Have you ever slept with the window in your bedroom open and woken up to the beautiful sound of birds singing just as the sun comes up? Most people probably aren’t even aware that the name for those bird-songs is the “dawn chorus”. Birds see the sunrise and, for some reason, decide it’s time to belt out their best melody. Each species has its own set of chirps and notes, and together, they sound like a symphony of nature.
But you might not notice the “dawn chorus” at all if you have neglected hearing loss. Which is a shame.
There are a lot of amazing sounds during the summer besides birdsongs that you may be missing. And you might be missing those summer sounds because you have hearing loss that’s gone undiagnosed or simply dismissed. The good news in these situations is that a device like a hearing aid may help you appreciate and more fully enjoy your summer.
The sounds of summer
When you think about summer, you likely start off imagining the sun in a blue sky. And, a really, really hot sun (whew). And then you begin to visualize the summer soundtrack that comes with this vision. You may be thinking about:
- The sound of birds performing mating songs. (Humans aren’t the only species to use love songs.)
- Something as simple as your grandkids laughing, possibly as they run about the yard or as you catch a baseball game with each other.
- The buzzing of bees as they fly around pollinating flowers and helping nature bloom.
- Peepers and crickets chirping a symphony as the sun sets.
- The babbling of a brook or the crashing of waves.
You get the idea. Summer is lively with amazing sounds. These are the sounds that complete your summer, give it texture, and help create that overall vibe. And these sounds in and of themselves bring great joy.
It’s possible that hearing loss may have snuck up on you, especially if these or any other summer sounds sound to be foreign to you these days. Once you’ve noticed that issue, the next step is to do something about it.
Your summer can be more enjoyable with hearing aids
Building relationships is what hearing aids are really about for most. They’re about communication. You’ll be more mindful of what’s taking place around you, better able to communicate with people around you, and enjoy the sounds in your life. And at those summer barbecues, for instance, that’s even more important.
Contemporary hearing aids have some amazing technology that will help you bask in those summer sounds. For example, most contemporary hearing aids offer:
- Rechargeability: Your battery will stay charged throughout the day after charging while you sleep at night. Basically, you can charge your hearing aids the same way you charge your cellphone. And when you vacation with your hearing aids, it becomes especially stress free.
- Noise reduction: You’ll want to have hearing aids that can differentiate particular sounds (your ears once did this) so you can appreciate those crashing waves without having the traffic behind you amplified as well. Modern hearing aids have significant noise reduction capabilities, so you can hear what you really want to hear.
- Automatic programming: Contemporary hearing aids can automatically adjust to new surroundings or times of day, depending on how you program them. This feature makes them more effective and simpler to use.
- Smartphone compatibility: You can start to enjoy all types of features by syncing your hearing aid to your cellphone. Depending on the specific hearing situation, you will be able to control the settings on your hearing aids using an app you can download on most cell phones.
- Machine learning: Fancy algorithms (called machine learning) can help your hearing aids adjust to what you need, even before you need it. This is particularly convenient when filtering sounds or in a noisy setting.
- Bluetooth Connectivity: Out on the boat and want to enjoy some tracks? Just connect the boat’s radio to your hearing aids using Bluetooth.
You can ask us about how your pair of hearing aids are appropriate for your favorite activities (for instance, you can ask whether you can wear them while you’re going for a swim or hiking up a mountain, that kind of thing). Hearing aids and water-sports don’t always play nice together. But as a whole, your hearing aids will make your summer an all around livelier experience.
You’ll also want to ask us some standard questions about your hearing aid models. For instance, you should ask, can hot weather impact my hearing aids? Also, does humidity have any effect on my hearing aid and how can I protect it? Depending on the model of hearing aid, the answer to these questions will differ.
Some loud sounds you may want to avoid
As much as you love the sound of the dawn chorus, there are some other summer sounds that could actually be damaging to your hearing, so you’ll probably want to avoid them. These noisy sounds are a real hazard! And they’re harmful to everyone’s ears, not just individuals who have pre-existing hearing loss. Here are some of those sounds:
- Boat engines: Be cautious of how close you get and how long you spend around these engines because they’re very loud. When you’re fishing, shut the engine off. Or, even better, pop in some earplugs for the duration of your boat trip.
- Fireworks: The dogs are on to something. Your hearing can definitely be harmed by fireworks. This includes both commercial and home launched fireworks. Best to just avoid fireworks completely.
- Live music: It’s great fun to attend a live music concert but the loud volume can be harmful to your ears. This means you might want to be particular about which shows you see (rather than going to a festival every weekend).
This list is not exhaustive. For individuals who are dealing with hearing loss, summer might have a few less of these loud events.
Having said that, you may not be capable of, or even want to, stay away from all loud noises during the summer. So what’s the solution? Well, you can use ear protection. Putting in a set of earplugs before you see any live music show can mitigate a lot of the damage, for instance. You just need to make certain you’re using effective ear protection.
Enjoy the sounds of summer
If you have hearing loss, the sounds of summer might feel like they’re getting further and further away (even as the heat of summer gets more and more oppressive). Which means, much of the joy of the season could get lost.
Getting the most out of your summer then, may require coming to see us. We will be able to determine whether your hearing is failing or not, and what type of hearing aid will best suit your needs.
So begin here if you’re ready to enjoy the dawn chorus. And you’ll also be able to enjoy all of the other wonderful summer sounds.
Get the most out of your ears this summer and beyond. Call us for a hearing test and discover if hearing aids are the right choice for you.