Headphones made their debut in 1890.

They weighed 10 pounds and were used by phone operators!

By 1910 an engineer Nathaniel Baldwin created a lighter version for the Navy that looks pretty much the same as what we’re using today!

In 1958 Wisconsin native and jazz lover John Koss covered mini speakers with cardboard and sofa foam and brought headphones to the masses.

Headphones became a fashion statement in the late 2000’s Dr. Dre’s Beats and Skullcandy’s bright colors and bling.

Ear buds are now becoming more popular and may be the source of increased hearing loss in the younger generations. 

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For those of you that remember the days of the Walkman…it’s likely you’ve cranked the volume all the way up and rocked out a time or two.

I played my Guns N Roses, Def Leppard, and Poison mix tapes till they wouldn’t work anymore!

If you can relate, it may be time to have your hearing tested. 

Hearing testing isn’t part of an annual health exam but it should be.

The health of your ears has a direct impact on your ability to socialize, learn and interact with your world. 

What could you be missing out on due to decreased hearing?

How do you know if you have a hearing issue?

  • You find yourself asking “what?” a lot
  • You’re turning up the volume on everything lately
  • You’re gravitating to closed captioning when you watch anything
  • You’ve had a few misunderstandings of what you thought someone said
  • You’re avoiding going out to social events because you know you can’t hear what others are saying
  • It seems the birds don’t seem to chirp like they used to
  • You may have been accused of “selective hearing”

Certain exposures can set you up for hearing loss as well from going to concerts frequently, working on heavy machinery, going to race car races, being a musician and working in a factory. 

If you have a history of frequent ear infections as a child or adult you may be prone to hearing loss.

There’s now data showing a certain viral infection caused hearing damage – see for yourself HERE.

Considering most folks have had a viral infection in the last few years, I can’t stress how important it is to get a look at your hearing. 

I recently interviewed Shelli Sonstein, a gal who’s been a radio show host for over 50 years in New York City, and we talked all about her experience with hearing loss and finding the right hearing aids for her.

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While hearing aids aren’t as sexy as a new pair of glasses the technology has come a long way. 

As has the testing and ability to monitor your hearing over time. 

There’s a stigma about hearing aids being for “old people” and I’ve had many clients tell me that audiologists are just out to sell hearing aids. 

The truth is, I’m seeing more hearing loss than ever before in my practice.

Is it due to the recent virus?

Maybe…

… or did it accelerate what was already brewing?

It’s hard to say. 

With free consults at Hear USA locations all over the states and in Canada, as Hear Canada, I highly encourage everyone to get their hearing checked annually. 

Because the ears are tied into your cognition, ability to learn and socialize…

…all things that are crucial to keep the brain in tip top shape I find it incredibly important for me to now recommend hearing testing.

I have to wonder if some of the cognitive signs of aging could be prevented if hearing was optimized with hearing aids.

If you or someone you know may be struggling with their hearing do not hesitate to get them checked out. 

Doctors can do the basics of bone and air conduction testing in their office but audiologists go much deeper.

If you’re aiming to be a life long learner and keep your brain as sharp as possible for as long as you can, checking your hearing annually is worth it. 

And if you know a certain teen that likes to crank their music up in their ear buds or headphones – it’s worth an annual test, to at least get a baseline for them. 

My podcast with Shelli Sonstein comes out tomorrow, Saturday, episode 422 of The Health Fix Podcast, download it where ever you get your podcasts or head to my website HERE to listen directly.

Here’s to your hearing!


Here’s to your health,

Dr. J

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