Thursday, September 29, 2016

What does “looped” mean?

This is a great question.  Some public establishments such as theaters, movie theaters, concert halls, museums etc. will advertise a looped system as an assistive listening technology to their patrons.  This is often particularly helpful to those patrons that wear hearing instruments.  The goal of a looped system is to bring the sound source directly to your ears either via headphone or directly to your hearing device/hearing instruments.  This helps facilitate the listening experience so that patrons can focus on the actual event/performance rather than trying to understand and listen.  How does a loop system work?  The name itself has meaning, a looped system is just that, it means that there is an induction cable that surrounds the area of interest, room, building, hall, etc.  This induction loop generates a magnetic field that can be picked up a hearing instrument with a telecoil or a special handheld loop receiver within that looped area.  The patron, simply switches their hearing instrument into the telecoil program and the induction loop and magnetic field connects and transmits directly to the hearing instrument.  In order to utilize a looped system with your hearing instrument it must have a telecoil or T-coil.  If you are interested in utilizing a public looped system, contact your audiologist, so that they can walk you through the steps using your hearing instruments and program your hearing instruments accordingly. To make an appointment, contact us at 440-205-8848. 

Life sounds great!  Enjoy every moment!





Jane Kukula, AuD & Ashley Spisak, AuD
8897 Mentor Ave
Mentor, Ohio 44060

440-205-8848

Fax: 440-205-9818

Thursday, September 22, 2016

My husband retired from the police force at age 56 without any hearing problems. He wore hearing protection both on the range and when doing loud activities such as mowing the lawn. About three years after retirement he developed significant hearing loss. Why did he have hearing loss at such an early age? Could it be because he used a flip phone on a daily basis?

While many associate hearing loss with the aging process, hearing loss knows no age.  It can happen at any time in life from birth to the later years. Some people are born with it, some develop it over time and others never have hearing trouble.

Hearing loss that happens later in life is usually something that runs in families.  Consider your husband’s parents.  Do they or other siblings have difficulty hearing?  If so, it may be in his genetic makeup to have hearing loss.  Sometimes familial hearing loss can start at an earlier age than expected.

There are many causes of hearing loss, but there are no studies linking hearing loss to cellphone use.  Certainly, exposure to loud sounds is one cause.  Hearing problems are also associated with heart and kidney disease, diabetes and even dementia.  Plus smoking and heavy alcohol use can reduce hearing ability.  Other causes of hearing loss include ear infections, certain medications (some of the chemotherapy drugs), and other ear diseases. 


On the plus side, your husband’s use of hearing protection served him well.  If he had not used it, his hearing would be even more compromised right now.  Encourage him to continue using it with all loud activities.  Plus, he should have regular Audiologic care with an annual hearing check.  Call 440-205-8848 for an appointment if we can help.

Life sounds great!  Enjoy every moment!


Jane Kukula, AuD & Ashley Spisak, AuD
8897 Mentor Ave
Mentor, Ohio 44060
440-205-8848
Fax: 440-205-9818

Thursday, September 15, 2016

I have a severe loss of hearing. Is there anything new in power hearing aids?

It is not often that a new power aid comes to the market.  It is the most difficult device to design due to power drain, miniaturization and need to minimize feedback among other things.  So it may well have been a while since you’ve been offered new technology. 

A few months ago a new power aid came to the market.  We’ve already had a great deal of success with it.  The Naida V was designed specifically for listeners with severe to profound hearing loss giving more audibility for high frequency sounds than in the past.  It is the high frequency sounds that provide clarity to words. It also has a broad band booster that allows u to 5 dB increase in gain for the mid frequencies.  This helps with a natural sound quality without increased battery consumption.

The device comes in several different versions, even a smaller receiver in the ear canal option is available.  There are several color choices for matching hair, eye glass stems or skin tones.  All of the versions have a glass fiber reinforced material and 60% more robust than its predecessor.  It has an ip68 rating giving some the best protection against moisture and dust. 

Life sounds great!  Enjoy every moment!


Jane Kukula, AuD & Ashley Spisak, AuD
8897 Mentor Ave
Mentor, Ohio 44060
440-205-8848
Fax: 440-205-9818

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Are My Hearing Aids Compatible with My Cell phone?

Individuals wearing hearing instruments can struggle occasionally with hearing on their cellular phones.  Firstly, if you are purchasing a new mobile phone, you may want to investigate the phone model of interest for its Hearing Aid Compatibility (HAC) rating.  Most of the newer cellular phones are HAC. The Federal Communication Commission (FCC)  defines hearing aid compatibility based on two  parameters, the radio frequency (RF) and telecoil (T-coil) coupling (T). Hearing aid compliant mobile phones are marked and ranked with an “M” or “T” rating.  The “M” rating refers to the microphone modes or RF emissions and the “T” rating refers to the T-coil mode.  The minimal standard required by the FCC for a cellular phone to be considered hearing aid compatible is M3 and T3. If you are considering a mobile phone with a T rating, you will want to confirm with your audiologist that your hearing instruments have a T-coil.  Once you have confirmed the availability of a T-coil, you will also want to ensure that it is activated in your hearing instruments.  The activation of the T-coil in your hearing instruments will aid the “T” rated cellular phone’s ability to couple with your hearing instruments.  The higher the “T” rating, the more likely you will have a stronger T-coil connection with between the mobile phone and your hearing instruments.  The T-coil connection allows for increased volume in the hearing instruments while on your cellular phone without having to worry about “whistling” or feedback.  If you are curious about your T-coil instrument compatibility with your cellular phone, contact your audiologist today.  To make an appointment call 440-205-8848. 

Life sounds great!  Enjoy every moment!



Jane Kukula, AuD & Ashley Spisak, AuD
8897 Mentor Ave
Mentor, Ohio 44060
440-205-8848
Fax: 440-205-9818

Thursday, September 1, 2016

I read somewhere that one day there could be cure for hearing loss. How can they cure damage to the hearing nerves?

The Hearing Restoration Project‘s (HRP) research is showing great potential for the regeneration of damaged hearing nerves called hair cells.  This research may one day make hearing loss a thing of the past!

While working on another project one of the HRP researcher stumbled across an unexpected finding. While studying drugs that damage the hearing nerves, a scientist needed to permanently damage a chicken’s hair cells. They administered the drug and were successful, the haircells were lost.  Several days later almost all of the hair cells returned. They did not believe the results and repeated the experiment several times with the same results concluding that chickens can regenerate inner ear hair cells.  They continued this new research and we now know that all vertebrate animals except for one, mammals, including humans, spontaneously regenerate hair cells.

Next the researchers experimented with drugs to see if they could stimulate regrowth of hair cells.  They were successful with mice, partially restoring hearing following the administration of drug that inadvertently allowed the supporting cells in the inner ear to regenerate hair cells.  While there is much work still to do, there is a strong belief that one day this will lead to a cure for nerve hearing loss in humans. 


In the meantime, you should still to take good care of your hearing.  Eat right, exercise and have a baseline hearing evaluation.  

Life sounds great!  Enjoy every moment!



Jane Kukula, AuD & Ashley Spisak, AuD
8897 Mentor Ave
Mentor, Ohio 44060
440-205-8848
Fax: 440-205-9818









Thursday, August 25, 2016

I’ve lost my hearing aids 3 times this year, is there anything that can help me?

Hearing aids are an investment in your hearing health care.  When you invest your time and money into getting a pair of hearing instruments it can be devastating to lose them, especially if it happens more than once.  With traditional hearing aids, you need to put them in every morning and take them out every night.  You also need to remove them to change the zinc-air battery.  Obviously the more you need to remove and reinsert the hearing instrument, the more risk there may be in misplacing it or losing it.

Lyric, an extended wear hearing device, is a device that is placed deep in the ear canal by one of our audiologists and remains in the ear canal 24 hours a day for 7 days a week.  The lyric device is FDA approved to remain in the ear canal for up to 4 months.  Because there is less maintenance with the Lyric device and it remains in your ear canal for an extended period of time,  there is virtually no risk of misplacing the device or losing it.   

Life sounds great!  Enjoy every moment!




Jane Kukula, AuD & Ashley Spisak, AuD
8897 Mentor Ave
Mentor, Ohio 44060
440-205-8848
Fax: 440-205-9818

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Is there a good return on investment in hearing aids?

When it comes to an investment in the quality of your life, there’s more than one way to measure value. Diagnosing and treating hearing problems has a positive impact on every aspect of your life, personally, professionally and even financially.

New technology has revolutionized hearing aids. They can automatically adapt to different environments, reducing the interference from background noise. There are daily wear and extended wear instruments.  Many are virtually invisible, sitting discreetly and comfortably inside the ear canal. Best of all, many are wireless, so you can stream sound from smartphones, home entertainment systems and other electronics directly into your hearing aid(s) at volumes just right for you.

When it comes to the purchase of personal items that 
enhance your life, there’s more than one way to measure value. Here are six ways that investing in professionally fitted hearing aids could bring you a greater return on your investment than you ever imagined. 

Using hearing aids reduces the risk of income loss.  People with untreated hearing loss can lose as much as $30,000 in income a year.

There is a link between hearing loss and dementia, 
leading experts to believe that interventions, like hearing aids, could potentially delay dementia. 

People with even a mild hearing loss are nearly three times more likely to have a history of falling. The intensive listening effort demanded by unaddressed hearing loss may take cognitive resources away from what is needed for balance and gait.

People with hearing loss who use hearing aids, may feel more in
 control of their lives and less self-critical. One study found that the majority of people with mild to severe hearing loss felt better about themselves and life overall as a result of using hearing aids.

Hearing aids can help reduce the prominence of tinnitus by
 amplifying background sound.

Using hearing aids can help improve interpersonal relationships.  People with hearing loss reported that using hearing aids improved their relationships at home, their social lives and their ability to join in groups.

Addressing hearing loss really is a smart buying decision. Start with a hearing evaluation.  



Life sounds great!  Enjoy every moment!


Jane Kukula, AuD & Ashley Spisak, AuD
8897 Mentor Ave
Mentor, Ohio 44060
440-205-8848
Fax: 440-205-9818