Hearing & Vision: Dual Sensory Wellness

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Monday, April 27, 2015

Hearing & Vision: Dual Sensory Wellness

Vision & Hearing Health Contributes to an Independent Quality of Life
When was the last time you had your hearing checked?  For many of us, it dates back to third grade when the school nurse pulled us out of gym class. We then had a headset put over our ears and raised our hand when we heard beeps.  Why is it that when it comes to our two most vital senses, Vision & Hearing we routinely have our vision checked but not our hearing?  Even when we have an annual physical, our Doctors don’t check our hearing.

In the late 1990’s, several studies were published that defined a health care diagnosis of Dual Sensory Loss.  Beginning in our mid 30’s, we all begin to experience a decline in both our vision and hearing senses.  With Vision, it is much more obvious as our arms get longer, the print becomes smaller and we immediately start reaching for those readers.  Unfortunately diminished hearing is much more subtle.  As our hearing declines we tend to turn up the volume, guess what is being said, activate closed captions and although you may not realize it, we actually can read lips! 

Studies have shown that for those of us who don’t acknowledge and address Dual Sensory Loss, we will experience isolation, depression and in some instances a higher mortality rate.  It is for this reason that many ophthalmology practices have now expanded their annual eye exams to screen for hearing health.  The premise being, if our patients become 20/20 or what we call 20/Happy and can see the emergency vehicle in front of them, shouldn’t we also ensure that they can also hear the siren behind them? 

The screening takes less than a minute and if necessary will result in your Doctor ordering an expanded hearing exam to determine the extent of your hearing loss.  In many instances, it may simply be a buildup of ear wax or those potatoes our parents always said were growing in our ears.  However, it may also be a more severe situation requiring further testing from an ENT.  The great news is, should the hearing loss be “treatable”, advancements in hearing technology can now restore much of your diminished hearing and allow you to live a more independent, quality of life!

If you haven’t had a hearing screening recently, ask the team at The Eye Care & Surgery Center of New Jersey to schedule an appointment for you.  You will be surprised at what you may be missing!

If you or someone you know is concerned about hearing loss or needs help or evaluation for hearing devices or aids, please call The Eye Care & Surgery Center at 908-789-8999, visit The Eye Care & Surgery Center or facebook.com/eyecareandsurgerycenter to schedule an appointment.

The Eye Care & Surgery Center is located at 592 Springfield Avenue, Westfield, New Jersey 07090, 10 Mountain Boulevard, Warren, New Jersey 07059 and 517 Route One South, Suite 1100, Iselin, New Jersey 08830, and is conveniently located for patients from throughout central and northern New Jersey.