As a basketball referee in his spare time, Nathan Williams thought the whistles were unnecessarily loud.
At one all-day high school tournament, he wore a dosimeter that measured his noise exposure. The tournament “maxed out the device,” Williams said.
In conversation, his fellow officials joked about their hearing loss, sometimes known as referee’s ear. Williams, then a graduate student in audiology, did not see the humor.
A study recently done by Williams and his professor Gregory Flamme shows that referees were much more likely to report symptoms of ringing in the ears and trouble hearing than people of the same age in the general population.
Red wine and red grapes contain resveratrol, a substance which appears to protect against hearing loss and cognitive decline, researchers from the Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, reported in Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery.
In an animal experiment, the scientists found that laboratory rats would suffer less from the long-term effects of noise-induced hearing loss if they consumed resveratrol before listening to extended periods of loud noise.
Reading may seem like a visual skill, but according to new research on dyslexia, children who excel at reading tend to be all ears.Their brains process the sounds of speech in a more consistent way than those who struggle to read, scientists at Northwestern University in Chicago have found.
In a study published in February in the Journal of Neuroscience, researchers recorded the brainwaves of 100 children with normal hearing, aged six to 13. Using scalp electrodes, they measured the children’s neural responses as they listened to the syllables “ba” and “ga.”
The brainwaves of dyslexic children showed erratic patterns, indicating the children had difficulty encoding the sounds, said the study’s co-author, Nina Kraus, a professor of neurobiology, physiology and communication at Northwestern University.
This deficit in the brain’s ability to recall speech sounds “may be a biological marker of dyslexia,” she said.