Categories for News

Six Features of Modern Hearing Aids

April 13, 2017 4:27 pm

In much the same way that technology has transformed the ways in which people watch television, read news, and socialize, it has also altered the ways in which medical devices such as hearing aids have been designed and built to include features that are tailored to a modern user’s lifestyle.

Despite these technological advances, there are still many who have concerns about the functionality and ease of use of a hearing device and/or fears that it will be noticeable while worn.

So, how can hearing care practitioners assure their patients that high-tech hearing aids and accessories are no longer stuck in the past and that new, state-of-the-art devices are now adapted to fit into today’s fast-paced world?

Luckily, the Better Hearing Institute (BHI) has compiled a “little-known” fact sheet about modern hearing aids that may help to put your patients at ease and allay their concerns. In this article, we’ll share the highlights, edited and adapted from the BHI website.

  1. Better Able to Weather the Elements– For those leading an active lifestyle, there are hearing aids on the market that are designed to be waterproof and resistant to humidity, sweat, and dust. It’s no longer necessary to compromise your hearing for the sake of your fitness routine or favorite sport.
  2. Designed to Be Discreet– Today’s hearing aids are made to fit in the ear canal without being obtrusive or overbearing. Some models are so small, they can fit into a user’s ear without being visible from the outside, so no one, other than the person wearing them, is aware that a hearing device is being worn.
  3. Connects to Electronic Devices– With wireless connectivity built into a device, hearing aids can synchronize with smartphones, TVs, computers, and MP3 players so that a custom volume can be achieved easily and comfortably.
  4. Can Be Utilized in a Variety of Environments – Hearing loss can come in different forms, and today’s hearing devices are able to adjust accordingly, whether you’re sitting at a crowded party straining to hear conversation or on a conference call where a variety of people may be talking.
  5. Portable and Easy to Charge– Much like your smartphone, some hearing aids can be put in a charger at night, and ready to go by morning, unlike previous models with small batteries that could be easily lost or would need replacement.
  6. Choices– The range of hearing aids are as varied as the people that utilize them. There are many different styles, colors, and models to suit a range of personalities and lifestyles.


This content is provided to the 4MyHearingBiz community by CareCreditThe Hearing Review, and also adapted from a fact sheet on the BHI website. 

Party On! Holiday Party Tips

November 29, 2016 9:43 am

holiday-party-photoIt’s your annual holiday party, held at party house or restaurant. The room is crowded, a band is in the far corner blasting a holiday song and the din of conversation rises to a steady roar. You can barely hear your own thoughts when who comes over, but your boss. He has a mouthful of food and big smile on his face. He asks a question and eagerly waits for your response. You think it has something to do with Oscar the Grouch.  Hmmm. Do you take a chance and offer an opinion that Oscar is simply a misunderstood Muppet, do you simply nod or do you ask him “What?” only to be faced with this same dilemma again.

There may be no easy fix, but perhaps with a little foresight, the stress of this type of situation can be lessened a bit. Many of us will be partaking in festivities that involve, among other things, noisy conditions, making communication challenging.  It’s often coined that communication is a two way street and by addressing both sides, perhaps these difficult situations can be made easier.

Move away from noise sources

Look for a side room at an event, one away from the band or DJ if that is a problem. If possible, turn down the noise source, such as a TV. Hearing in noise is very difficult, even with adequate hearing. Situating yourself in the corner of the room, not in the middle, may cut down on some of the extraneous noise. As a listener, cut yourself some slack, and realize you will not hear 100% of the conversation in an extremely noisy environment. Even those with ‘perfect’ hearing find it hard to hear in some settings.  Also, don’t be shy about asking a hostess to turn down the background music. Chances are you are not the only one it is bothering and others may thank you.

Don’t talk with your mouthful

Seems obvious enough, but your mother was right! This is not only rude, but can affect speaking style and make it hard for a listener to understand.  Chew, swallow, speak!

One Conversation at a Time

This may be hard for all the multi-taskers out there, but you can only really listen to one person at a time. Give your full attention to the one speaker, waiting your turn before you speak and definitely put away phone when conversing!  That not only diverts attention, but tells the speaker they are not that important.

Speak face to face

Shouting from across the room or speaking to the back of a head is a sure way not to be heard. Looking directly at the listener, face to face at eye level, is key. The sound energy is directed towards the listener who can also read facial expression to gather more of the meaning of the message.

Slow down the rate of speech

This is probably one of the most challenging things to do. We live in a fast paced world where we have to speak quickly to get in our two cents. Slowing our rate as we speak also forces us to articulate better, allowing the listener to keep up with the conversation and hear the speech sounds better.

Most importantly, Relax and enjoy yourself!

Hart Hearing Centers Named Finalist for the 2016 Ethie Award

November 3, 2016 3:48 pm

2016 Ethie Award

October 2016

Hart Hearing Centers was one of five finalists selected for the 2016 Ethie Award, an annual honor given to local businesses and organizations by the Rochester Area Business Ethics Foundation.

Finalists are chosen by an independent panel of judges after reviewing an application and site visits.

“Dedication to patient care and their satisfaction have always been our number one goal. We are proud to be recognized for such a high honor. Our team of Audiologists strive to make a difference in people’s lives every day, “says Stephen Hart, Au.D.

The Rochester Business Ethics Award program was started in 2003.

See more at

About Hart Hearing Centers: Hart Hearing Centers have been providing comprehensive, state of the art hearing care for almost 40 years. Hart Has five Rochester area locations, each staffed by a Doctor of Audiology, with extensive experience and training in fitting and dispensing today’s advanced hearing technology. Hart Hearing Centers’ mission is to provide the best possible hearing solution for every client, with follow-up to ensure continued benefit and satisfaction with the instruments and our services

More information is available at or by calling 585-266-4130

Rachel Gordon, (585) 820-8885
Steve Hart, Steve@ (585) 266-4130

Taking the First Step

June 14, 2016 8:31 am

Female nurse is speaking in senior woman earThe primary role of our ears and auditory system is to hear. If you suffer from hearing loss you are not alone. Did you know that 1 out of every 3 people over the age of 65 has hearing loss? Even more alarming is that far too many people chose to ignore their hearing loss, deny it or live with it.   Recent research supports what many audiologists have known all along: the effects of hearing loss impact much more than communication. Those with untreated hearing loss also suffer from a host of other ailments such as memory loss, increased risk of dementia, balance problems and even loss of income.

The good news is a vast majority of people with hearing loss can benefit from the use of hearing instruments. Treating hearing loss with hearing instruments not has a positive impact on communication and socialization, but also increases personal safety, helps with the ability to learn new tasks, decreases fatigue, depression, isolation, and enhances job performance and earning potential.

Dr. Sergei Kochkin from the Better Hearing Institute sums it up quite well. “Hearing loss is far more serious than people realize. When left unaddressed, hearing loss negatively affects virtually every aspect of an individual’s life.”

One of the common objections to purchasing hearing aids is cost. We can always find other ways to spend money; saving for a vacation, a home improvement or just a rainy day. In reality the return on the investment of hearing aids can be tremendous. People are more confident and outgoing. Job performance can improve along with the overall quality of life. It’s hard to put a price tag on that!

Taking the first step:

Everyone has a different trigger that makes them finally say enough. When you or your loved one reach that point it’s time to take the first step. Schedule a complete and thorough hearing evaluation with an audiologist. He or she will explain the test results, discuss their recommendations and set a plan of action.  You may find something as simple as communication strategies will help, or perhaps you need hearing instruments or assistive technology.  Taking that first step may be the hardest, but the consequences of ignoring one’s hearing loss can ultimately be too serious to overlook.

Ready to get started? Request an appointment today to learn more about your options and what will work best for you.

Improve Your Hearing & Improve Your Life!

May 12, 2016 9:26 am

hearingaids_homepic (1)Here are 5 great ways that improving your hearing with hearing aids will help improve your life!

  1. Ignoring hearing loss hurts quality of life. Research shows that when left unaddressed, hearing loss is frequently associated with other physical, mental, and emotional health issues that diminish quality of life. Depression, withdrawal from social situations, a lessened ability to cope, and reduced overall psychological health are just some of the conditions associated with unaddressed hearing loss.
  2. Addressing hearing loss boosts mood. People with untreated hearing loss often feel angry, frustrated, anxious, isolated, and depressed. But research shows that when they use hearing aids, their mental health often rallies. Many regain emotional stability, become more socially engaged, feel a greater sense of safety and independence, and see a general improvement in their overall quality of life.
  3. Using hearing aids can help bolster self-confidence. Research shows that when people with hearing loss use hearing aids, many feel more in control of their lives and less self-critical. One BHI study found that the majority of people with mild and severe hearing loss felt better about themselves and life overall as a result of using hearing aids.
  4. Good communication enriches relationships and social support. Healthy relationships rest largely on good communication. In one BHI study, nearly 7 out of 10 participants reported improvements in their ability to communicate effectively in most situations because of their hearing aid use. More than half said using hearing aids improved their relationships at home, their social lives, and their ability to join in groups. Many even saw improvements in their romance.
  5. Today’s hearing aids are better than ever and virtually invisible. Dramatic new technological advances have revolutionized hearing aids in recent years. Many are virtually invisible, sitting discreetly and comfortably inside the ear canal. Some are even waterproof or rechargeable. Best of all, they’re wireless. That means they’re able to stream sound from smartphones, home entertainment systems, and other electronics directly into your hearing aid(s) at volumes just right for you.

So if you’ve been thinking about getting hearing aids or know someone who is hard of hearing, think about the many ways your life will improve.  Not only will you hear better, but you’ll feel better too. And isn’t it time you did something for you?

5 Tips for Hearing Protection

April 27, 2016 9:18 am

EarmuffsAs the Weather begins to change and we spend more time outdoors it is important to be mindful of our environment, activities and noise levels. Concerts, Lawn mowers, outdoor power tools, motorcycles, fireworks are just a few examples of common noises. There are many many noises we come in contact with every day. Believe it or not, even onetime exposure can damage your hearing. Here are some tips to help you protect your ears.

  1. Protection

If you chose to remember only one thing on this list, this is by far the most important! Noise Induced Hearing Loss is 100% preventable. Turn down the iPod or radio. Wear protection at concerts or when using loud equipment. Be smart: you know if it’s too loud. Move away from the noise source or use something to cover the ear and protect the cochlea, the sensory organ of hearing.

  1. Vaccinate Preventable diseases such as measles, mumps, rubella and whooping cough have the potential to cause hearing loss. Avoid the chance by making sure vaccinations are current for yourself and family members.
  2. Exercise Recent studies indicate people who partake in regular aerobic exercise have better hearing that those that are more sedentary, even if they listen to music while they do so. So get out and enjoy the spring weather!
  3. Eat right A diet rich in vitamins A, C, folic acid, magnesium and omega-3 fatty acids may play a role in protecting certain structures in the inner ear.
  4. Avoid head injuries Trauma to the head may impact the middle or inner part of the ear and cause hearing loss. Wear a helmet when needed, wear a seatbelt in a car and seek medical attention when there is concern of a concussion.  The cochlea is housed in the skull and generally pretty well protected, but is vulnerable to injury when head trauma occurs.

Remember, it’s better to be safe than sorry and to lead by example. So be an example to friends and family the next time you are in a situation with loud noise and protect your ears. Learn more about hearing loss now!

Are you experiencing hearing loss symptoms, or do you want to speak with a hearing professional? Request an appointment with Hart Hearing!

Hearing Aid Technology & Accessories

March 15, 2016 9:14 am

Phonak DECTThese days you may feel like it’s a whole new world! We recently saw the movie The Intern, and Like Robert De Niro there are times we wish things would slow down so we don’t feel like the old guy in the room. Technology changes at a rapid pace and fortunately for our patients at Hart Hearing Centers, we partner with some of the best names in the industry so we can stay at the forefront of changing technology.

Just like your smart phone, there are ‘smart’ hearing aids and accessories, making it easy to connect to your wireless world. One manufacturer we are particularly proud to represent and provide to our patients is Phonak. Not only does this company have an array of accessories to enhance your hearing experience, but with their on-going training providers like Hart Hearing Centers make sure you always get the maximum performance from your hearing devices.

Here are some of our favorite accessories:

  • Phonak DECT is a cordless phone that connects automatically and wirelessly to Phonak hearing aids and has a direct dial feature.
  • Phonak EasyCall connects Phonak hearing aids to any Bluetooth enabled cell phone, streaming the conversation directly to both hearing aids.
  • Roger Pen allows you to enjoy conversations in loud noise or over distance. Whether you are in a crowded restaurant, party or any situation where you are struggling to hear, the Roger Pen and Roger clip on Mic can help you hear and understand conversations without the stress and confusion of background noise.
  • Phonak TVLink allows you to watch TV at a volume everyone can enjoy so family members can stop asking you to turn down the volume. Used in combination with ComPilot or Compilot Air II, it offers easy understanding of TV programs and speech by turning Phonak hearing aids into wireless stereo headphones for your TV. It’s like creating a home theatre surround sound!

So the next time you’re in for a visit be sure to check out some of these accessories. It’s a whole new world out there and we want to be sure you enjoy every minute of it!

Want to talk to a hearing specialist? Request an appointment today!

Is Your Audiologist a Race Car Driver?

June 15, 2015 7:01 pm

Hart Hearing PorscheOn September 13th Dr. Stephen Hart of Hart Hearing Centers embarked on the journey of a lifetime. After a 1200 mile drive and 17 hour ferry ride he arrived on the island of Newfoundland, Canada to compete in the World Class Targa Newfoundland. One of only three international Targa motorsports, the event covers more than 1600 kilometers along twisty challenging roads.

Dr. Hart was joined by lifelong friend and teammate Tom Megan who owns the 1965 Porsche 356SC they raced in.

Though mechanical difficulties forced them to end their race early, Dr. Hart reached his goal of raising nearly $5,500 for the Bethany House, a local organization serving the needs of homeless women and children in the Rochester area.

It’s all or nothing when Dr. Stephen Hart, Au.D. takes on a challenge. When he took up biking, he committed to a 100 mile charity ride. Next, he started running with a group from the Metro Center YMCA and soon completed a marathon, again for a charity.

This September, Dr. Hart will embark on a 1500km trek around the island of Newfoundland when he competes in the World Class Targa Newfoundland September 13–18, 2015 with his lifelong friend, Tom Megan. The two will race in Megan’s 1965 Porsche 356SC.

But it’s not all about the Race. Dr. Stephen Hart will be racing to raise money for Bethany House, a shelter for homeless women and children in Rochester, N.Y.

“Targa Newfoundland gives me the opportunity to do something I love (road race) and also bring much needed attention to this organization. My wife Meg and I feel strongly about helping those less fortunate and supporting women as they get back on their feet.” says Dr. Hart.

Bethany House does not expect payment from the people it serves or receive funding from social services. All of their funding is through donations. “Donors like Steve and Meg Hart are the heart and soul of Bethany House. Their commitment and generosity help sustain our mission.” says Donna Ecker, Executive Director of Bethany House. Bethany House also operates a clothing room, a drop-in center and an emergency food cupboard.

Come September, people can follow Dr. Hart’s race online at the Hart Hearing Centers Facebook Page. Steve will be posting video from the driver’s vantage point with a GoPro Camera along with daily updates.

To support Bethany House, tax deductible donations can be sent c/o Hart Hearing Centers 468 Titus Avenue, Rochester N.Y. 14617. Checks should be made payable to Bethany House.

About Bethany House: Bethany House is a Catholic Worker House of Hospitality serving the needs of homeless women and children. Together at Bethany, the staff members, volunteers, guests, and former guests strive to create a peaceful welcoming atmosphere where everyone is at home. Bethany House is supported solely through the goodness of individuals, churches, and charitable groups.

More information is available at

Download the PDF Version

Better Hearing and Speech Month comes to Fairport Schools

May 22, 2014 7:16 pm

fairport_hearingtestMeghan Knitter, a music teacher at Martha Brown Middle School in Fairport, took part in an afternoon of hearing screenings on May 21st. A notice was sent out to all teachers in the Department of Music in the Fairport School District. Dr. Sarah Klimasewski tested staff members after school.

Take Care of Your Ears

April 2, 2014 8:04 pm

goodearhealthMany things change as we age; the human body was not designed to last forever, and we are all well aware that the better we take care of our body now the more miles we will get out of it. This philosophy of being proactive is especially important when it comes to ears. Why? Because most changes that occur in the ear are permanent. Here are things you can do now to keep your ears up to the task they were designed to do: hear.

  1. Protection, protection, protection Noise Induced Hearing Loss is 100% preventable. Turn down the iPod or radio. Wear protection at concerts or when using loud equipment, like a lawn mower. If you have to shout to be heard, the environment is too loud. Move away from the noise source or use something to cover the ear protect the cochlea, the sensory organ of hearing.
  2. Vaccinate Preventable diseases such as measles, mumps, rubella and whooping cough have the potential to cause hearing loss. Avoid the chance by making sure vaccinations are current for yourself and family members.
  3. Exercise Recent studies indicate people who partake in regular aerobic exercise have better hearing that those that are more sedentary, even if they listen to music while they do so. A healthy blood supply to all parts of the body, including the cochlea, is essential to the inner workings of this organ of hearing.
  4. Eat right A diet rich in vitamins A, C, folic acid, magnesium and omega-3 fatty acids may play a role in protecting certain structures in the inner ear.
  5. Avoid head injuries Trauma to the head may impact the middle or inner part of the ear and cause hearing loss. Wear a helmet when needed, wear a seatbelt in a car and seek medical attention when there is concern of a concussion. The cochlea is housed in the skull and generally pretty well protected, but is vulnerable to injury when head trauma occurs.
  6. Stay up to date on hearing tests If you’ve never had it checked, schedule a baseline test. If you have an existing hearing loss and wear hearing instruments, make sure the prescription is current. It is theorized that by maintaining an adequate level of hearing and keeping the auditory neural pathways ‘busy’, further hearing loss may be slowed down.
  7. Don’t smoke Or take in second hand smoke. Any habit or activity that constricts blood flow has the potential to damage the cochlea which depends on an oxygen rich blood supply.
  8. Don’t stick things in your ears! If you are worried about ear wax or have severe itching in the ear canal, seek medical help. Things like cotton swabs, bobby pins and paper clips have been known to damage the lining of the ear canal and/or the ear drum.
  9. Check your medicine cabinet Certain medications may cause hearing loss. Discuss both over the counter and prescriptive medicines with your PCP or pharmacist. If an ototoxic medication is necessary, make sure your hearing is monitored during the course of treatment.
  10. Have your ears checked if there is any pain or discharge These may be symptoms of an infection in the ear canal or middle ear. A side effect may be temporary hearing loss, which is especially detrimental to children of all ages.

Author: Sarah Klimasewski, Au.D.
Community Outreach Coordinator at Hart Hearing Centers