Getting your hearing checked before you’re struggling can prevent greater hearing loss

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Here’s how not to lose your sense of hearing.

By Patricia Nugent

From your last vacation, which do you remember more vividly: the beauty of the beach, or the roar of the ocean?

Hearing doesn’t always receive the same level of engagement as the other four senses, so heading into May, which is Better Hearing and Speech Month, we sat down with audiologist Dr. Danielle Hoenig for some insights into this often-neglected sense.

Along with Dr. Jane Kukula, she helps people attain their best possible level of hearing at Advanced Audiology Concepts The Hearing Center in Mentor.

“Prevention and early detection are integral to treating hearing loss,” says Dr. Danielle. “We recommend people don’t put off getting their hearing checked until they are really struggling with it. If something was wrong with your vision, you wouldn’t put off going to the eye doctor.”

She reports that research shows a significant segment of the population, those with diabetes, heart disease or kidney disease, are at a higher risk for developing hearing loss. And living with impaired hearing has been linked to a host of cognitive decline issues, such as depression and dementia.

How Loud is Too Loud?
To protect your hearing at dangerously high-decibel events like live concerts, she recommends wearing protection and staying away from the speakers.

Dr. Danielle also cautions people using headphones and ear buds to pay attention to the volume.

“A good rule of thumb is, if others around you can hear what you’re playing, it’s too loud,” she says. “You should turn it down and think about getting your hearing tested if it doesn’t seem too loud to you.”

For the average person, since age-related hearing loss can start as early as your 40s, the doctors recommend having a baseline evaluation around age 40.

“With advancements in technology, such as more cosmetic options and improvements in hearing in background noise, patients are more open to wearing hearing aids at a younger age,” she says.

Advanced Audiology Concepts is located at 8897 Mentor Avenue in Mentor. Call the office to set up an audiogram to see how healthy your hearing is, 440-205-8848, or visit for more information.