book an appointment for a tinnitus hearing check or talk to us about tinnitus, please get in touch.

     

     

  • Causes of hearing loss

    3 surprising habits which can lead to hearing loss

    Aside from the odd infection and build-up of ear wax, it’s easy to view our ears as fairly simple organs. Though many people don’t realise it, other parts of your body can have a direct impact on the state of your ears. Here are three seemingly unrelated issues that are among the causes of hearing loss.

    Smoking

    No surprise here. If you’re a smoker, you regularly hear how bad it is for you from friends, family, doctors and even cigarette packets. Though the most glaring symptoms are in your respiratory and cardiovascular systems, smoking can also contribute to hearing loss.

    The harmful chemicals in tobacco smoke are detrimental to your inner ear’s ability to transmit vibrations to your brain, and the more you smoke, the more damage you’ll cause to your ear. Though you’ve probably heard this a million times before, second-hand smoke will have the exact same effects on those around you.

    Overeating and under-exercising

    Being overweight places you at risk of many different problems, from circulatory trouble to diabetes to heart problems. Though many aren’t aware of it, all of these health issues have been linked to hearing loss. One 2013 study from the US Brigham and Women’s Hospital found that women with higher body mass indexes were 17% more likely to experience some form of hearing loss.

    The study also established that non-strenuous physical activity, such as walking for at least two hours per week, lowered the risk of weight-related hearing loss. Of course, this is just one way body weight affects your health – it’s never too late to establish some healthier habits!

    Not having regular dental check-ups

    Perhaps the most surprising habit that can lead to hearing loss is taking a blasé approach to your dental health. When you don’t keep an eye on your pearly whites, it can allow harmful bacteria to get into the bloodstream, clogging and constricting the arteries that carry blood to the brain. This can cause interference in the way your brain receives signals from your auditory nerve. Poor oral health can also increase your risk of heart problems, diabetes and stroke, which have all been linked with hearing loss.

    Causes of hearing loss – where to find out more

    If you’d like to know more about how to protect your hearing, or if you’d like to have a hearing check-up, please contact us

    Or you can learn more on our Hearing Protection web page.