Former B.C. news anchor Tony Parsons, right, has enjoyed a better quality of life since a hearing test showed he could benefit from hearing aids. He’ll tell his story during a free Better Hearing Expo workshop put on by Nexgen Hearing at the Guildford Golf and Country Club.

Better Hearing Expo shares what you might be missing

Upcoming free workshop in Guildford shines a light on hearing loss

Do you feel you’re missing important parts of conversations, or maybe you’re having a tough time hearing certain words?

Do you hear the question, “how are you feeling today” as “how are you stealing the hay?”

If so, it’s probably time to get your hearing checked out.

“The test is free and it’ll give you interesting and valuable information about where you’re at with your hearing,” says audiologist Dr. Ted Venema with Nexgen Hearing.

Trouble hearing in a crowd?

If you have difficulties distinguishing voices from general background noise or in a crowd, you’re not alone. That’s the No. 1 complaint from people suffering hearing loss, Dr. Venema says.

“Most people, as they get older – usually around age 65 – start to lose hearing in the high pitches. We call it ‘the trouble with treble,’” he adds. Mishearing consonants and high-pitched speech, like the letters ‘s’ and ‘f’ and the ‘ch’ and ‘th’ sounds, can make it difficult to discern words. That’s why people with hearing loss say, “You don’t have to raise your voice, I just can’t hear what you said.” Dishes of fishes? Kittens or mittens?

Your relationships can also be made difficult with hearing loss, as it necessarily involves another person. “It’s all about communication with others. And we know that sometimes people’s patience gets stretched thin when the other person isn’t hearing them.”

You can get a good sense of what you might be missing, why it’s happening and the options available to help you, at the Better Hearing Expo free workshop, happening Thursday, Nov. 15 at the Guildford Golf and Country Club between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.

Here’s what else you’ll learn at the Expo:

  • Dr. Venema will take you on a tour of the ear, giving you the basics of how they work and what causes hearing loss, as well as a brief description of some of the hearing aids available today
  • Former B.C. news anchor Tony Parsons will tell his own story of hearing loss and how hearing aids improved his quality of life
  • That 30 per cent of people 65 and older have significant hearing loss; it’s even higher for those age 70-plus
  • The specifics and cost of hearing aids is based on your individual needs and degree of hearing loss.

“People usually leave and say ‘wow, there’s a lot of information in there.’ You’ll leave with a way better understanding of hearing loss and hearing aids,” Dr. Venema says. He suggests bringing someone else to hear what’s being said, either a spouse or a family member.

*****

If you’d like to attend the free workshop, RSVP by calling 1-877-606-6671 or register online at BetterHearingExpo.ca. At the event you can enter to win a pair of Oticon Advanced Hearing Aids. A draw will also be made for a round of golf for two.

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