Oticon has officially become the first hearing aid brand to earn an CES Innovation Award for their revolutionary new HearingFitness App. The new app has been released this year and was designed to work in conjunction with Oticon’s Opn hearing aids. The app aims to give users encouragement and advice on hearing better, hearing protection and healthier living. The HearingFitness app tracks hearing aid use and listening environments. The app also collates and interprets data collected from other wearable devices such as heart rate, sleep habits, exercise and other health markers. The HearingFitness app is the first application created by a hearing aid manufacturer that is focused on healthy hearing and living.

Why Track Hearing Aid Use?

Shockingly, there are some people who own hearing aids and do not wear them as often as they should. It can be especially tempting for first time hearing aid wearers to opt out of wearing their devices, as they can feel awkward in the beginning. It is important to remember that there is always an adjustment period to getting used to hearing aids, and the only way to overcome the adjustment period is to practice wearing your aids! The HearingFitness App keeps track of when and how often a user is wearing their aids, and gives gentle reminders along the way. The app also tracks listening environments, to help you understand when and where you are having the most difficulty hearing and understanding.

The Connection Between Your Hearing and Your Health

Did you know that researchers have found a strong correlation between untreated hearing loss and dementia? In fact, a recent study published in The Lancet concluded that hearing loss is amongst the highest risk factors for developing dementia from mid-life. The exact reason for the correlation typically falls into two different categories of thought. The first is that struggling to hear and understand causes your brain so much stress and energy that other areas of your brain begin to atrophy. The other school of thought revolves around the social isolation typically associated with hearing loss. (http://www.hearingreview.com/2017/11/oticon-hearingfitness-app-wins-2018-ces-innovation-award/).

For those with untreated hearing loss, social situations can begin to feel like more of a chore than a leisure activity. Many people with untreated hearing loss decide to opt out of family gatherings or work happy hours simply because the frustration of keeping up with conversations is so taxing. Because of this, many people with hearing loss experience social isolation. Social isolation is a key and important risk factor of dementia.

Oticon’s BrainHearing Technology

For a few decades, Oticon has focused on creating it’s trademarked BrainHearing technology. This technology uses a “Brain First” approach that is designed to make hearing easier on the brain and assist the brain in processing and understanding sounds. This BrainHearing technology allows hearing aid users to have the mental energy to engage at work, at home, and in their social lives. BrainHearing technology is also the workhorse behind the HearingFitness app. Combining actual user data and relevant feedback, the app will help people to optimize the use of their hearing aids. For more information on BrainHearing technology, visit the website here: https://www.oticon.com/solutions/brainhearing-technology

CES Innovation Awards

The CES Convention is considered the “Global Stage for Innovation”. Every year, the Consumer Technology Association, CES holds a convention where thousands of companies come together to unveil their exciting new advances in technology. While some advances, such as the HearingFitness app will be available for consumers immediately, others are showcasing technology that we may be able to get years down the road. Along with the HearingFitness app, this year’s CES Convention showcased tiny home robot companions from Honda 3E, augmented reality glasses, and crazy concept cars including facial recognition technologies and self-driving capabilities. (http://time.com/5100244/best-ces-2018-consumer-electronics-show/).

AZ Balance and Hearing Aids

If you think you may be noticing some of the early signs of hearing loss, it is important to schedule a hearing assessment with a specialist as soon as possible. Whether you’re in need of a hearing assessment or are simply curious about Oticon Opn hearing aids or the new HearingFitness app, feel free to reach out to our friendly team today.