Have you ever slept with the window in your bedroom open and awoke to the beautiful sound of birds singing just as the sun comes up? So happens, there’s a name for all those birdsongs: the dawn chorus. Birds see the sunrise and, for some reason, decide it’s time to sing out their favorite melody. Each species has its own kind of song, and together, they sound like a symphony of nature.
But you may not hear the “dawn chorus” at all if you have neglected hearing loss. Which is a pity.
That’s especially true because it’s not just birdsong you might be missing out on. Summer is full of amazing sounds. And you may be missing those summer sounds because you have hearing loss that’s gone undiagnosed or simply ignored. But you can begin to enjoy all of those amazing summer sounds again with the help of a device like a hearing aid.
The sounds of summer
When you think about summer, you probably begin by visualizing the sun in a blue sky. And, a very, very hot sun (whew). But if you stay in your imagination a little longer, you’ll begin adding details that make this blue sky feel more like summer, the sounds that fill in the day. Some sounds you may think about:
- The babbling of a creek or the crashing of waves.
- The sound of birds singing out mating songs. (Love songs are not just enjoyed by humans.)
- Peepers and crickets chirping a symphony as the sun goes down.
- Bees buzzing around helping nature bloom by pollinating flowers.
- Something as basic as your grandchildren laughing, possibly as they run about the yard or as you catch a baseball game together.
These are only a few examples. There are a bunch of sounds happening. The experience and vibe of summer are significantly enhanced by these sounds. Plus, there is so much pleasure in these everyday summertime sounds themselves.
If these sounds of summer (or any sounds of summer) seem different to you these days, it’s likely because a noticeable amount of hearing loss has effectively snuck up on you. If you have noticed your hearing loss then you should get some help with it.
Your summer can be more enjoyable with hearing aids
For most people, hearing aids are really about strengthening relationships. Communication is key. They make it easier to talk to others, to hear what’s going on around you, and to enjoy the sounds that you hear. And that’s especially significant at those summer barbecues, for instance.
Modern hearing aids have some fantastic technology that will help you savor those summer sounds. For example, most modern hearing aids provide:
- Bluetooth Connectivity: Boating on the lake and want to listen to some music? Just sync the boat’s radio to your hearing aids via Bluetooth.
- Smartphone compatibility: You can connect your hearing aids to your cellphone and begin enjoying all kinds of features. Many phones will now allow you to download apps that help you control the settings on your hearing aids, so you can fine-tune for birdsong or grandchildren’s laughter depending on what you want to hear at that moment.
- Automatic programming: Contemporary hearing aids can automatically adjust to new environments or times of day, depending on how they’re programmed. This function makes them more effective and simpler to use.
- Rechargeability: Your battery will stay charged all day after charging when you are sleeping at night. 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 hassle free.
- Noise reduction: You’ll want to get hearing aids that can sort through specific sounds (your ears once did this) so you can appreciate those crashing waves without having the traffic behind you amplified too. Modern hearing aids have substantial noise reduction features, so you can hear what you actually want to hear.
- Machine learning: Fancy algorithms (called machine learning) can help your hearing aids adapt to what you need, even before you know you need it. This is especially handy when filtering sounds or in a noisy environment.
We can help you learn how your specific hearing needs can be met by your hearing aids (for example, you can ask whether you can wear them while you’re swimming or hiking up a mountain, that kind of thing). Hearing aids and water-sports don’t always play nice together. But you will have a deeper overall summer experience with your hearing aids.
You’ll also want to ask us some basic questions about your hearing aid models. For example, you should ask, can hot weather affect my hearing aids? Also, does humidity have any impact on my hearing aid and how can I protect it? Depending on the model of hearing aid, the answer to these questions will vary.
Maybe avoid these sounds
As much as you love the sound of the dawn chorus, there are a few other summer sounds that could actually be harmful to your hearing, so you’ll probably want to steer clear of them. These noisy sounds are a real hazard! And they’re harmful to everyone’s ears, not just those who have pre-existing hearing loss. Some of those sounds include:
- Boat engines: Be cautious of how close you get and how long you spend around these engines because they are very loud. When you’re fishing, shut the engine off. Or, even better, pop in some earplugs for the duration of your boat trip.
- Live music: Outdoor concerts are a fun part of summer, but they can be harmful to your hearing. So you may want to use some caution and be picky about which shows you attend and wear earplugs.
- Fireworks: The dogs are on to something. Your hearing can definitely be harmed by fireworks. Likewise, being close to home-launched fireworks can also be harmful to your ears (and limbs). It’s best for your hearing to keep away from fireworks completely.
This list is not exhaustive. Summer activities for people with hearing loss might not include quite as many of those fireworks and loud noise situations.
Having said that, you might not be able to, or even want to, avoid all loud noises during the summer. So what can you do? Using ear protection is the best strategy. Putting in a set of earplugs before you see any live music show can minimize a lot of the damage, for instance. But it’s essential that the hearing protection you chooses is effective.
Enjoy the sounds of summer
If you are dealing with hearing loss, the sounds of summer could feel like they’re getting further and further away (even as the heat of summer gets more and more oppressive). Which means, a lot of the joy of the season could get lost.
Getting the most out of your summer then, may mean making a pit stop with us. We will be able to determine whether your hearing is failing or not, and what type of hearing aid will be best for your situation.
So if you want to appreciate the dawn chorus, that’s where you should start. Because birdsongs are just the beginning of those amazing summer sounds.
Get a hearing tune-up this summer. Call us for a hearing exam and find out if hearing aids are the right choice for you.