Living With Hearing Loss is Presenting At AAA 2018

I am excited to be presenting at the American Academy of Audiology’s annual convention in Nashville being held April 18-21, 2018. Formerly know as Audiology Now, the conference was rebranded as AAA 2018 this year, the Academy’s 30th anniversary.

AAA 2018 is slated to be the world’s largest gathering of audiologists. Here they attend educational sessions to keep their practices current, explore the latest in new hearing technology at the exhibit hall and visit with colleagues from around the world. I am thrilled to be representing the patient’s perspective to this auspicious group.


My talk is entitled “How Can You Help Your Patients Hear Their Best?” In it, I will share my hearing loss story and offer advice for how audiologists can best interact with us, their patients with hearing loss. Here is the blurb from the conference brochure.

MM303 – How Can You Help Your Patients Hear Their Best?

Friday, April 20
10:21 AM – 10:27 AM
Location: 201AB

Shari Eberts, MBA: Founder,

People with hearing loss never forget their first visit to an audiologist’s office. They experience high hopes alongside great worry. That first visit is instrumental in how they will view and treat their hearing loss for many years to come. In this session, you will learn the things patients want from audiologists during that first visit and throughout their care. Your attitude and actions are instrumental in helping your patients hear their best.

Learning Objective: Describe tangible ways to enhance your relationships with your patients to improve hearing outcomes.

Will you be at AAA 2018? If so, stop by my session: MM303 How Can You Help Your Patients Hear Their Best? I would love to meet you!

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Family Kayaking, aka Screaming “What” Into The Wind

The ocean waves crashed noisily around me. The wind was buzzing in my ears and whistling in my hearing aids. The sun was shining and the birds were flying overhead, occasionally squawking before plunging into the sea to catch a fish. I was seated in the back of a two person kayak — and I couldn’t hear a thing. My son was in front of me, my husband and daughter in a second kayak. We spent most of the trip yelling “What?” into the wind. It was a perfect storm of frustration and hearing loss.

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When Disability Is A Design Opportunity

The Cooper Hewitt museum in New York City is currently running a fascinating exhibition entitled Access+Ability. The exhibit features new and innovative products that help people with disabilities experience their world more effectively through design. Some of the products are in the marketplace today, while others are in the prototype stage. All are inspiring in their use of design to solve every day problems for people with a variety of accessibility issues, including more “traditional” disabilities like mobility challenges, blindness and deafness, but also other obstacles like dementia, blood clots, and tremors.

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The Joys of Noise-Cancelling Headphones

I am proud to share my hearing loss story and tips on Hearing Tracker

I love to travel, attend concerts, and live sporting events, but as my hearing loss has worsened, I have become more sensitive to loud sounds. More frequently, the aftermath of a plane flight or visit to a stadium was a long bout of tinnitus and sometimes, even vertigo. It just wasn’t worth it, until I discovered noise-cancelling headphones. I wear them almost everywhere now — on airplanes, at the movies and of course at any concert or loud stadium. Not only do they protect my hearing in the moment, they prevent days of pain and annoyance afterwards.

Living With Hearing Loss | A Hearing Loss Blog

I first started using noise-cancelling headphones on plane rides. The white noise of an airplane engine can be easy to ignore, but one day I decided to measure it on my iPhone decibel reader. I was amazed to see how loud it actually is! Noise levels ranged from 80 decibels up to 90 decibels on the plane, an unsafe listening level. The rule of thumb is that prolonged exposure to any noise at or above 85 decibels can cause gradual hearing loss, and this hearing loss is permanent.

After that flight, I purchased a high quality pair of noise-cancelling headphones and now wear them every time I travel on an airplane. I also don them on long bus and train rides to block out the rhythmic sounds of the world passing by. Rhythmic sounds, even if they are not that loud, can sometimes trigger my tinnitus.

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I Love My New Captioned Phone

Like most people with hearing loss, I regularly have trouble hearing on the phone. I make religious use of my amplified headset and the volume control on my speakerphone, but sometimes, it is not enough. It can be embarrassing to keep asking someone to repeat themselves, and dangerous if important information is being conveyed. I remember one phone call with an editor where I kept repeating what I thought I had heard to keep the conversation moving forward. It was very stressful and difficult for both of us.

After that call, I decided to try a captioned phone to see what benefits it would bring. It has only been a few weeks, but I am very pleased with it.

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