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Athletes and Hearing Loss

Peter Lucier, HIS

Staying active is one of the best gifts you can give yourself as an active lifestyle keeps your body and your brain feeling strong and alive. Hearing loss can begin at any age from birth, as an adolescent or into your golden years. While hearing loss is more common as people grow old, affecting 1 in 3 people over the age of 65, hearing loss can also be escalated by exposure to loud noise, infection, and head trauma.

For many athletes, impact to the head is a common risk of many professional sports. However, many professional athletes continue to overcome the odds to excel in their field despite their disability. Below we explore the best hearing aids to stay active and engaged in the sports and activities that bring you joy.

Hearing aids for an active lifestyle

If you value an active lifestyle then it is important to understand that all hearing aids are not created equally. Some hearing aids will perform better for a life “on-the-go”, equipped with features that protect against sweat and moisture or noise canceling features.  Any athlete understands the importance of being alert when they are playing. You need to be able to hear your teammates, opponents, the coach, or the referee. Being able to hear clearly helps you understand your surroundings and even helps to keep your balance.

Protection against debris and moisture

Every hearing aid is rated with an International Protection (IP) code, which lets you know how durable they are against moisture and dirt. The first two digits of the IP code describe the hearing aids resistance to dust on a scale of 0 to 6 while the second two numbers describe the level of water resistance on a scale of 0 to 9. Depending on what sports you like to play will dictate the importance of a higher IP number. For instance, if you run and sweat and play outside in the elements, water and dust resistance should be a huge priority when choosing your hearing aids.

Battery power

One of the worst things that can happen during a competition, is that your hearing aids run out of power. The days of having to carry spare batteries with you are soon over. The newest hearing aid models come equipped with rechargeable batteries. If you are religious about making sure that your hearing aids charge overnight you won’t have to worry about running out of power while you are out and about or in the middle of a game.

Hands free adjustments

In the middle of a big game, the last thing you want to focus on is the level or mode of your hearing aid. Many hearing aids today are compatible with Smartphone apps that make it easier to adjust your hearing aids without having to take them out in the field. Otherwise the risk of damaging your hearing aids can be too high. Hands free adjustments will help you to focus on the game rather than how well your hearing aids are performing.

Noise cancelling features

With advances in hearing aid technology, many hearing aids offer a more natural sound quality, allowing you to prioritize more of what you want to hear, while canceling out distracting noise. If you are a professional athlete then you will have to tune out the sounds of roaring crowds to focus on the game. If you are outside in the elements you want to be able to block out the sound of high winds or passing cars so you can hear your best during almost any sport.

Hearing and playing your best

If you are passionate about what you do, you don’t have to let hearing loss stop you. While hearing aids can’t make your hearing return to its original ability, they can certainly help you be alert during games and tournaments, giving you as much of a chance as anyone else to compete and secede in the field.

There are so many success stories of professional athletes that have overcome the odds and serve as an example of the importance of continuing to work for what gives us inspiration and joy, no matter the odds.

To find out what features and accessories are available to help you succeed at the activities you love, contact us today. We can assess your hearing and help you find the best hearing aids for you and your lifestyle.

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