HEAR THIS! One company is leading the way in improving audio access for the hearing impaired

April 08, 2021

[Originally published in FeedMagazine.tv – Spring 2021]

You really want to hear that YouTube content – the life hack that’s going to change everything. But it was recorded badly, the publisher hasn’t mixed it well, and you just can’t hear exactly what your favourite guru is saying. You turn up your iPhone, but Apple has designed the loudness settings to keep you from shattering your eardrums. Then, of course, there are no video subtitles. So, you watch it at your desktop computer with the BIG SPEAKERS and see how that goes.

It’s really irritating when that happens. But if you’re hard of hearing, this is what a regular day on the internet can be like. Fortunately, there are hearing assistive devices making content more accessible.

BeHear ACCESS hearing amplifier
BeHear ACCESS personal hearing amplifier

Audio communications company, Alango Technologies, is headquartered in Haifa, Israel, and has turned its focus to technologies improving access for the hearing impaired. The company’s BeHear ACCESS assistive hearing device was an honouree at the 2020 CES Innovation Awards. Their philosophy is that hearing impairment is a more universal phenomenon than most people readily admit, and use of hearing assistive technology should be as common as getting glasses.

Accessing audio isn’t entirely a matter of loudness or frequency enhancement. Sometimes the speed of speech makes it difficult to understand for people with age-related hearing loss, but also those with cognitive disabilities or language barriers. Even those who need extra time to write down information as they hear it.

One of Alango’s technologies, EasyListen, slows down incoming speech in real time.

“People with a hearing disability have difficulties listening to fast talkers and, eventually, at some age, all talkers seem fast,” explains Alango founder and CEO, Dr Alexander Goldin. “We can slow down speech and make it more intelligible. It’s a unique technology you cannot find today, even in expensive hearing aids.” EasyListen was designed for older people, who may have dexterity problems, with large buttons and simple controls.

The company’s EasyWatch technology allows viewers to understand fast talkers on TV, movies and streaming video by dynamically and selectively slowing down both the audio and video streams.

“One problem with hearing loss is that many people are not aware of having it,” says Goldin. “It takes, on average, seven years from the onset of the problem to the point where people become aware. And another three years when they start actually looking for help.”

To shorten this time, Alango has developed a hearing assessment kiosk, which can be put in waiting rooms or pharmacies to assess hearing – then provide customised audio feedback to give people an experience of what they are missing.

“Becoming aware of the problem is not enough to look for help. You need to know what you are missing. Hearing isn’t like vision – I can immediately understand that I can’t read a book or see a traffic sign. But if I don’t hear birds outside, they simply don’t exist for me. At our kiosk, we play video clips and allow people to switch the hearing amplification on and off.”

Getting the right solution in compensating for hearing loss isn’t just a matter of increasing loudness. Most gradual hearing loss is selective along specific frequencies. Increasing loudness brings up other frequencies, which may allow a person to fill in the gaps of what they are not hearing, but those missing frequencies are still likely to remain vacant. Alango uses a technology called multi-channel dynamic range processing. This takes into account all parts of the auditory system and tries to make up for it using the frequencies a person is still able to hear.

“Hearing loss cannot be compensated for completely. But we’re trying to get as close as possible.”

Alango’s technologies are designed for TVs and technologies people use every day. They have begun conversations with tech manufacturers about how to best integrate these new assistive features more widely.

Given the capabilities of most modern devices, we may eventually see smart devices taking into account that the ability to access video and audio is less consistent than we assume. A device integrated with its own hearing assessments – and automatic compensation for it – could be just around the corner.

PEOPLE WITH A HEARING DISABILITY HAVE DIFFICULTIES LISTENING TO FAST TALKERS AND, EVENTUALLY, AT SOME AGE, ALL TALKERS SEEM FAST

View the original article at https://online.bright-publishing.com/view/528237499/68/

From the iPhone to BeHear: Why, as an audiologist, I decided to also become an engineer

April 07, 2021


When the first iPhone was released, back in 2007, I envisioned a revolution in my field of audiology. If it would be possible to connect between the mobile phone and hearing aids, this could empower hearing aid users in a completely new way – instead of being completely dependent on the audiologist to tune their device, users could access some of the technological features and control their own hearing definitions.

The smartphone industry began to flourish, and it was obvious to me that, as a result, hearing rehabilitation and the hearing aid industry would forever change.

behear Iphone hearing
Suhail Habib Allah, BeHear Chief Audiologist

My name is Suhail Habib Allah and I am an audiologist. I am also an electrical engineer with a specialty in software programming. My dream was to bridge the gap between audiology and technology and develop a device that empowers the user with more control over their hearing while providing high-fidelity sound.

Enter, BeHear.

In 2015, I joined Alango Technologies and took a leading role in the development of the BeHear product line: hearables that provide cutting edge hearing technology at minimal effort for the user. BeHear hearing amplifiers are powerful, professional hearing enhancement solutions.

BeHear devices are a combination of a hearing amplification headset and a dedicated app that enables user control over sound definitions. The app walks the user through the set up and fine tuning of what he or she hears. Front end algorithms were incorporated to improve the SNR (Signal to Noise Ratio) in complex listening situations. Hearing mode presets were designed to help the user switch between different modes in real time.

The core of the app and the element on which the sound customization is based is our hearing test. Accurate hearing screening has always been the foundation of successful rehabilitation and device fitting, it’s no different for BeHear. Our innovation is putting a professional quality screening tool in the hands of the user. We knew that the customization capabilities would differentiate our offering. That’s why we invested a lot of time developing the hearing test, putting it through extensive field testing and fine tuning of capabilities before its release.

In the second stage of BeHear development, we worked on the fitting formula. Our goal was to deliver crystal clear, sharp sound, providing users a comfortable sound range, thus reducing listening strain and enabling comfortable use for extended periods of time.

We developed a fitting formula based on equalization of the of the loudness dynamic range across the frequency spectrum, giving more weight and emphasizing the high frequencies – especially in the region 2-4 KHz.  This formula, combined with some of the company’s proprietary technology, resulted in an industry-disruptive assistive hearing device with clear advantages:

  • high end sound enhancement features – the quality of a hearing aid in the form of an easy to adopt hearable;
  • disrupting the process of getting a hearing rehabilitation device – reducing the timeframe between when a person recognizes that he or she needs hearing help and getting a device can be significant in preventing further hearing degradation, in addition to maintaining quality of life. The old, complex and prolonged process is replaced with a new streamlined option;
  • gives the users more independence and control – this is important for emotional wellbeing!
  • affordable – cost is known to be one of the significant barriers in adopting hearing aids. BeHear makes quality hearing accessible to all.

It’s been over a decade since I first began this journey. Learning to be an engineer as well as an audiologist enabled me to realize my vision of leveraging technology to create a new hearing experience. It also provided me the opportunity to play a significant role in the development of BeHear, which is making life sound better for people, worldwide.


Written by Suhail Habib Allah, BeHear Chief Audiologist

Let’s talk on LinkedIn

Follow us on social media

You’ve really hit a home run with BeHear PROXY!

April 06, 2021

I am standing in my kitchen now, listening to “Abraham, Martin and John” through the device’s speakers (stereo enhancement turned on). It sounds AWESOME, and yet if I take it off, it is certainly not loud enough to bother my next door neighbors, like my TV used to…

BeHear-PROXY-hearing-amplifier-reviewer-Jan-Wagner
Jan Wagner, syndicated columnist & photojournalist, AutoMatters & More

The sound fidelity is crystal clear, the tonal qualities are just right, I can hear fine nuances in the music, it is comfortable to wear and it is so easy to use. I love the fact that I do not have to use the earbuds. I don’t want to stop listening.

Now I’m mellowing out to the sound of Barbra Streisand singing “What’s it All About, Alfie?” I am in music heaven!

A few weeks ago I had created a personalized hearing profile in the BeHear app when I reviewed the BeHear ACCESS. Is it possible to copy that hearing profile over to the BeHear PROXY, or will I need to get my hearing tested again?

I really love listening to my music library, while I wear the BeHear PROXY. It lets me consistently listen to pleasing, high fidelity audio, without the need to use earbuds or headphones. When walking, driving and engaging in other activities, the BeHear PROXY hearing amplifier should enable users to clearly hear, and be aware of, all that is going on around them.

Now, finally, I can enjoy my music at a volume that is loud enough for me to hear it, without bothering anyone. Life is good. You’ve really hit a home run with BeHear PROXY.

3 ways to avoid using our products

March 18, 2021

Our goal is to democratize hearing and help make everyone’s life sound better. That’s why we make cutting edge hearing technology accessible to everyone who needs it. BUT, since prevention is the best cure, we’ve decided to share 3 easy hearing tips that will help protect you and the people you love from hearing loss in the future:

Hearing tip № 1

Love to spend time at restaurants and bars with loud music? How about rock concerts? Prepare to be our customer! The outbreak of Covid19 made it difficult to do many of the things we most enjoy. The good news is that, as vaccinations become more prevalent and quarantines are opened, we are going back to our old routines. The bad news is that loud music creates a dangerous level of sound which damages your ears.
Avoid being close to loudspeakers, especially for extended periods of time. Prepare in advance and use earplugs or give your ears a rest by going outside from time to time.

Hearing tip № 2

Working in a loud place without hearing protection? Welcome to our club!
Many people are exposed the sounds generated by machinery during their working hours. That means extended exposure, day after day, for years. Hearing loss occurs slowly, over time and so, for example, a construction worker might not notice there is a problem until it is too late. This is a case of better safe than sorry! Your employer should supply you with ear protection in the form of noise cancelling headphones, or at least earplugs. If they don’t, it’s worth purchasing your own earplugs. The expense is small but the benefit in avoiding accumulative damage is large. 

Hearing tip № 3

Are you a parent to a teenager? It’s important to check whether or not they are blasting their eardrums, paving the way to a future of hearing loss.
Teenagers commonly prefer listening to music at the highest possible volume to lose themselves in the beat. If you can hear the music “spilling out” of their room or headset, it is too loud – but that also means you are in luck! It’s highly probable that your teenager is blasting his or her ears via their headphones and, unless you actively check, you will never know. Be active in teaching hearing health awareness. Your kids might think you are annoying now (they will for a million other things anyway), but they will thank you in the future. 

Whenever possible, it is best to prevent difficulties, but if you are currently experiencing hearing loss, no worries! Our hearables offer a simple and accessible hearing enhancement solution that make life sound better. There is no reason to miss out on the activities and interactions that you love!

Shattering disability stigma for World Hearing Day with Israeli BeHear technology enabling self-administered hearing screening

March 04, 2021

A.R.M. and BeKol leverage BeHear’s innovative hearing check kiosks to raise hearing health awareness and accessibility

A special initiative by A.R.M. Medical Center, experts in Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck, and Oral and Maxillofacial surgery; BeKol, the organization representing the hard of hearing in Israel; and BeHear by Alango Technologies is designed to shatter disability stigma while promoting hearing health awareness and accessibility. 

Imagine a world where disabilities are addressed without stigma. Imagine a world where all people are treated with dignity and respect and can easily implement technological solutions without experiencing shame. While this seems like an obvious and morally imperative goal, when it comes to hearing health there is a painful dissonance between its importance and the general levels of awareness and accessibility. Worst of all, there is a high level of social stigma attached to hearing as a disability, as if it is indicative of being “broken”, old, or damaged, as well as the negative and completely inappropriate association of cognitive incapacity.  

World Hearing Day is an annual global initiative sponsored by the World Health Organization (WHO), designed to raise awareness and promote hearing care at community and national levels across the world. This year’s theme “Hearing care for ALL! Screen. Rehabilitate. Communicate.” fits perfectly with the A.R.M.-BeKol-BeHear initiative to provide free, accessible hearing screening.

BeHear Express Hearing Check Kiosk
The A.R.M. Medical Center and Bekol, the organization representing the hard of hearing in Israel, are raising hearing health awareness and accessibility by leveraging BeHear’s innovative kiosks for self-administered hearing checks.

Using equipment donated by Alango to BeKol, free access will be provided to BeHear’s hearing check kiosks located at the A.R.M. Medical Center in Assuta Hospital, Tel Aviv. The innovative kiosks offer a unique balance of user-independence with precision results, testing in a quick and simple process that anyone can undertake without the help of a healthcare professional. The system guides the user through a 5-minute hearing assessment using an intuitive interface available in English, Hebrew, Russian, and Arabic. Results are received on the spot and can be sent to the user’s email. The user is then invited to compare “what they hear” with “what they could be hearing” once BeHear’s advanced hearing enhancement technology is applied to the sound they hear.

“Increasing visibility raises acceptance and reduces social stigma.” states Dr. Alexander Goldin, Founder and CEO of Alango Technologies. “There is no excuse for people to be deterred from attaining the hearing care they need due to complicated bureaucracy, fear of going for screening, or high costs. We hope that through the donation of our kiosks to Bekol and the screenings that will take place, many people will be empowered to take control of their hearing health and address any issues they might have sooner, rather than later. People tend to like playing with gadgets so many will find that our hearing assessment is actually an interesting and engaging experience.”

“We at A.R.M. Medical Center work hard to raise awareness about the importance of early diagnosis of hearing loss and the need for appropriate and customized treatment,” states Prof. Michal Lunz, Director of the Department of Ear Surgery and Hearing Rehabilitation, A.R.M. “Each year,  in conjunction with World Hearing Day, we hold a special week-long event. We invite the public to come and get tested by A.R.M.’s team of experts and receive the best diagnosis and consulting, all at no cost, in order to make good hearing health accessible to everyone.”

BeKol Executive Director Damian Kelman explains, “Bekol constantly strives to raise awareness and increase accessibility to good hearing health. World Hearing Day 2021 marks a unique opportunity to enhance Bekol’s efforts to provide free hearing screenings to the general population and to elderly adults in particular. With the newly and highly appreciated addition of BeHear kiosks to our centers and hearing mobile stations, we at Bekol look forward to expanding and maximizing the impact of our screening program throughout the year as well. Increasing testing availability and simplifying the process is a critical part of disrupting the barriers to hearing health.”

Free screenings using the Hearing Check Kiosks will take place over the course of two days (March 8 & March 10). The appointments are conditional on pre-registration by phone: 03-7645464, and will take place at A.R.M. Medical Center located at 20 Habarzel Street, 1st floor, Assuta Hospital, Ramat Hachayal, Tel Aviv. In addition to the hearing screenings, A.R.M. offers at no cost consulting appointments with its team of leading otologists and audiologists.

About A.R.M.

A.R.M Medical Center was founded in 2009 as a center of expertise in the fields of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck, and Oral and Maxillofacial surgery. With its team of leading Israeli doctors, it works to deliver all-encompassing solutions for patient needs, with full consideration of the best available technologies. The A.R.M Medical Center operates within “Assuta”, the most advanced private hospital in Israel. For more information, visit: www.aram-ent.co.il/en

About BeKol

BeKol is the organization representing the hard of hearing in Israel that strives for the empowerment, attainment of equal opportunities, and real integration of the hard of hearing in Israel, in all areas of life. The goal of the BeKol is to ensure that every hard of hearing person in Israel will be able to make the most of their skills, to the extent that their heart desires. For more information, visit: www.bekol.org

About Alango Technologies

Alango Technologies, Ltd. (www.alango.com) has been developing sound enhancement technologies since 2002, selling over 50 million software licenses that improve the audio experience in automotive, entertainment, and smart home applications around the world. Realizing the importance and opportunity of combining the sound enhancement technology found in hearing aids with the advances and costs in the consumer electronics world, the Company is now using its field-proven expertise in sound technology to create products for personal hearing enhancement: the “BeHear” product line (www.WearAndHear.com).

###

BeHear, HearLink, and Wear & Hear are registered trademarks of Alango Technologies, Ltd. in the United States. All other trademarks are the property of their respective holders.

Also published at:

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/shattering-disability-stigma-world-hearing-160200047.html

March 2021 Newsletter

March 02, 2021

3 Things for You

♦ NEW PRODUCT offers surround sound on your shoulders! ♦ Hearing is believing – customer becomes advocate ♦ How to keep your ears young and your mind sharp ♦

To get these newsletters sent directly to your inbox, register here. ♦

Read the complete March 2021 newsletter here.

PROXY Listening Experience Helps Battle Zoom Fatigue

February 24, 2021

Alango releases BeHear PROXY, a customizable Bluetooth neck speaker and hearing amplifier that provides a comfortable, rich stereo sound experience for TV watching, mobile calls, audio/video streaming, gaming, and live conversations

Alango Technologies announced that a new model called BeHear® PROXY has been added to its line of hearing enhancement solutions.

The COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent preference to shelter at home have driven remote working, virtual communications and TV watching through the roof. It turns out that virtual communication is stressful for the brain and over-use of these platforms can create a type of tiredness, worry, or burnout which has been coined “Zoom fatigue”.

BeHear’s PROXY can help alleviate some of the stress of Zoom fatigue by creating a comfortable, customized, immersive listening experience. Straining to hear and the need to focus almost entirely on vocals (in contrast to an in-person interaction that provides many more visual cues) is a major factor in Zoom fatigue. PROXY connects to the audio source to deliver sound in close proximity (get it?) to the ears, while Alango’s advanced hearing enhancement technology clarifies dialogue and customizes amplification based on the wearer’s unique hearing profile.

BeHear PROXY neck speaker and personalized hearing amplifier

PROXY’s ergonomic form factor rests lightly on the shoulders, emitting rich surround sound enhanced by Alango’s technology. This enables the wearer to enjoy high quality sound without having anything in the ears, worrying that earbuds will fall out or getting hot from over-the-ears headphones. Ears-free is a different and cool way to listen but the true beauty in PROXY is the customization capabilities.

Alango’s audio experts designed the product to produce an individualized hearing profile for every user, including those who are hard of hearing. BeHear PROXY can be used with hearing aids, or as a back-up hearing amplifier to relieve hearing aid fatigue. Amplification can be ~20% stronger than that of a mobile phone or computer speaker – but it is applied only where and when needed, according to the user’s hearing profile. Amplification on its own just makes everything louder. The BeHear magic is in custom fitting the sound to each user and supporting their individual hearing needs.

“We developed BeHear PROXY to create a new hearing experience, to make life sound better when watching TV and participating in mobile and video calls,” notes Alango’s CEO and Founder, Dr. Alexander Goldin. “In these difficult times, it’s good to be able to alleviate the stress of Zoom fatigue and straining to hear. Why not pamper yourself with a comfortable and satisfying listening experience?”

BeHear PROXY also includes extractable earbuds that support personal sound amplification for live conversations. The earbuds are also useful for private listening during mobile phone and video calls, or while watching television when others are present but not engaged. BeHear PROXY can pair simultaneously via Bluetooth to two different devices, such as a smartphone and a computer.

About Alango Technologies
Alango Technologies, Ltd. (www.alango.com) has been developing sound enhancement technologies since 2002, selling over 50 million software licenses that improve the audio experience in automotive, entertainment, and smart home applications around the world. Realizing the importance and opportunity of combining the sound enhancement technology found in hearing aids with the advances and costs in the consumer electronics world, the Company is now using its field-proven expertise in sound technology to create products for personal hearing enhancement: the “Wear & Hear” product line (www.WearAndHear.com).

###

BeHear, HearLink, and Wear & Hear are registered trademarks of Alango Technologies, Ltd. in the United States. All other trademarks are the property of their respective holders.

Also published at:

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/proxy-listening-experience-helps-battle-143500018.html

Are Hearables part of your anti-aging routine? If not, they should be.

January 12, 2021

Alango’s Wear & Hear line of hearables integrate Alango’s hearing enhancement technology into Bluetooth headsets, breaking down barriers to hearing health, reducing the risk of cognitive decline and even dementia. 

Alango Technologies is presenting a new and important angle to their line of hearables – hearing health as part of the regimen to maintain mental and physical wellness and improve quality of life.

The correlation between untreated hearing loss and cognitive decline is well documented. Hearing loss makes social interaction more difficult, reduces the ability to connect with others, and often leads to isolation and decreased physical activity. This results in a marked decline in physical and even mental health. Recent research has uncovered that untreated hearing loss in mid-life is the most significant factor in the later onset of dementia(!).

This discovery is shocking, but it is also good news. Awareness of the significance of hearing health, coupled with the realization that hearing degradation is a natural part of life, is the first step to implementing mitigatory care.

The challenge is in overcoming the psychological and financial barriers to seeking care. 15% of the general population experience some level of hearing loss but because degradation is gradual, many don’t recognize the decline until it becomes serious. On average it takes 7 years from the moment a person accepts that he or she is experiencing hearing loss to the point where they seek treatment. Technological solutions cannot fully compensate for the physical and mental capabilities which are lost when ears go untreated. Severe hearing loss needs to be treated with hearing aids or surgery, solutions that are both expensive and complicated.

Alango’s CEO and Founder, Dr. Alexander Goldin, goes one step further, declaring that public understanding of hearing health needs to shift from the realm of treating disability to become an integral part of anti-aging regimens:

“Our BeHear headsets are hearing enhancement solutions that provide the audio quality of hearing aids at the price of competing hearables. Implementing these solutions sooner, rather than later, serve as a way to enhance hearing when the problem is mild to moderate but also as a way to keep the ears young and the mind sharp and help avoid worse problems in the future.”

Leveraging wearables to monitor and improve health and wellness has been the rage for a number of years. Melding Alango’s proprietary hearing enhancement technology into standard-looking Bluetooth headsets breaks down barriers to maintaining hearing health and opens the door to sustaining a high quality of life, longer.

For more information: meet up with a member of the Alango team at CES2021, or throughout the year.

About Alango Technologies
Alango Technologies, Ltd. (www.alango.com) has been developing sound enhancement technologies since 2002, selling over 50 million software licenses that improve the audio experience in automotive, entertainment, and smart home applications around the world. Realizing the importance and opportunity of combining the sound enhancement technology found in hearing aids with the advances and costs in the consumer electronics world, the Company is now using its field-proven expertise in sound technology to create products for personal hearing enhancement: the “Wear & Hear” product line (www.WearAndHear.com).

###

BeHear, HearLink, and Wear & Hear are registered trademarks of Alango Technologies, Ltd. in the United States. All other trademarks are the property of their respective holders.

Also published at:

https://apnews.com/press-release/pr-newswire/technology-lifestyle-aging-diseases-and-conditions-hearing-loss-and-deafness-2251582690d57c6ec0b5c1a8afef5e09

Alango – Wear & Hear Products Win Top Honors in NPTA Program

December 28, 2020

9th Annual New Product & Technology Awards (NPTA) Program Recognizes Two Wear & Hear Products

NPTA 2020 Awards Winner

Haifa, Israel – December 28, 2020 – Alango – Wear & Hear was a two-time winner in the 2020 New Product & Technology Awards. The BeHear ACCESS assistive hearing headset received a Gold Award in the Communication Devices category, and the BeHear PROXY assistive hearing neck speaker received a Gold Award in the Lifestyle Assistive Devices category. The program, presented by the Mature Market Resource CenterSM, a national clearinghouse for the senior market, is the first awards program of its kind to recognize the most innovative products & services for older adults and their families.

BeHear ACCESS Assistive Hearing Headset Recognized in the Communication Devices Category; BeHear PROXY in the Lifestyle Assistive Devices Category

“We are pleased that our efforts to develop life-changing, high-quality, affordable, multi-functional, self-fit hearing solutions have been recognized in the 9th annual New Product & Technology Awards program this year,” stated Dr. Alexander Goldin, CEO and Founder of Alango Technologies. “Many aspects of physical, emotional and even mental health are impacted by the ability to hear. For us, these are more than products, they are a gateway to quality of life, health and wellness for those who have lost them due to problems with their auditory system.”

Entries were judged by a distinguished panel of mature market experts from across the United States for overall excellence of design, content, creativity and relevance to the senior market.

BeHear ACCESS is a Personalizable Assistive Hearing Device

BeHear ACCESS is a stylish, affordable, multi-functional, self-managed hearing enhancement device for mild-to-moderately-severe hearing loss. Housed in a high-quality Bluetooth stereo headset, it features advanced technology for personalized amplification of important sounds, based on a self-administered hearing assessment. The headset can be customized in real-time to suit all types of hearing situations: live conversations, mobile calls, music streaming, TV watching, sounds in nature, and more. Two built-in Telecoil receivers ensure best possible hearing in locales equipped with hearing loop technology.

BeHear PROXY Makes TV Watching Enjoyable Again

BeHear PROXY is a self-fit hearing amplifier that looks (and functions) like a standard Bluetooth stereo neck speaker, providing a rich listening experience for television watching, gaming, and music streaming. With the help of its extractable earphones and a dedicated smartphone app, it also provides personalizable amplification for live conversations and hands-free mobile calls. Together with the HearLink® PLUS Bluetooth audio transmitter it provides unmatched accessibility and improved language comprehension for television programs, with perfect audio-video synchronization. It is suitable for use with or without hearing aids.

About Alango Technologies

Alango Technologies, Ltd. (www.alango.com) has been developing sound enhancement technologies since 2002, selling over 50 million software licenses that improve the audio experience in automotive, entertainment, and smart home applications around the world. Realizing the importance and opportunity of combining the sound enhancement technology found in hearing aids with the advances and costs in the consumer electronics world, the Company is now using its field-proven expertise in sound technology to create products for personal hearing enhancement: the “Wear & Hear” product line (www.WearAndHear.com).

BeHear, HearLink, and Wear & Hear are registered trademarks of Alango Technologies, Ltd. in the United States. All other trademarks are the property of their respective holders.

###

How to keep your ears young and your mind sharp

February 28, 2021

Did you know that hearing health impacts not only your physical, but also your emotional and mental wellbeing?  Most people don’t realize how important, or how complex hearing is. It’s the one sense we just don’t think about.

We experience the richness of life through our ears and don’t even notice. If a grilled cheese sandwich doesn’t sizzle, it doesn’t arouse our appetite in the same way. When we want to describe a city as exciting, we tend to focus on the bustling crowd and the urban beat. For nature it’s the bubbling of a brook, chirping birds or rustling leaves. 

Sound injects feeling into experiences that would otherwise be mute, flat, and distant.

Curious about how the ears and brain work to process sound? Watch this short clip!

When we truly understand how complex the hearing mechanism is, it is easier to understand why it is a good idea to make hearing health part of our self-care anti-aging regimen, to maintain mental and physical wellness.  

Hearing loss and cognitive function are related. The correlation between untreated hearing loss and cognitive decline is well documented. Hearing loss makes social interaction more difficult, reduces the ability to connect with others, and often leads to isolation and decreased physical activity. This results in a marked decline in physical and even mental health. Recent research has uncovered that untreated hearing loss in mid-life is the most significant factor in the later onset of dementia(!).

This discovery is shocking, but it is also good news. Awareness of the significance of hearing health, coupled with the realization that hearing degradation is a natural part of life, is the first step to implementing mitigatory care.

The challenge is in overcoming the psychological and financial barriers to seeking care. 15% of the general population experience some level of hearing loss but because degradation is gradual, many don’t recognize the decline until it becomes serious. On average it takes 7 years from the moment a person accepts that he or she is experiencing hearing loss to the point where they start to seek treatment.

When hearing loss is ignored and left untreated, the auditory system is deprived of sound, resulting in subsequent atrophy of the auditory nerves and speech processing areas of the brain. In other words, untreated hearing loss goes beyond the ears to affect the brain itself. Unfortunately, technological solutions cannot fully compensate for the physical and mental capabilities which are lost when ears go untreated. Severe hearing loss needs to be treated with hearing aids or surgery, solutions that are both expensive and complicated.

So how can we attain the best possible hearing health and maintain a high quality of life, for as long as possible?

3 steps for keeping the ears young and the mind sharp

Step 1: Awareness

Understanding that hearing matters can help us protect ourselves and those we love. Try to notice if you or someone close to you frequently asks people to repeat themselves, has trouble making out conversations in noisy places, or gets frustrated trying to understand dialogue on TV.

Step 2: Prevention

Age-related hearing loss is something most of us will eventually experience ourselves or in someone close to us. Preventative care can help delay onset so it is a good idea to protect the ears whenever possible. Avoid environments that are extremely loud, especially when the volume remains intense over extended periods of time. But what if you are a factory worker? Or work in a bar? Prepare in advance! Use protective gear, a headset or earplugs. It’s better to be safe than sorry!

Step 3: Get hearing help early!

Implementing assistive hearing solutions sooner, rather than later, addresses hearing challenges when the problem is mild to moderate. This is a way to keep the ears young and the mind sharp and help avoid worse problems in the future. BeHear hearables for example, are hearing enhancement solutions that provide the audio quality of hearing aids at the price of competing hearables. BeHear’s sophisticated technology provides a customizable solution that enables the wearer to self-tune and control his or her own hearing without having to go through the complex and expensive process of getting a hearing aid.