So when Gunnar started having difficulty hearing at work and home, he did what he preaches to his clients: he attacked the problem and got a pair of hearing aids. Now as a hearing loss advocate, Gunnar offers the following tips to get your hearing in shape this fall.
* Be "present" with your hearing: Being present with your hearing means being aware of how you hear throughout the day. If your family members are complaining the TV is too loud, or if you're the one complaining that everyone else is mumbling, you may have a hearing problem that needs to be corrected.
* Get your hearing checked: At least once a year, you go to the doctor for a physical, or to get your eyesight checked. But when was the last time you got your hearing checked? Even if you're not having issues right now, just go and get a baseline to compare it to in the future.
* Preserve your current hearing: Noise-induced hearing loss is a problem that is completely preventable. If you work around a lot of noise, you need to use protection. If you go to loud concerts or enjoy firing up the leaf blower or lawnmower on the weekend, use protection. Remember, once you lose your hearing, it doesn't come back.
* Don't brush off tinnitus: If you have an annoying ringing or buzzing in your ears, especially when it's quiet, it may be tinnitus. Tinnitus and hearing loss often go hand-in-hand, so don't brush it off as a minor annoyance. Go see a hearing care professional and have it checked out.
Consider invisible hearing aids: If you need hearing aids but are worried people will judge you if they see you wearing them, know that invisible hearing aids such as the Phonak Lyric exist. They are 100 percent invisible and can stay in your ears for months at a time. A recent study even showed that Lyric relieves tinnitus faster than regular hearing aids, thanks to 24-hour amplification.