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You may need hearing aids and not even know it!

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You may need hearing aids and not even know it!

If you do these 6 things you may need to visit an Audiologist!

If you love going to concerts, use a Bluetooth earpiece, or wear earbuds you may be putting your health at risk and not even know it! We live in a world where noise is a constant; honestly, we do not even realize how loud things are. Construction sites, firing ranges, going on a bird hunt, and even that awesome rock concert may not be what is best for your ears.

Now, I love loud live music and I always have. I absolutely turn the radio up loud…and the television, and I ask people to speak up when I cannot hear them. Yes, I also wear hearing aids in both ears due to hearing loss. Now, being hearing impaired has taught me to cope with my hearing loss. Many people cope with hearing loss in our society and do not even recognize what they are doing.

There are things that people do that may be signs they need to go get their hearing checked out by an Audiologist with a specific hearing test that can determine if their hearing loss is significant enough to need a hearing aid.

This list is not complete by any means, nor it is a medical diagnosis. However, if you or someone you know are using these as coping techniques you may want to pursue going to the Audiologist:

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1. People complain that you have things turned up too loud.

You are used to hearing people say, “Can you turn that down please?”

You are constantly turning up the volume on the radio, television, or your laptop. Or, you ask others to turn up the volume. This may sound obvious, but many simply do not see this as a sign of hearing loss.

2. Asking people to repeat what they say.

You commonly use the phrase, “What did you say?” Or, “Huh?”

That’s right, those with middle tone loss (like I have) tend to have difficulty hearing what an average adult says to them even at close range sometimes. Now, I did say an adult; children usually have higher pitched voices so you may not have as much difficulty hearing them.

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3. Changing rooms during a conversation.

You tend to say things like, “Wait a minute, I will be right there.” Or, “I can’t hear you, can you come in here please?”

Now, this may sound a bit strange but stay with me here. Usually those with hearing loss need to be in the same room with the person(s) they are talking to. Even yelling from one room to the next often poses problems for them. They will either go into the room with the person who is talking, or ask them to come into the room where they are.

4. Not hearing what others are saying correctly.

Think: do you often here the phrase, “I didn’t say that!”

Many times, those with hearing loss hear a few phonetic sounds of the word and their brains may piece the rest of the word together. If you tend to hear words that were never said or have misinterpreted words regularly, this is a sign you need not ignore.

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5. Sitting in one specific area in large meeting places.

For example, I tend to want to sit in the front left of any meeting I am in: in a staff meeting at work, in church, or when I am in a class. I do not sit there out of habit. I sit there because I hear better when I am in that specific location. People who have hearing loss usually want to sit with their stronger ear towards the speaker; thus they regularly want to sit in the same location.

6. You watch people’s mouths.

You don’t do this because you like the color of their lipstick, you watch their mouths to read their lips. Yes, even people with a mild hearing loss will do this, so that they “hear” what the person is saying correctly. Usually, your eyes can help your brain understand what the person is saying by reading their lips, so that your brain does not make up the syllables it did not hear.

Again, this list is really not exhaustive, but it is a list of things to consider. If you really do have the above issues, you may want to consider visiting an Audiologist. Now, I have had hearing aids since I was a child, so I am quite used to all of the above accommodations. People even with a mild hearing loss tend to cope naturally.

What you do not want to do is ignore these signs. Your coping strategies will not solve your hearing loss.

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For more information on symptoms of hearing loss visit this page.

Featured photo credit: Man with hearing aid/Bundesinnung Hörgeräteakustiker via flickr.com

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Last Updated on January 27, 2022

5 Reasons Why Food is the Best Way to Understand a Culture

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5 Reasons Why Food is the Best Way to Understand a Culture

Food plays an integral role in our lives and rightfully so: the food we eat is intricately intertwined with our culture. You can learn a lot about a particular culture by exploring their food. In fact, it may be difficult to fully define a culture without a nod to their cuisine.

“Tell me what you eat, and I’ll tell you who you are.” – Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin (1825).

Don’t believe me? Here’s why food is the best way to understand a culture:

Food is a universal necessity.

It doesn’t matter where in the world you’re from – you have to eat. And your societal culture most likely evolved from that very need, the need to eat. Once they ventured beyond hunting and gathering, many early civilizations organized themselves in ways that facilitated food distribution and production. That also meant that the animals, land and resources you were near dictated not only what you’d consume, but how you’d prepare and cook it. The establishment of the spice trade and the merchant silk road are two example of the great lengths many took to obtain desirable ingredients.

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Food preservation techniques are unique to climates and lifestyle.

Ever wonder why the process to preserve meat is so different around the world? It has to do with local resources, needs, and climates. In Morocco, Khlea is a dish composed of dried beef preserved in spices and then packed in animal fat. When preserved correctly, it’s still good for two years when stored at room temperature. That makes a lot of sense in Morocco, where the country historically has had a strong nomadic population, desert landscape, and extremely warm, dry temperatures.

Staples of a local cuisines illustrate historical eating patterns.

Some societies have cuisines that are entirely based on meat, and others are almost entirely plant-based. Some have seasonal variety and their cuisines change accordingly during different parts of the year. India’s cuisine is extremely varied from region to region, with meat and wheat heavy dishes in the far north, to spectacular fish delicacies in the east, to rice-based vegetarian diets in the south, and many more variations in between.

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The western part of India is home to a group of strict vegetarians: they not only avoid flesh and eggs, but even certain strong aromatics like garlic, or root vegetables like carrots and potatoes. Dishes like Papri Chat, featuring vegetable based chutneys mixed with yoghurt, herbs and spices are popular.

Components of popular dishes can reveal cultural secrets.

This is probably the most intriguing part of studying a specific cuisine. Certain regions of the world have certain ingredients easily available to them. Most people know that common foods such as corn, tomatoes, chili peppers, and chocolate are native to the Americas, or “New World”. Many of today’s chefs consider themselves to be extremely modern when fusing cuisines, but cultural lines blended long ago when it comes to purity of ingredients.

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Black pepper originated in Asia but became, and still remains, a critical part of European cuisine. The Belgians are some of the finest chocolatiers, despite it not being native to the old world. And perhaps one of the most interesting result from the blending of two cuisines is Chicken Tikka Masala; it resembles an Indian Mughali dish, but was actually invented by the British!

Food tourism – it’s a whole new way to travel.

Some people have taken the intergation of food and culture to a new level. No trip they take is complete with out a well-researched meal plan, that dictates not only the time of year for their visit, but also how they will experience a new culture.

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So, a food tourist won’t just focus on having a pint at Oktoberfest, but will be interested in learning the German beer making process, and possibly how they can make their own fresh brew. Food tourists visit many of the popular mainstays for traditional tourism, like New York City, San Francisco, London, or Paris, but many locations that they frequent, such as Armenia or Laos, may be off the beaten path for most travelers. And since their interest in food is more than meal deep, they have the chance to learn local preparation techniques that can shed insight into a whole other aspect of a particular region’s culture.

Featured photo credit: Young Shih via unsplash.com

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