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Protect Your Hearing for a Healthier Brain

By | Hearing Loss | No Comments

There are many reasons to protect your hearing. By taking steps to avoid hearing loss, you can remain engaged in your community and continue living life to the fullest as you age. But did you know that protecting your hearing also leads to a healthier brain?

According to a recent Lancet study cited by the The New York Times, untreated hearing loss is the largest preventable risk factor for developing dementia. Protecting your hearing — or treating your hearing loss, if you already have it — can reduce incidences of dementia by 9%.

That’s higher than other common risk factors for dementia, like smoking and high blood pressure. So how exactly does hearing loss affect your brain as you age?

How Hearing Loss Affects Your Brain

Researchers believe that untreated hearing loss can contribute to dementia for several reasons.

First, untreated hearing loss causes the brain to work much harder to process sound. In other words, the brain becomes fatigued. It can’t perform other cognitive functions at the same level it used to.

Additionally, untreated hearing loss can negatively impact memory. When someone can’t hear clearly, it’s more difficult for them to retain new information. This leads to an under-stimulated memory, which can then “atrophy.”

Finally, untreated hearing loss often leads to social isolation. As people age, a sense of community is very important to overall health and well-being. Community helps people stay active, both physically and mentally.

Let AudioFetch Help You Hear Clearly

At AudioFetch, we’re devoted to helping people with hearing loss or impairment stay connected with the world around them. To help improve your brain health as you age, avoid hearing loss by using hearing protection and AudioFetch assistive listening devices to promote clear sound in your community.

As part of our Happy New Ear campaign, we’re offering 20% off all AudioFetch products for February 2020. Just enter code HAPPYNEWEAR20 at checkout when purchasing a FetchExpress online, or ask for the discount when speaking with us (offer cannot be combined with other offers or discounts).

If you’d like to learn more about how AudioFetch can help you or your customers hear better, contact us today.

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Facts About Hearing Loss [Infographic]

By | Food for thought, Hearing Assistance | No Comments

More than 466 million people worldwide suffer from some type of hearing loss according to the World Health Organization.

Over the next 30 years, that number is expected to nearly double thanks to louder and louder environments, age-related hearing loss, ear and other infections, and the use of ototoxic medicines, which adversely impact the way the inner ear functions.

Check out the infographic below with important facts and stats about hearing loss–how many people worldwide and in the US are affected, which communities are at a higher risk, and growth predictions for the decades ahead.

Hearing Loss Facts - AudioFetch Infographic

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Happy New Ear from AudioFetch

By | Hearing Loss | No Comments

What’s your New Year’s Resolution? At AudioFetch, we’re dedicating 2020 to healthy hearing, so we want to wish you all a Happy New Ear!

According to the World Health Organization, there are over 466 million people worldwide who experience some type of hearing loss or damage. Over the next 30 years, that number is expected to grow to over 900 million.

AudioFetch is dedicated to helping people hear better and creating a more accessible world for people with impaired hearing. With our Happy New Ear campaign, we’re spreading the word about hearing loss and how you can protect your ears — for this year and each new year to come.

Causes of Hearing Loss

Today, noise damage is one of the leading causes of hearing loss. Unlike hearing loss that comes naturally from old age, noise-induced hearing loss can strike at any age.

That’s because our world has become louder than ever. Loud restaurants, bars, concerts, movies, and constant headphone use cause severe damage to our ears over time.

Even if you don’t feel pain or experience ringing in your ears, prolonged exposure to noise levels at or above 85 decibels can cause premature hearing loss.

Hearing Loss Prevention

To prevent hearing loss, limit your exposure to noisy environments. As a general rule of thumb, if you have to shout to be heard, it’s too loud. Use earplugs and take “quiet breaks” by stepping into another room or going outside.

You can also preserve your ears’ health by monitoring your headphone use. When you’re using headphones or earbuds, keep the volume low enough that you can still hear the environment around you and don’t listen for more than an hour at a time.

Protect Your Hearing for a Happy New Ear in 2020

As you set new goals for 2020, plan on becoming more mindful of your hearing. After all, you only get one pair of ears! By taking steps to protect your hearing now, you’ll be able to enjoy clear sound and vibrant music for years to come.

To give your community a Happy New Ear, get 20% off all AudioFetch products for January and February 2020. Just enter code HAPPYNEWEAR20 at checkout (offer cannot be combined with other offers or discounts).

If you’d like to learn more about how AudioFetch can help you or your customers hear more in 2020, contact us!

3 Ways AudioFetch Can Help You #HearMoreTogether

By | Churches, Education, Hearing Assistance, Sports Bars, Stadiums | No Comments

Sound brings communities together. At AudioFetch, our #HearMoreTogether campaign is designed to raise awareness about hearing loss and excessive noise. When you can’t hear what’s going on around you, it can feel very isolating. Our assistive listening devices promote a stronger sense of community by ensuring that everyone can hear more, together.

To help you #HearMoreTogether, we’re giving one lucky community a FetchExpress assistive listening device. To be entered to win, get your community together and post a photo or video on Facebook or Instagram with the hashtag #HearMoreTogether and answer this question in the caption: How would an AudioFetch system help you and your community #HearMoreTogether?

Need some inspiration? Here are 3 ways AudioFetch can help you and your community:

1. Hear Clearly at Houses of Worship

For many people, especially older adults, their primary community is a house of worship. Members come to be inspired by faith and often stay to socialize after the services. That’s why it’s so important for these spaces to be accessible.

If your church, synagogue, or mosque has an aging population that’s experiencing hearing loss, an assistive listening device will help you #HearMoreTogether. These devices also help houses of worship like Chet’s Creek Church use translation services to reach a wider audience.

2. Cut Through the Noise at Arenas and Sports Bars

Whether it’s an arena or a bar, most sporting venues invest in high performance audio, such as a theater sound system. Why not enhance your system with a stadium listening system or sports bar sound system? Although nothing beats the thrill of a cheering crowd, the noise levels at a game can be distracting or even damaging.

With AudioFetch, fans will #HearMoreTogether by plugging into an assistive listening device that cuts through the noise by streaming audio over wifi. Venues like Cavu Brewing use AudioFetch so you can hear the game as clearly as you would at home, while still enjoying the camaraderie of a sports bar. Go team!

3. Listen to Lectures at Universities and Community Schools

Universities and community schools benefit from assistive listening devices and education sound systems, too. After all, it’s hard to learn when you have difficulty hearing. AudioFetch helps students and faculty #HearMoreTogether by incorporating wireless audio streaming into the classroom, lecture hall or auditorium.

Educational institutions such as Barry University use AudioFetch to make their campus accessible to students with hearing loss and hearing impairment. This allows them to make sure all students feel welcome in their community.

#HearMoreTogether with AudioFetch

These are just a few examples of the ways AudioFetch can help your community. Now we want to hear from you! Share your ideas on Facebook or Instagram with hashtag #HearMoreTogether! Learn more about the giveaway here.

If you’d like to learn more about how AudioFetch could help your venue, contact us today!

#HearMoreTogether!

By | General, Hearing Assistance | No Comments

No one should ever have to miss a speech, a touching moment, a sports play, a joke, a conversation, or a good laugh just because they have hearing loss or because it’s simply too noisy where they are listening. Being able to share in moments like these creates community and makes everyone feel included. AudioFetch is innovating solutions in assistive listening, and in 2020 we want to help more communities and loved ones #HearMoreTogether!

You can find AudioFetch devices all over America. Our Signature device has 56 inputs and has been helping patrons in sports bars hear every word of their favorite game, no matter how many TVs might be on. Our FetchExpress is a portable PA system perfect for transmitting single source audio over wifi helping church goers, tour guides and translators ensure their customers never miss a word. AudioFetch is already helping those who have hearing loss feel included and now we want to do even more with the AudioFetch #HearMoreTogether GIVEAWAY!

To kick things off this holiday season we want to gift one lucky community a FetchExpress assistive listening device! Simply post a photo or video of your community with #HearMoreTogether to Facebook or Instagram, and answer this question:

How would an AudioFetch system help you and your community #HearMoreTogether?

Be sure to follow us on either Facebook, Instagram or Twitter to see when we announce the winner on December 24th!

We can’t wait to #HearMoretogether with you!

Official rules: https://www.audiofetch.com/hearmoretogether-giveaway-rules/

Game Day: Should You Watch at The Stadium or a Sports Bar?

By | Sports Bars, Stadiums | No Comments

Fall is finally here! Turning leaves remind us we’ll soon be with loved ones eating pumpkin pie and cheering for our favorite sports team. Whether at home, at a bar or live at the stadium, watching sports in a group has been proven to have important health benefits

“We know that people live longer and recover more quickly from an illness when they have strong cases of social support,” says William Wiener Phd. “If you have a group of people you watch a game with consistently who offer support when you are down, it does lead to longevity and can keep you active and engaged and alive longer.”

Watching sports in a group also keeps your mind active. Research by  the University of Chicago shows that a region of the brain usually associated with planning and controlling actions is activated when fans listen to conversations about their favorite sport. 

Additionally, the reason that we enjoy watching sports in groups is because of our memories.  NPR social science correspondent Shankar Vedantam says, “We connect with sports teams through family, through our parents taking us to ballgames, and that’s why following a sports team feels so intense because it’s tied up in these family loyalties.” 

And none of these benefits even include the fun of putting on the t-shirt of our favorite players and our game-day face paint before meeting up at the local sports bar or heading to the stadium for a tail-gate party. But which is the better location to watch the game? 

Many would answer that question by saying it’s obviously the stadium. The energy of the crowd, the live action, and the opportunity to do “the wave,” among other things, make attending a live sporting event exhilarating. 

Stadiums are exciting, but also very noisy. Cheering fans, thundering applause, thumping music, hollering vendors, blaring horns can all make it pretty hard to hear the play-by-play. Unless the stadium has an assistive listening solution, you might be better off watching at a bar. With an assistive listening solution for stadiums streaming the play-by-play directly to your smartphone you still get to hear every part of the game no matter how rowdy it gets.  

However, watching your favorite sports team with a group of friends (or even strangers) at a local sports bar is like your own private viewing party. Watching on a TV gives you the advantage of seeing replays and gives you the ideal bird’s-eye view of the action. 

But what happens when there are multiple games on multiple televisions at once? 

Having the volume up on all them would be awful. With the sound off, you miss even more than you might at a stadium, unless the bar has an audio streaming solution that streams audio directly to your device. With a local audio streaming solution you can choose which TV to tune into using the app that receives the sound from a transmitter connected to each of the televisions. So you can have your beer and drink it, too. 

The whole point of getting together for a game is to actually watch the action and hear it even among the noise and excitement of everyone around you.  With an assistive listening device from AudioFetch that streams the game audio to your smartphone or tablet, you’ll get all the health benefits of watching the game in a group, and you won’t miss a single play, replay or stat. To learn more, contact us today!

How to Listen to TV at Life Time Fitness with AudioFetch

By | Fitness Centers | No Comments

You’ve just finished all the Halloween candy, and now here comes Thanksgiving with that big turkey dinner and all those tempting desserts.  After that, you face the stress of getting ready for Christmas. What do you get for Aunt Edna and Uncle George?  

There’s food everywhere this time of year.  Brownies on every reception desk, triple layer dip in the office kitchen, the office party, private parties and Christmas dinner. The holidays can be packed with calories and stress, but our client Life Time Fitness, knows that the number one way to relieve stress is exercise. It lowers stress hormones, improves your ability to sleep, and boosts your sense of competence. 

Listening to music can be soothing and stress-relieving, and it lowers blood pressure. Watching your favorite sitcom or sports team on television can be a great way to pass the time on an elliptical or as a distraction between weight lifting sets (and watching sports is good for your health, too). Not only will you be entertained, but you can set your workout time limit by the length of the program. 

Many national gyms have equipment with small TVs mounted on them – Stair Masters, ARC Trainer, spin bikes, treadmills, ellipticals – so members can watch TV when they use those machines. Eventually though, members move to the gym floor or a different machine, and then their only option is to read closed captioning, or listen to music on their own device with earbuds. What happens when they want to hear what’s on the television at the gym? Even if they could turn it up, they’d still have to deal with all the noise of everyone working out all around them. 

When members of Life Time Fitness wanted to figure out how to watch TV at the gym, the gym decided to install AudioFetch, a gym audio streaming solution. AudioFetch allows members of Life Time Fitness to listen and watch the television program of their choice simply by tuning in via the AudioFetch app on their device. 

AudioFetch is able to broadcast up to 512 inputs of wireless audio options and the no-hassle phone app is simple to use. AudioFetch transmits the audio over local WiFi, so every member of Life Time Fitness clubs offering this amenity can hear what they want wherever they are in the facility. And Life Time Fitness is able to customize the AudioFetch app to match their branding and include important promotions, ads and specials, further enhancing the gym members’ experience and driving more sales. 

If you’d like to learn more about how AudioFetch can improve the experience of your gym or fitness center’s members, contact us today for more information.

Why You’ll Love Traveling by Train

By | Travel | No Comments

Many of us are more than familiar with the hassles of air travel. Having to arrive 2 hours early,  baggage limits, terrible food, and airline travel isn’t exactly a bargain. What if you could avoid all those headaches and still get where you wanted to go at the same for a lower price? That’s just one of the great reasons why train travel could be a great option. Here are 3 more reasons train travel could be a part of your next vacation or work trip.

LOW STRESS:

Train travel is relaxing travel. To start, you don’t have to arrive until about a half hour before the train is due to depart. Since there’s no TSA there won’t be any lines to wait in or x-ray machines.  Not only that, but a porter will be there to help you load your luggage. Amtrak allows you to bring two carry-ons and two checked bags, so no need to worry about cramming everything into that one carry on like you do when you fly.  On a train, you’ll never contend with the fasten seatbelt sign. When you want to stretch your legs you can walk the aisle without having to maneuver around a cart. 

THE FOOD

On some trains, there could be a cart that serves hot drinks and snacks. However, when you are truly ready for a meal, you don’t have to wait for a flight attendant to come by with a sandwich and grapes. Instead, you go to the dining car and order from a menu at a proper table. You won’t be trying not to elbow elbow your seatmate and you might even make new friends.  The food is cooked right there on the train by a chef and is generally very good. The best part is, if you happen to spill something all over yourself, you can take a shower. 

COMFORT

In addition to amenities like full bathrooms with showers, many trains offer roomy seats and overnight compartments where you can relax in privacy. Just for comparison, your seat in Economy Class on any airline is 17-1/2 inches wide and the seat in front of you is about 8 inches away from the edge of your seat. Your seat on a train is 20-1/2 inches wide and it reclines. Plus, when it reclines a leg rest pops up.  You can sleep in your seat, read, meet other travelers, or just look out the large windows and watch the countryside pass by.  Since you aren’t flying over it or zooming past it like you would in a car, a train is the perfect way to see and learn about the places you are traveling through. 

ENTERTAINMENT

Train travel is for the true adventurer.  For people who like to explore, learn new things, and meet new people.  There are no movies or television, but if you really, really must have digital entertainment, bring along your tablet because trains generally have wifi.  But the best part of train travel is seeing something new, and if the train offers local streaming of audio over their WiFi, you can use your own device to learn about what you are seeing through the window.  And talk to your family or your seatmates about it.  

If you’re thinking about traveling this fall, consider making it a train trip. It is sure to be an unforgettable experience. 

Audio Solutions to Help Your House of Worship

By | Churches, Hearing Assistance | No Comments

Baby boomers represent about one-quarter of the American population and as they age, they may begin to experience hearing loss.  Along with that, approximately 5% of the total population experiences some type of hearing disability.  This makes it important for any religious organization to consider and anticipate their needs and give consideration to the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Many houses of worship are looking for ways to leverage technology to make hearing assistance simpler, more effective, and less costly.  

For decades, houses of worship have used inductive loop systems to assist the hearing impaired, but these systems are cumbersome, expensive and still require the use of a hearing aid which many people find embarrassing. Recent developments in hearing assistive technology however, can be a great solution both for houses of worship with tight budgets to assist parishioners experiencing hearing loss.  Some devices use BlueTooth technology, which allows the pairing of cell phones and hearing aids to assist the congregation in hearing the service directly without having to use a headset.  

Audio streaming solutions that use built in WiFi technology work similarly to BlueTooth. These assisted listening solutions for churches allow listeners to hear the service via an app on their own device (phone or tablet) using their own earbuds or headset which can be great for those who do not to wear a hearing aid but still need the audio boosted. By having guests bring their own device to use and listen, houses of worship can save the time and money that would otherwise be spent on upkeep of other audio solutions. For those who cannot afford a smartphone or iPad, some houses of worship have been sourcing inexpensive smartphones or asking parishioners to donate their old phones and iPads.  And, of course, people can borrow a phone during the service or share with another parishioner. 

Not only can a local audio streaming system allow your hearing impaired members to hear the service better, it also opens doors for other creative uses like offering translation services or creating an outdoor movie fundraiser. 

If you’d like more information on how an audio solution that streams over wifi could help transform your house of worship, contact us today. 

Making Your School Safer and More Inclusive

By | Uncategorized | No Comments

It’s back to school time, and that means new school supplies, new clothes, new routines (and maybe a bit more quiet around the house). Parents will be dropping their children off at school, hoping that they will be learning in a physically and emotionally safe, and caring environment. It’s time for your school to start planning everything from field trips to new equipment and regulations. School budgets can be tight so it’s important to have affordable tech solutions that are easy to install and maintain. A wireless streaming device can have multiple uses for schools saving them money, time and perhaps even lives. 

Here are three ways an education audio streaming system could improve your school.

ACTIVE DANGER DRILLS

Parents and children have a right to expect that they are safe in school. Unfortunately, school safety has become an increasingly dominant factor in our educational institutions, and along with fire drills, schools now hold “active danger” drills

In an active danger drill, there can be a lot of noise and teachers need to hear what the issue is (fire, tornado, a crime, etc.) and get instructions. As part of any emergency procedure, it is of utmost importance that the administration and first responders are able to communicate directly and quietly with teachers. 

Of course, one way to do this is through text message, but this can become an organizational hassle as many carriers limit the amount of phone numbers that can be included in one text. A faster and clearer way to communicate with teachers and staff is by streaming local audio over WiFi directly to their smart device. This way, all teachers are alerted at one time and can receive real-time instructions about the situation. 

FIELD TRIPS

While streaming audio may, hopefully, never be used in an emergency, it has further safety use on field trips. Using a personal PA system for teachers, students can be communicated with during travel or any time. Students wandering off or lagging behind can hear instructions about where to find the group. And if the group is inside a museum, library, or other quiet zone, this type of communication keeps the field trip from being distracting to others.

STUDENTS WITH HEARING LOSS

Each year many schools test students for hearing loss. Children may be born with hearing loss or it may develop from infection, disease or injury. Those children diagnosed with hearing loss need accommodations and assistance in hearing teachers, computer, and video lessons. For some children, being placed in the front row of the classroom may be enough to enable them to overcome minor hearing loss for learning. 

However, for others, an audio streaming assistive listening device would be helpful. Streaming audio can be offered to any child via iPad, computer or cell phone – thus overcoming extraneous distractions and noise – to enable the student to hear the teacher or recorded lessons. Not only that, it can also be less embarrassing for the student than wearing a hearing aid.

There are even more creative ways an audio streaming solution could improve your school. If you’re interested in learning more, contact us today!