RETIREMENT AND (HEARING) HEALTHCARE

If you plan to retire soon, it’s time to think about expenses and how everything will be covered. Healthcare costs, including hearing healthcare, should be factored in. Estimates from HealthView Insights show that an American couple retiring this year can expect just over $400,000 in healthcare costs over the course of retirement, with about 4% of that being out of pocket (and most of it covered by insurance or Medicare).

These numbers are estimates and averages, so actual expenses can vary with gender, age and location. What we can be sure of is that medical expenses will probably make up a significant amount of your total budget. Housing or mortgage costs will probably be the biggest expense, with healthcare costs coming in second. If you are using Medicare, there are a lot of out-of-pocket expenses that are not covered, including hearing aids.

Being Prepared Before You Retire

There are a few things you can do to prepare and save for retirement medical expenses while you are still working. For example, if you have a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) set up while you are still working, before-tax dollars can be used on all of your medical expenses for that year, and you can buy things that aren’t going to be covered when you are retired (like those hearing aids!). Sometimes employers contribute to FSA accounts as well, beefing up the total amount of money you have to spend on such medical expenses, and saving you out-of-pocket costs.

Even if you are not working, make things easier by portioning out money in a separate account for medical expenses so you have easy access when you need it. HealthView has estimated that the average American couple at age 65 will incur about $950 in medical expenses per month, and this number will increase with age.

Keep Yourself Healthy!

It goes without saying the better your health is, the less medical expenses you should expect to pay. Adopting healthy habits is a good rule of preventative care at any age, but can significantly reduce costs during retirement.

Not smoking, losing weight, eating right and exercising regularly are all obvious ways to improve overall health, and they also improve hearing health and reduce the risk of hearing damage.

Get moving! Blood circulation increases with regular movement, even if it’s just a walk around the block once or twice per day. Every organ in your body benefits from better blood circulation, including your ears! The delicate hair cells in your inner ear, which help to translate sound for your brain, are dependent on proper circulation for healthy function–so get that heart pumping!

We all look forward to retirement to enjoy more activities that we love–and some of those are noisy! Be sure to wear adequate hearing protection, such as ear plugs, when you are in a noisy environment, like at a concert, fireworks or in the proximity of machinery like an electric saw or lawnmower.

Hearing Health is Important!

Many Americans over 65 suffer from some degree of hearing loss, which can typically be treated easily with hearing aids. Regular screenings are key to measuring the severity of any existing hearing loss and stopping it in its tracks.

Not treating hearing loss can cost you much more than catching it early and doing something about it. If left untreated, hearing loss can worsen, causing bigger problems down the road such as dementia, anxiety and depression.

There’s good news! An annual hearing screening is painless and easy, and can save you a lot of trouble down the road!

Make a commitment today to improve your overall health by cleaning up your diet and being more active every day.

Here at California Hearing Center we are committed to your hearing health. Call us today to set up an appointment for a hearing screening.

THE CONNECTION BETWEEN DIABETES AND HEARING HEALTH

Hearing loss has many causes: loud noise, infection, and various diseases. One lesser-known disease that can cause hearing loss is diabetes.

Diabetes is becoming more and more common around the world, and it is becoming more recognized as a cause of hearing loss. One study found some degree of hearing loss in 21 percent of 399 study participants with diabetes, as opposed to 9 percent in the adults without diabetes.

If you have pre-diabetes, there is cause for concern as well: the study found that people who were pre-diabetic had a 30 percent greater likelihood of developing hearing loss than the adults with normal blood sugar levels.

It is believed that higher blood sugar levels may damage blood vessels and nerves in the inner ear, similar to the way they damage kidneys and eyes.

With 30 million diabetics in the U.S. alone, this is cause for great concern. Diabetes (and pre-diabetes) can result in a host of health issues, hearing loss only one among them.

What Can I Do?

According to research, most American adults have Type 2 (adult-onset) diabetes, which can be prevented and sometimes reversed. The causes of adult-onset diabetes are things that by and large are easily preventable: a sedentary lifestyle, obesity and poor diet.

Start taking steps today to improve your overall health: exercise more (just walk around the block a couple times!), eat whole, unprocessed food and cut down on sugar. Not only will you feel better, but you may save your hearing in the process, along with your eyes, kidneys, heart, liver…

Also be sure to have your hearing checked once per year to monitor your hearing health. Hearing damage occurs slowly and may not be noticed until it has progressed to an irreversible level. If you are consistently checking your hearing, you may be alerted to a problem before you even notice it.

Make a commitment today to improve your overall health by cleaning up your diet and being more active every day.

Here at California Hearing Center we are committed to your hearing health. Call us today to set up an appointment for a hearing screening.

THIS YEAR MAKE A RESOLUTION THAT IS EASY TO KEEP

What is your New Year’s Resolution? If you’re like most people, it probably has something to do with  generally being healthier: eating better, exercising more, or losing weight. Did you know that overall health also plays a vital role in hearing health?

Since many resolutions don’t survive the month of January, we think it’s important to take steps to ensure our health, and our hearing health, early in the year. So why not make a quick call to California Hearing Center to schedule your yearly hearing exam? This one little move will ensure you have a hearing-healthy 2018 by heading off any potential hearing issues that may be developing.

People overwhelmingly think of health as something they could improve. Following closely to health is finances, relationships, hobbies, and career. Luckily preventing and treating hearing loss can impact all of these areas of your life. People who treat hearing loss by wearing hearing devices often make more money and report higher quality of life than those with untreated hearing loss.

A Resolution with Staying Power

When asked, people generally have little confidence that they will keep the New Years Resolutions they make. So why not start off 2018 on the right foot by making and keeping a resolution with staying power: preventing and treating hearing loss.

Because changes in hearing can sometimes portend other serious issues, such as heart disease and diabetes, and because hearing loss also increases risk of Alzheimer’s disease, social isolation, anxiety and depression, it is definitely worth being pro-active about your hearing health, even if you think everything is fine.

Happy New Year!

In 2018, starting with New Year’s Eve, make sure to protect your hearing when in noisy environments, like fireworks shows, concerts, or loud parties. Cheap earplugs from the drug store can protect your hearing now and in the future–carry a pair whenever you go out to ensure you are always protected.

Here at California Hearing Center we are committed to your hearing health. Call us today to set up an appointment for a hearing screening.