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Headphones and Hearing Loss

Hearing loss may be more common in women with osteoporosis, study finds

Poor bone health may hinder women’s hearing function long-term

A new study conducted by Brigham and Women’s Hospital explored the link between women with osteoporosis or low bone density (LBD) and an increased risk of hearing loss. According to their findings, women with osteoporosis or LBD were 40% more likely to experience moderate or severe hearing loss. 

“Adult onset hearing loss is typically irreversible; therefore, the [Conservation of Hearing Study] focuses on identifying potentially modifiable risk factors that may contribut...

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    Findings in fruit flies could bolster hearing loss treatment for older consumers

    Researchers are confident that an intervention could benefit those struggling with hearing loss

    Hearing loss affects countless consumers as they enter into older age, and previous studies have warned about how the condition can lead to premature death.

    Now, researchers from University College London have found that a gene in fruit flies could be the key to treating hearing loss for older consumers. Because of how similar fruit flies’ auditory processing is to humans, these advances could greatly benefit consumers with hearing loss. 

    “While many studies have been conducted into the hearing function of fruit flies, ours is the first to look at the mechanistic and molecular detail of their auditory life course,” said researcher Joerg Albert. 

    “Our twin discoveries that fruit flies experience age-related hearing loss and that their prior auditory health is controlled by a particular set of genes, is a significant breakthrough. The fact that these genes are conserved in humans will also help to focus future clinical research in humans and thereby accelerate the discovery of novel pharmacological or gene-therapeutic strategies.” 

    Treating hearing loss

    Fruit flies were chosen for the study because of how similar they are biologically to humans. During this study, the researchers found that fruit flies experience hearing loss as they age much in the same way that humans do. 

    In learning that, the next portion of the study involved the researchers retracing their steps. They sought to discover if there was any genetic indicator that could have prompted them to know that hearing loss was likely in the fruit flies. 

    They discovered that the fruit flies had homeostasis genes, which are often responsible for picking up on sound and overall sensitivity in the ear. Knowing that, the researchers then got to work altering the gene expression, by making the genes either more or less prominent in the fruit flies, to determine if that affected their hearing loss. 

    Ultimately, the researchers learned that manipulating the genes in this way was helpful in treating hearing loss for the fruit flies. Their findings from this study could help spur future treatment plans, and they could be the key to improving hearing loss treatment in the future. 

    “Based on our findings from [the fruit flies], we have already started a follow-up drug discovery project designed to fast-track novel treatments for human [age-related hearing loss],” Albert explained.

    Hearing loss affects countless consumers as they enter into older age, and previous studies have warned about how the condition can lead to premature death...
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    Happy Plugs recalls wireless headphones

    The headphones to overheat, posing a burn hazard

    Happy Plugs of New York is recalling about 9,400 Happy Plugs Bluetooth Wireless II Headphones sold in the U.S. and Canada.

    The micro-USB charging cable packaged with the headphones can cause the headphones to overheat, posing a burn hazard.

    The firm has received one report of the headphones overheating while plugged into their micro-USB charging cables. No injuries have been reported.

    This recall involves Happy Plugs Wireless II Bluetooth Headphones sold with an external micro-USB charging cable.

    The micro-USB charging cable is a black cable about 20 inches in length with a USB 2.0 port on one end and a micro-USB port on the other.

    The UPC is printed on the back of the product packaging in the lower right corner and the item number is printed on the bottom of the product packaging.

    The following headphones are included in this recall:

    Item #

    Color

    UPC

    Item # 7620 Happy Plugs Wireless II

    Black Gold

    811613031059

    Item # 7621 Happy Plugs Wireless II

    Black

    811613031066

    Item # 7622‎ Happy Plugs Wireless II

    White

    811613031073

    Item # 7623‎ Happy Plugs Wireless II

    Pink Gold

    811613031080

    Item # 7624‎ Happy Plugs Wireless II

    Matte Gold

    811613031097

    Item # 7625‎ Happy Plugs Wireless II

    Space Gray

    811613031103

    Item # 7626‎ Happy Plugs Wireless II

    White Marble

    811613031110‎

    Item # 7627‎ Happy Plugs Wireless II

    Botanica Exotica

    811613031127

    Item # 7629‎ Happy Plugs Wireless II

    Pink Marble

    811613032056

    Item # 7630‎ Happy Plugs Wireless II

    Leopard

    811613032063

    The headphones, manufactured in China, were sold at Macy’s stores nationwide and online at happyplugs.com from January 2019, through May 2019, for between $10 and $40.

    What to do

    Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled headphones and charging cable, and return them to the place of purchase or contact Happy Plugs to receive free replacement headphones and charging cable.

    Consumers may contact Happy Plugs at (800) 419-2988 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (PT) Monday through Friday, by email at customerservice@happyplugs.com and include “Recall” in the subject line, or online at https://happyplugs.com and click on “Support,” at the bottom of the page, then “Warranty and Returns,” then click on “Voluntary Recall and Exchange Program.”

    The direct link to the recall page can be found at https://happyplugs.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/360024787134-Voluntary-Recall-and-Exchange-Program.

    Happy Plugs of New York is recalling about 9,400 Happy Plugs Bluetooth Wireless II Headphones sold in the U.S. and Canada.The micro-USB charging cable...
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    Strategic Sports recalls Motovan Zox Sierra helmets

    The helmet shell may allow an object to penetrate through to the user's head

    Strategic Sports is recalling 1,956 Motovan Zox Sierra helmets, part number ST-560, in sizes XS, S, M, and L.

    The helmet shell may allow an object to penetrate through to the users head. As such, in an event of the crash, the helmet may not protect the occupant, increasing the risk of injury.

    What to do

    Strategic Sports has notified the distributors and known owners, and will provide refunds for all consumers returning their helmet.

    The recall began May 1, 2019.

    Owners may contact Moto customer service at (888) 449-7773 or by email at helmet.recall.info@gmail.com .

    Strategic Sports is recalling 1,956 Motovan Zox Sierra helmets, part number ST-560, in sizes XS, S, M, and L.The helmet shell may allow an object to pe...
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    Hearing loss linked as a sign of cognitive decline in old age

    However, a study shows that consumers could slow the effects of aging

    Not too many consumers want to think about getting older; however, a new study conducted by researchers from the University of California - San Diego may have people planning for the future.

    Researchers found that hearing loss is one of the first signs of advanced aging, and it could lead to cognitive difficulties in old age. However, according to the study, higher education can help with mild hearing loss.

    “We surmise that higher education may provide sufficient cognitive reserve to counter the effects of mild hearing loss, but not enough to overcome the effects of more severe hearing impairment,” said Linda K. McEvoy, PhD.

    Fighting hearing loss

    The researchers note that nearly 75 percent of adults over the age of 70 experience hearing loss, and they used this study to try to help combat any other aging issues that could come along with that.

    Using a longitudinal study, the researchers followed over 1,100 participants for about two and a half decades. The majority of the participants were women, and the average age was roughly 74 years old.

    None of the participants used a hearing aid when the study began, and they all had their hearing tested at the outset. Five additional examinations were conducted during the study period -- typically every four years.

    At the start of the study, the participants also completed several tests to analyze their cognitive functioning, and the researchers found that those with more severe hearing loss didn’t perform as well on these tests as those with more mild hearing loss.

    The tests revealed that less than 20 percent of participants had moderate to severe hearing loss, while nearly half of the group was classified as having mild hearing loss. However, the researchers found that participants who had finished college performed better cognitively over time than those who didn’t.

    “This was a somewhat unexpected finding,” said researcher Ali Alattar. “Others have postulated that cognitive deficits related to hearing impairment may arise from social isolation, but in our study, participants who had hearing impairment were as socially engaged as those without hearing loss.”

    The researchers hope these findings serve as a warning to healthcare professionals, and they encourage their patients to start protecting their hearing as early as possible.

    Other risks

    The researchers emphasize in their study that hearing loss cannot be reversed, and as their findings showed, patients can experience more than just impaired hearing.

    Another recent study found that hearing loss could be associated with premature death.

    The study found that those with spouses or partners were less likely to die early due to hearing loss; however, the researchers found that accidental deaths were a much larger risk for those who were on their own.

    “Old age greatly increases the risk for hearing loss,” said Dr. Vegard Skirbekk. “Therefore, as the population ages, we are seeing increasing numbers of people with hearing loss. At the same time, there are greater numbers of adults living without a partner -- putting people with hearing loss at an increased risk for death.”

    Not too many consumers want to think about getting older; however, a new study conducted by researchers from the University of California - San Diego may h...
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    Reading difficulties for children may indicate hearing impairment

    Researchers say hearing problems can be detrimental to the learning process

    If your child has reading difficulties, the problem may not lie in their comprehension – it might be due to a hearing problem.

    That’s the conclusion of a Coventry University study, which found that 25 percent of young participants who had reading difficulties also had mild to moderate hearing impairment. Report author Dr. Helen Breadmore says the finding indicates a greater need to screen young children for hearing problems.

    "Many children in school may have an undetected mild hearing loss, which makes it harder for them to access the curriculum,” she said. "Current hearing screening procedures are not picking up these children, and we would advise that children have their hearing tested in more detail and more often.

    Detrimenal to development

    The study compared children with dyslexia to a group of children with a history of repeated ear infections to see if both groups had similar difficulties with reading comprehension.

    The researchers asked nearly 200 participants to complete a series of tests to determine how they used word sounds and meanings in speech and literacy. After an 18-month period, all participants were tested again.

    The test results showed that 25 percent of participants with dyslexia suffered from some kind of hearing impairment, with symptoms mild enough to be missed by parents. Literacy problems were slightly more common in children with hearing infections, affecting 33 percent of these participants.

    Breadmore points out that these hearing problems can be detrimental in a classroom setting, and that it can negatively impact long-term development.

    "A mild-moderate hearing loss will make the perception of speech sounds difficult, particularly in a classroom environment with background noise and other distractions. Therefore, children who have suffered repeated ear infections and associated hearing problems have fluctuating access to different speech sounds precisely at the age when this information is crucial in the early stages of learning to read,” she said.

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that there is no single treatment or intervention for childhood hearing loss. However, it says that some options may include working with a support group or medical professional, or buying a hearing aid.

    If your child has reading difficulties, the problem may not lie in their comprehension – it might be due to a hearing problem.That’s the conclusion of...
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    Risky listening habits may lead to permanent hearing damage in young people

    A study shows that many young people are developing tinnitus due to listening to loud music

    The stigma of young people listening to loud music is one that stretches back for decades, but new research shows that it may be contributing to serious hearing problems.

    Canadian researcher Larry Roberts says that young people who listen to loud music are increasingly being affected by tinnitus, a condition signified by a constant ringing in the ears. The development of tinnitus signifies the potential for permanent hearing damage.

    “It’s a growing problem and I think it’s going to get worse. My personal view is that there is a major public health challenge coming down the road in terms of difficulties with hearing,” he said.

    Serious health risk

    Roberts and his fellow researchers came to this conclusion after conducting a study utilizing 170 students between the ages of 11 and 17. They found that nearly all of the participants engaged in some sort of risky listening habit – whether it was listening to loud music at parties or events or on some sort of personal device.

    Additionally, they found more than 25% of participants were already experiencing symptoms of tinnitus. Participants reported hearing a constant ringing or buzzing sound in their daily life, a condition that usually doesn’t affect someone under the age of 50.

    The researchers noted that having symptoms of tinnitus did not affect how well participants could hear; although this select group of students displayed symptoms of tinnitus, they were able to hear just as well as their peers. However, this same group was found to have a reduced tolerance for loud noises, a sign that Roberts says is indicative of hidden permanent hearing damage.

    Changing habits

    Roberts and his fellow researchers are confident that their research is able to provide a glimpse into what they consider to be a growing health problem for young people.

    Although prolonged exposure to loud music or noises can cause constant tinnitus, experiencing it for short stretches should act as a warning sign, he says. For example, young people who experience symptoms of tinnitus for a day or so after listening to loud music should be cautious about their listening habits moving forward.

    The full study has been published in the journal Scientific Reports

    The stigma of young people listening to loud music is one that stretches back for decades, but new research shows that it may be contributing to serious he...
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