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 individuals probably don’t even know that the name for those bird-songs is the “dawn chorus”. For whatever reason, birds see the sun coming up and decide to start singing their favorite songs. The songs of these birds, when they’re all sounding together, are a lovely symphony.
But you might not hear the “dawn chorus” at all if you have untreated hearing loss. Which is a pity.
There are a lot of incredible sounds during the summer besides birdsongs that you could be missing. And if you find yourself oblivious to the sounds of summer, it could be the result of some undiagnosed (or diagnosed and neglected) hearing loss. The good news in these cases is that a device like a hearing aid could help you appreciate and more fully enjoy your summer.
The sounds of summer
When you think about summer, you most likely begin by imagining the sun in a blue sky. And, a really, really hot sun (whew). And then you begin to visualize the summer soundtrack that goes along with this vision. Some sounds you may think about:
- The sound of birds chirping, particularly in the spring during, ahem, mating season. (Humans aren’t the only species to employ love songs.)
- The crashing of waves on the beach (or a babbling brook if you’re in a more landlocked area).
- The buzzing of bees as they fly around pollinating flowers and helping the landscape bloom.
- Something as basic as your grandkids laughing, maybe as they run around the yard or as you watch a baseball game with each other.
- The sound of frogs croaking at night, especially in the early hours of the evening.
You get the point. Summer is lively with amazing sounds. The feeling and vibe of summer are significantly enhanced by these sounds. Plus, there is so much pleasure in these simple sounds themselves.
It’s feasible that hearing loss may have crept up on you, especially if these or any other summer sounds seem to be different to you these days. Once you’ve noticed that issue, the next step is to take action.
Your summer can be more enjoyable with hearing aids
For most, hearing aids are really about building connections. Communication is key. You’ll be more mindful of what’s happening around you, better able to communicate with people around you, and enjoy the sounds in your world. And that’s especially important at those summer barbecues, for instance.
Contemporary hearing aids have some incredible technology that will help you savor those summer sounds. Here are some examples of some of that potent technology:
- Noise reduction: You’ll want to get 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 too. Noise reduction features are common in modern hearing aids so you will be capable of dialing in the sounds you want to hear.
- Automatic programming: Contemporary hearing aids can automatically adapt to new surroundings or times of day, depending on how they’re programmed. This makes them simpler to use and more reliable.
- Smartphone compatibility: You can sync your hearing aids to your smartphone and start enjoying all sorts of features. Many phones will now permit you to download apps that help you manage the settings on your hearing aids, so you can adjust for birdsong or grandchildren’s laughter depending on what you want to hear at that time.
- Rechargeability: You can recharge your hearing aid while sleeping and get full batteries all through the day. Basically, you can charge your hearing aids the same way you charge your cellphone. And when you travel with your hearing aids, it becomes very stress free.
- Machine learning: Cutting-edge algorithms (called machine learning) can help your hearing aids adapt to what you need, even before you know you need it. This is especially convenient when filtering sounds or in a noisy environment.
- Bluetooth Connectivity: Boating on the lake and want to enjoy some tracks? Well, your hearing aids can be synced to the boat’s stereo using Bluetooth.
We can help you learn how your specific hearing needs can be met by your hearing aids (you can ask us if you can take your hearing aids into the water or on a mountain hike for example). Hearing aids and water-sports don’t always get along. But you will have a richer overall summer experience with your hearing aids.
You’ll also want to ask us some standard questions about your hearing aid models. For instance, you should ask, can hot weather affect my hearing aids? And you should also ask, how do I safeguard my hearing aids from moisture in the air? The answer to both will depend on the model of hearing aid you use.
Maybe stay away from these sounds
Some summer sounds, unlike the dawn chorus, will be harmful to your hearing and you should be certain to steer clear of them. These are sounds that are, well, loud! And everybody’s ears are at risk even if they don’t have pre-existing hearing loss. Here are a few of those sounds:
- Boat engines: Be careful of how close you get and how long you spend near these engines because they’re very loud. When you’re fishing, turn the engine off. Or, even better, pop in some earplugs for the entirety of your boat trip.
- Fireworks: The dogs are on to something. Your hearing can most certainly be damaged by fireworks. This goes for both commercial and home launched fireworks. Best to simply stay away from fireworks completely.
- Live music: It’s great fun to attend a live music concert but the loud volume can be harmful to your hearing. This means you may want to be selective about which shows you see (rather than attending a festival every weekend).
This is only a partial list. 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 able to, or even want to, avoid all loud noises during the summer. So what can you do? Wearing ear protection is the best strategy. For instance, before you go to a live show, put in a set of earplugs so you can minimize a lot of the damage. You just need to make sure you’re using effective ear protection.
Have fun this summer and enjoy the sounds
If you are dealing with hearing loss, the sounds of summer might feel like they’re growing further and further away (even as the heat of summer becomes more and more oppressive). Which means, much of the joy of the season could pass you by.
Getting the most from your summer then, might mean coming to see us. We will be able to identify whether your hearing is waning or not, and what kind of hearing aid will be best for your situation.
So start here if you’re ready to appreciate the dawn chorus. And you’ll also be able to enjoy all of the other wonderful summer sounds.
Get your hearing tuned up this summer. Make an appointment today to find out which hearing aids are best for you!