Sam Bauman: A guide to hearing systems and balance problems |

Sam Bauman: A guide to hearing systems and balance problems

Sam Bauman
Mayo Clinic’s “Hearing and Balance”

I receive many ads for books, most of which I ignore. But when I got the offer of the Mayo Clinic’s “Hearing and Balance” I shelled out $32 for a copy. And it is well worth it as I now have a pretty solid idea of the complex structure of our hearing system as well as how we use it for balance every day. Christopher Bauch is the editor and he does a fine job of explaining the delicate structure of our hearing system from outer ear and plunging deeper.

He starts out by explaining just how we hear and the kinds of hearing losses.

From there he looks at hearing exams and how to get them and how to read them.

He moves on to how to read the exams of both the outer and inner ear and causes of hearing loss. He touches on tinnitus, a ringing in the ears that is a big problem.

He explains the management of hearing loss and living with the problems.

He also looks at hearing aids, how they work, styles and how to shop for them. (I wish I had read this section before letting the VA select and poorly explain the many aspects of wireless hearing aids and the wide expansion of use.)

The process of cochlear implanting of aids is extensive and can be costly. (I don’t think I would have been interested in the surgical operation.)

In Chapter 8 he touches on caption telephones (which I have used and found them helpful in critical moments. These caption phone can be had at no cost except for installation and phone line.)

The last chapter is on balance and how it is governed by the hearing system. My career as a skiing instructor could have lasted many more years and I would be better ready for moments of poor balance now.

I can highly recommend this book to anyone with hearing or balance problems. I’ll keep my copy even though I can’t expense account it, wishing that I had read it years ago.

Good weekend for moviegoers

At the movies, playing is “Ghost in the Shell,” in which Scarlett Johansson plays a cyborg with a soul, and “The Zookeeper’s Wife,” the true story of a couple who sheltered Jews during the Holocaust.

Have not seen either but “Ghost” has been getting heavy promotional play so will report on it next week.

Also playing is the movie about an ape the size of a skyscraper of computer-generated images, which lessens the impact. Hard to fret about the fate of fake images.

Also out is “Beauty and the Beast,” largely a remake of Disney’s 1992 version. It’s well done. The cast includes Emma Watson and Dan Stevens as the titular characters with Luke Evans, Kevin Kline, Josh Gad and Ewan McGregor.

And there’s an excellent sci-fi adventure film “Life,” which details human efforts to create life in space. They succeed too well and the life form there turns out to be a vicious kind of octopus which roams the spaceship. Some of the scenes are pretty horrific, which explains the “R” rating. Don’t take the kids to this one.

Sam Bauman writes about senior affairs, among other things, for the Nevada Appeal.