Community News
Senior Summer Safety Tips

Skin cancer is one of the most common and preventable forms of cancer. Apply SPF of at least 30 to 50—every two to four hours you are outdoors or riding in a car. Routinely wearing a quality pair of sunglasses protects the eyes from cataracts, a condition common among older adults. Look for a pair with a label showing they block 100% of UVA and UVB rays. As we grow older, the body doesn’t adjust to changes in temperature and humidity as quickly as in younger days. This puts seniors at higher risk for dehydration and sun-related illnesses, like heat stroke – so make sure to keep hydrated!

Time to Celebrate Women

The Women’s Expo is all about empowerment, wellbeing, pampering, fashion, friends and fun. It is a real celebration of Women complete with wall-to-wall carpets and chandeliers. Lots of great things to explore at the Women’s Expo with over 100 exhibitors showcasing their products and services. The 4th Annual Women’s Expo features wellness seminars, demonstrations, shopping, prizes and fashion shows. The Expo is FREE to attend. Plan to be at the largest Women’s Expo on Vancouver Island taking place in Nanaimo on September 23 and 24th. See the Expo website for Exhibitor Opportunities and information.

Blockchain and Online Gambling

Blockchain is a method of tracking transactions using a public, globally-distributed ledger. It is most commonly used for cryptocurrency, such as Bitcoin. Blockchain automatically and securely keeps a historical record, or ledger, of all transactions; working across a network of computers, cryptocurrencies can operate without a central authority. It is already revolutionizing online gambling and is now emerging in video games. For example, an emerging trend in gaming culture is the integration of cryptocurrency and non-fungible tokens (NFTs). NFTs allow blockchain to issue one-of-a-kind digital assets with unique attributes, meaning that players can acquire securely stored in-game assets. (Source: IntentaDigital

Tips for Finding a Good Audiologist

Hearing or balance problems can be uncomfortable to experience when you don’t know what is happening. The uncertainty and fear are one of the worst parts of wondering if there is a solution or if it might be a serious problem.

That is why it’s important to find an audiologist that you can trust will have your best interests at heart.

Use this guide to navigate finding a good audiologist that’s experienced, possesses good qualities that make you feel comfortable, and is the right fit for you. It’s essential

for finding the right diagnosis and long-term solutions to improve your quality of life.

What is an audiologist?

An audiologist is an expert with a vast amount of training, knowledge, and tools needed to diagnose and treat patients of all ages with varying levels of hearing loss.

Using advanced technology and tests to understand the cause of a patient’s hearing problem, if it’s permanent or curable, and its severity, audiologists work with them to determine the best course of treatment.

They can help or assess tinnitus, balance disorders, Hyperacusis and Misophonia as well as drastically improve your hearing with hearing aids and other assistive listening devices.

Typically, once a patient’s hearing tests are completed and it’s determined that assistive technology is needed for treatment, audiologists recommend the best hearing aids based on their unique needs, lifestyle, and prescription.

Audiologists program the hearing aids to align with their patient’s preferences and prescription and teach them how to properly care for their new technology. Several follow-up appointments are often scheduled to ensure the patient likes how the hearing aids sound, fit, and function. This time is also used to provide much-needed support, troubleshoot any areas of struggle and answer questions.

Good audiologists put time and effort into ensuring each patient’s experience with hearing aids is positive, they follow up, build a relationship and continue to provide excellent hearing care.

You want to ensure that you find an audiologist who is experienced, has the skill to provide effective solutions for your unique situation, and can answer your questions. It’s even more useful if they are up to date on industry insight from new or upcoming technology or findings from studies.

What Credentials Does an Audiologist Hold?

Many audiologists have their Master of Science in Audiology (M.Sc.), Registered Hearing Instrument Practitioner (RHIP), Registered Audiologist with the College of Speech and Hearing Health Professionals of BC (RAUD), and in some cases, further education.

In Canada, regulations require an audiologist to hold a Master’s degree or a doctorate in audiology. BC further regulates audiologists by requiring them to be registered with the College of Speech and Hearing Health Professionals of BC (CSHBC) in order to practice and provide services.

We recommend visiting the CSHBC website’s public register to confirm the audiologists you’re researching are in good standing with the College and have obtained the proper certifications.

Are there qualities I should look for?

Getting hearing aids can be an overwhelming process for individuals, especially those who have never used them before. An audiologist who is understanding, knowledgeable, and dedicated to helping you get the best hearing experience possible can make the process much more enjoyable.

Trustworthiness is one of the most important qualities needed for a good relationship and outcome. You need to be able to trust that your audiologist and clinic are committed to providing the best treatment care and outcome, as well as listening to your concerns, needs, and goals for your hearing.

Audiologists that are also genuine, empathetic, and compassionate towards the struggles you face and comfort levels throughout the process are able to provide outstanding care.

In addition, good audiologists tailor the experience to each patient and provide ongoing support. If you are feeling nervous or hesitant, finding an audiologist who is happy to move at a pace you are most comfortable with is incredibly helpful.

“I always tell patients that the journey doesn’t end at the hearing aid fitting. We are here to help them for as long as they need,” says Stephanie Sykes, audiologist and clinic owner of NexGen Hearing Penticton and Summerland BC.

We recommend looking for these qualities when meeting with audiologists. Do they give you the time you need? Are they compassionate? Do you trust that they have your best interests at heart?

Most people can recognize whether an audiologist is genuine or ingenuine from the first meeting or through word of mouth. Ensure you feel comfortable working with them and that they care about your wellbeing.

What do other people say about them?

It is good practice to see what other people are saying about the audiologists you are looking into.

If there are people in your life who have hearing loss and have received service from an audiologist, consider asking for their opinion. Learning about a trusted friend’s experience with an audiologist is a good indicator of whether or not you should take the next step and book an appointment.

Many patients leave honest, online reviews for clinics and audiologists. With a critical eye, read through the messages left by current or past patients who have similar needs to learn about their experiences.

You can also browse a hearing clinic’s website for more information on the services provided, their guiding principles on patient care, biographies about audiologists, and more. It’s a good way to get to know the hearing clinic and its team members better before pursuing its services.

Are you looking for a good audiologist?

Most individuals don’t pursue treatment for hearing loss until about 5 years after a diagnosis. Living with untreated hearing loss can pose a variety of risks such as mental fatigue, poor emotional wellbeing, and dangerous falls.

It’s very important to seek treatment for a better quality of life, but it’s just as crucial to choose a good audiologist who will provide excellent treatment and a positive experience.

Audiologists and hearing professionals at NexGen Hearing are passionate, dedicated, and experienced. They are here to support you on your journey to better hearing and help you experience an improved quality of life through exceptional care.

At NexGen Hearing, appointments, hearing aid supplies, and minor repairs are free of charge because every patient is valued and welcomed for as long as they need.

Patients are welcomed at over 45 clinics in the BC Interior, Lower Mainland, and Vancouver Island. To find a clinic near you and book an appointment, click here or call 1-877-606-6671.

The Path to a Fulfilling Career

Looking for work can be overwhelming enough, especially if you are currently out of a job and have bills and family demands pulling at you in all directions. This search for employment often causes confusion and struggle for many people, leading to less than satisfactory decisions fueled by desperation. So how can you use your time and energy wisely, along with making career choices that drive you forward rather that creating even more difficult situations, job fatigue, and depression? When looking inward at your skills, interests, values, and personal style coupled with information from formal assessments, a true picture of your self will start to emerge, and a path to a fulfilling career will become even more clear.

Stay Independent in Your Own Home

Everyone should be able to live at home for as long as they want to, even if it means getting a little help. From compassionate, licensed Caregivers to Registered Nurses, compassionate care is available because there’s no place like home. When you are searching for a Home Care Service, look for *A 24/7 Care Team that you can reach day or night, *An emphasis on reliability and professionalism, and *Carefully selected caregivers for a great fit with your loved one, who meet your needs, interests and personality. With the ability to age comfortably at home, your loved one is empowered to keep living life to its fullest. Happier Aging, at home, is our philosophy.

Live a Good Life

Here is some advice on how to live a good life. *Concentrate on what you can do rather than on what you can’t do. *Ask for the senior’s discount. It is always great to save money. *Stay in touch with friends and family. Never complain that they don’t come to see you or call you often enough when they do get in touch. *Keep learning. It will help your brain stay healthy. *Let go of that grudge. It only hurts you. *Make your life bigger than your aches and pains. *Appreciate the little things in life and laugh as often as possible

How to prevent hearing loss in the workplace

Noise-induced hearing loss is one of the leading work-related conditions and affects millions of people around the world. People who work with heavy machinery, in loud sound environments and noisy factories for example are commonly affected.

According to “Public Health Burden of Noise-Induced Hearing Loss” a report published by the CDC, over 10 million people suffer from noise-induced hearing damage. It’s become a public health concern and the statistics are only expected to rise.

Sound levels that are almost or more than 85 decibels or dbA, especially in enclosed spaces where sound can’t travel and for long periods of time, are considered dangerous and too much noise for individuals to withstand without hearing damage.

With the employer identifying the best protective measures and the employee taking the steps necessary, hearing loss can be prevented in the workplace.

How is hearing loss in the workplace caused?

When there are consistently excessive and loud noises, it can damage the hair cells in our inner ear. The hair cells are very important when it comes to hearing because they communicate with our brain to detect sounds.

Eventually, these cells may suffer from extensive damage and die off. The more cells that are damaged beyond repair, the more severe the hearing loss.

Tips to prevent hearing loss in the workplace:

1. Use Hearing Protection Devices (HPD)

When the sound or noise level is around or greater than the occupational exposure limits (often 85dBA), hearing protectors are essential for hearing health.

The correct type of HPD varies, but properly fitted earplugs or earmuffs are most commonly used and work well when limiting exposure and muting noise.

2. Safety Controls to protect workers from hearing loss

In situations where certain hazards can be replaced with a safer alternative, it’s recommended to take that precaution and use quieter equipment where possible. If not, use engineering controls to reduce the noise risk.

Physically modifying the workspace, equipment and processes can put the worker in control of the noise and also reduce their risk of noise-induced hearing loss.

It may mean changing the work process to limit loud machinery use, servicing a machine for quieter operation or using sound barriers and making better use of space to limit noise.

It all helps prevent hearing loss for workers and won’t negatively affect their quality of life.

3. Shift Rotations

Implementing shift rotation is a great way to limit the amount of noise a person is exposed to daily and is crucial to hearing protection.

For example, rotating schedules and reduced shift lengths provide additional protection workers need for their hearing health.

4. Education on preventing hearing loss

Workers should be receiving regular training with instructions about the best practices on how to prevent hearing loss, how to use HPDs, how to diagnose the early signs and symptoms of hearing loss and further prevention information.

There should also be warning signs wherever the noise is greater than 85dBA informing workers of the hazard and need for hearing protection.

5. Conducting hearing tests

Annual hearing tests are essential to preventing noise-induced hearing loss for employees who work in a noisy environment.

The tests can give the employer a better understanding of dangers in the workplace, how to help prevent hearing loss and how to improve prevention programs and safety measures.

However, employees can detect early signs of hearing loss caused in the workplace, any changes in their hearing ability can be managed and solutions can be provided when necessary.

Does WorkSafe BC cover hearing loss in the workplace?

If you or an employee has noise-induced hearing loss from their work environment, you or they are eligible to claim workers’ compensation as long as it’s caused by exposure to noise at work.

For a claim to be accepted by WSB:

  • Must have a medical diagnosis of hearing loss due to noise
  • Work must have involved work exposure to noise levels averaged above 85 dBA for 8 or more hours per day for at least two years
  • There must be no evidence of your hearing loss relating to other causes

WSB also offers compensation for other cases as each situation is unique, but those suffering from noise-induced hearing loss in the workplace can receive support from WSB.

Finding a trained practitioner who can help you navigate the tricky situation of protecting your own hearing or your employee’s hearing while working in a noisy environment is important.

Hearing professionals at NexGen Hearing are dedicated to improving your experience and quality of life by seeking to understand each individual’s unique situation, sound environment and hearing abilities.

With personalized recommendations and hearing services, they can help you learn the best ways to protect yourself or your team members.

To learn more about NexGen Hearing and find a clinic near you, click here.


Getting Online

About 71 percent of seniors are online every day. Of those who are online, their main reason is to stay connected with family and friends. Whether it’s joining forums or sharing photos and stories with loved ones, social media and email allows seniors with limited mobility the opportunity to interact with others. If you’re interested in getting online but don’t know where to start, community centres and local senior groups often have programs to teach seniors about the internet and how to participate in online communities. Spending time with others benefits our mental and emotional health. It is important as we age to continue to stay socially connected to friends and loved ones.

Impact of Gambling Advertising

According to a recent study* in the National Library of Medicine, people with gambling problems report more exposure to and impact from gambling advertising. The study revealed that problem gambling was associated with increased perceived advertising impact on gambling involvement and awareness of gambling. It also revealed that internet advertising was the strongest predictor of perceived advertising impact on gambling involvement and TV advertising was the strongest predictor of advertising impact on knowledge of gambling forms, operators and awareness of gambling. If you need support, we are here. (*Relationships Between Exposure to Different Gambling Advertising Types, Advertising Impact and Problem Gambling)

Treating Heat-Related Health Problems

Summer is here and so is the heat! While many people enjoy the hot weather, it’s important to be proactive and safe when the temperature starts to rise. Some common heat-related issues include: 1) Dehydration – weakness, headache, fainting. Drink more water and electrolytes. 2) Heat stroke – body temperature of 40°C or higher, fast pulse, hot and dry skin. Cool down with shade/AC and water. Seek medical attention. 3) Heat exhaustion – heavy sweating, weakness, nausea. Cool down with shade/AC and drink plenty of fluids. 4) Heat syncope – fainting caused by high temperatures. Lie down with feet up. Drink plenty of water.