Healthy Hearing, Healthy Life - Rancho La Puerta
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Healthy Hearing, Healthy Life

Week of March 9, 2024

Hearing Loss and the Brain
Research over the last several years has demonstrated a strong correlation between hearing loss and cognition. In fact, the rate of cognitive decline is twice as fast in people with mild hearing loss compared to those with normal hearing. We will answer your questions about hearing loss, talk about prevailing theories about why hearing loss seems to impact cognition and give you tips regarding what you can do about it.

What’s the Buzzzzzz About Tinnitus?|
People describe tinnitus as a ringing sound, a buzz, “crickets”….we even have one patient who tells us her tinnitus sounds like Christmas carols! Too many people have been told there is nothing that can be done or to just “get used to it.” We disagree! We’ll talk about the causes of tinnitus and ways you can successfully manage those annoying sounds in your ears.

I’m Confused!  What’s the Best Hearing Aid?
Well, we would like to reframe that question. The best question is, “What’s the best hearing aid for me?” There are many hearing aid options out there and it is the job or your hearing health professional to help you find the right match for your needs.  Hearing aids are not a one-size-fits all and you don’t have to figure it out on your own. We’ll talk about some of the “cool new” hearing aid technologies available now.  But most important, we will help you know the right questions to ask so you can get the best hearing help possible where you live.

Hearing the Call at Home and Abroad
We call them “hearing smiles” and we have had the great fortune to travel around the world to underserved countries providing audiologic care. From the 80-year-old woman in Mozambique who broke into dance when we fit her husband with hearing aids to the woman in Guatemala who burst into tears of joy when she heard a motorcycle drive by the clinic (ask us why!)…their smiles have changed us. We have shared in the joy of people living in poverty whose lives were transformed after receiving the gift of hearing. Their stories will warm your heart.

Jane Baxter, Au.D. (left)  and Deborah Clark, Au.D. are co-owners of Pacific Hearing Service, a private audiology practice in the San Francisco Bay Area. They are also co-founders of Pacific Hearing Connection, a nonprofit audiology clinic with the mission of serving low-income hearing-impaired people in the Bay Area. In addition to their local nonprofit work, they are charter members of Entheos Audiology Cooperative and travel to underserved places around the world such as Guatemala, Jordan and Africa with a team of audiologists providing care to hearing impaired people. Together they were awarded the Leo Doerfler award by the Academy of Doctors of Audiology for outstanding service in their community throughout their careers.

 Dr. Baxter began her career educating deaf children before she decided to go back to school and become an audiologist. She worked in clinical audiology at Stanford University prior to joining Pacific Hearing Service. Dr. Clark also has a background in academics having worked at Vanderbilt University and The University of Washington before joining Dr. Baxter in private practice. They are proud to say their clinic has been serving people in the Bay Area for 45 years and has a reputation for providing gold-standard care.