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Good News , Bad News

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Thursday, April 11, 2013

I went through my yearly mine safety training session yesterday. While 99% of what happened is of no real interest here, I do get a free yearly screening and hearing check and then in another year or so I will probably also get a respritory exam to compare against my baseline to make sure I am not getting a lung condition from all of the things associated with mining. Being on an outside crew minimizes this aspect alot so no worries there.

The good news:

My blood work is fantastic!
Total Cholesterol: 138
HDL: 41
LDL: 75
Triglycerides: 108
Glucose: 97
Total Cholesterol / HDL ratio 3.3

Wow, that was great :) We have a tendency to love the externals of weight loss like we love cars... we love the polish, the clean interior, creature comforts and the new car smell BUT it's what's going on under the hood is what matters in the long run.

So far, my engine is running fine, the oil says so :)

Now for the bad news...

My hearing.

I have seen the charts over the last 5 years and there has been a degradation in my hearing, especially in my right ear. This time it was enough that the nurse told me to stay in the room after everyone else exited. There was real concern and I was rescheduled for a more detailed exam in another week.

I have know this all along but have lived in denial.

I have a hard time hearing conversation above certain conflicting noises like running water in the bathroom. I frustrate people sometimes when on the phone. Im right handed and hold it up to my compromised ear (right) and you know how cell phones get.. can you hear me now? then add in the loss.

I have to switch ears which is awkward.

I'm not hard of hearing yet , not by a long shot, but this is a serious wake up call for me.

After years of being in the military and working the flightline in the '80s, shooting, loud head banging music, and industrial exposure, it has finally begun to catch up with me.

Before I head to work, I wanted to toss this out there... most of us workout while plugged into our MP3 players, or we cannot conceive of running without music because it is like an IV drip of our favorite motivational drug. I would ask you to reconsider before you wind up like me. We love to shrug stuff like this off but sooner or later the reaper will call. Too loud is always a few notches higher that what WE play it at right? Or is it that we have grown so used to a certain level that it takes an extra boost to get the extra "thump" we need to push us down the road a little further.

You know what I'm talking about... don't shrug and play innocent.

Think about it, that's all I'm asking.

What good is it if, when you reach your goals, you cant hear your grandkids, or leaves crunching in the Fall?

Consider and be wise.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Glad you're doing great health wise. Good advise on your hearing.
    1204 days ago
    1204 days ago
    Great numbers!
    Well you'll hopefully be able tohearsome.
    Best thing to see them!
    1205 days ago
  • v SHIRLEYB62
    I too have noticed that my hearing is not what it used to be. I am guilty of cranking up the music on my MP3 player when I jog on the tread mill but I am going to have to turn it down a notch. Congrats on you good news and thanks for the heads up on the volume issue.
    1205 days ago
    Awesome numbers! Keep it up!
    1205 days ago
    wise advice.

    1205 days ago
  • v DJSHIP46
    Congrats!!! Take care of those ears :)
    1205 days ago
  • v LOPEYP
    Great numbers! emoticon
    1205 days ago
    1205 days ago
  • v KITT52
    emoticon keep up the great job
    1205 days ago
  • v LINDAKAY228
    Glad most of it went so well. I'm sorry about the hearing loss. I'm 58 and have noticed some changes in my hearing for about 10 or 12 years. Not real serious yet but like you, background noises make it harder for me to hear people talk, or if they have a tendency to talk low it sounds all jumbled to me. My mom (who passed away 4 years ago) was in a wheelchair when we would go out to the store or things like that the last few years of her life. I'd be pushing her through Walmart (our major store in this small town LOL) and so I was behind her and she was facing away from me. She'd be talking to me and sometimes I would have trouble hearing here, especially if they were talking on loudspeaker at the same time or other background noise. She'd get irritated with me because she'd have to repeat things. (She was much worse with her hearing and I always had to repeat things for her LOL). She didn't understand it because I was "young" in her eyes. But I do know what you mean. I haven't work in a high noise situation, but did blare the music when younger. I still use headphone but 10 years ago I hardly ever did because I wasn't out running or walking or trying to be healthy like the past 5 years. Anyway, it worries me about long term but also to some degree I accept it now as the fact that I am getting older and there are changes. Like memory isn't quite as good as it used to be either ha ha.
    1205 days ago
    I'm so happy for you that your bloodwork is good, and so concerned for your hearing. Take all the precautions you can!

    I'm sharing your blog with my husband who plays his ipod way, WAY too loud when he's working out.

    Thank you.

    1205 days ago
  • v IDICEM
    Congrats on the excellent blood work! And thanks for the reminder on the dangers of personal audio devices. We all need to keep that in mind.
    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1205 days ago
  • v MOMMY445
    i agree, your numbers were amazing! i will definitely not take my hearing for granted. have a wonderful day!
    1205 days ago
  • v COOKIE_AT_51
    Great news about the bloodwork ... emoticon Thank you for bringing the hearing loss to my attention, I think we take it for granted and this was an eye opener.
    1205 days ago
    emoticon emoticon
    1205 days ago
    great new on the blood work sorry about the hearing take care
    1205 days ago
    Great news about the Numba's... That's awesome! Sorry to hear about the hearing thing. I too can't hear over the fan, or the running water in the bathroom (drives my husband crazy)... but I never knew that it was a hearing problem, just thought that it was the way I was wired, so thank you for sharing!

    All the Best,

    1205 days ago
  • v NEPTUNE1939
    1205 days ago
    thanks for the reminder!
    1205 days ago
    Good counsel. The 20 and 30 are much more likely to have hearing loss because of the loudness factor of their music. can give you good ideas on hearing conservation. They have a program referred to as "earbuds" where they talk hearing health. You are not alone and you are wise to get this addressed now! Congrats on the rest of your report!
    1205 days ago
    Congratulations on your blood work. At the place I used to work at many of the old timers wore hearing aids due to the loud machinery. There was one safety meeting where a hearing loss company gave a presentation that was very effective at explaining what it was like to live with hearing loss. I will never forget it and I wish more of our young people could be warned of the dangers of loud noises.

    emoticon emoticon
    1205 days ago
  • v ROBB1N
    At least you found out before it was too late.
    1205 days ago
  • v SHERYLP461
    Thanks & congrats on the blood work
    1205 days ago
    congrats on the good numbers...sorry about the hearing problem.
    thanks for posting this important blog

    I've been surrounded by folks who pump up the volume and I think it not only affects your hearing ...but also nerves in general. I feel more edgy when I have to be exposed to loud noise for extended periods vs feel more calm when I'm in a more quiet environment. And that kind of stress also makes me eat more. Being over stimulated in any of our senses disturbs our body on the whole.

    best wishes for a positive resolution
    1205 days ago
  • v NCSUE0514
    Glad to hear about the good news. Hopefully there will be more good news on the "bad news" front, though.
    1205 days ago
    im glad to hear your healthy..... emoticon
    1205 days ago
  • v PHOENIX1949
    Good to stay on top of health issues even if they aren't quite what we would like.
    1205 days ago
    Ab So Lutely. I learned very early on to always wear hearing protection on the production floor, and eventually it was my turn to make it available to the other employees.

    Don't forget the wrap around safety glasses too. It was essential in the foundry, but even a good idea just outdoors. Keep that dirt out.
    Some things are worth being able to hear and see. emoticon
    1205 days ago
  • v CM_GARDNER78
    I have the same problem - I had it tested a few years ago and I have permanent hearing loss. Nothing they could do about it right now, but I will need hearing aids later on! Good thing to get it checked instead of struggling to hear what's going on!
    1205 days ago
    Your blood work numbers are awesome! Keep it up!

    The hearing loss is sad. I know what you mean about the noise we put into our ears. While you can, get screened again, and see what coverage you have for a hearing aid for that ear. Don't put it off. It'll make all the difference in the world!!
    1205 days ago
    Overall, I think you are doing great!!! Yes, hearing loss is a hard one to accept, but look at the rest of your screening went well!
    1205 days ago
  • v LINDAK25
    Great blood work! Sorry about the hearing loss--good advice!
    1205 days ago
  • v DALID414
    Thanks for the advice. I don't like wearing anything in my ears, they're tiny and everything irritates them.
    1205 days ago
  • v JUNEAU2010
    Words of wisdom to be sure. My dad lost hearing in one ear from Army service and I know young people who have hearing loss due to music playing too loudly.
    1205 days ago
    Professional hazards... my sister the music teacher wears hearing aids now... but part of it is heredity and part hazards of the job (percussion side)... they can do some pretty amazing things these days, so take heart. In her case they had to fine tune quite a bit because of the electronic tuning pure 440 A... and the device trying to screen out artificial noise...

    But once adjusted and customized? Golden!
    1205 days ago
    So sorry. I have a father and brother - pilots and a sister-in-law - stewardess whose hearing was damaged - evidently due to occupational hazards like the several you describe apart from the evident but kept in silence (to be sure lavishly paid for silence) damage incurred by all hi-tech appliances to be used by or even more IN the ear. Glad to hear you've done with your phase of denial and grasped the extreme seriousness of the problem. I wouldn't like to enter in details about all the dire consequences of hearing loss which (deafness) is second only to sight loss. Take all measures required and make sure to get all the help available to discontinue further adverse development. Good luck and emoticon
    1205 days ago
    I run with mine in but keep it low not just for my hearing but I also want to be able to hear things around me cars, bad people, you never know and as a female I think it is important to be alert when jogging alone.
    1205 days ago
    I know what you mean. Abusing our bodies in ANY way always has a price in the end. Thanks for the reminder/warning. And congrats on your blood work!
    1205 days ago
    My husband has hearing loss directly related to his job as an air traffic controller. emoticon

    I will think about what you said and I'm going pay attention to the times I use earphones and music. I'd rather not hear a song very well now than to not hear sounds later.
    1205 days ago
  • v _BABE_
    Congrats on the great numbers in your bloodwork.

    Thanks for the reminder that our hearing is a precious thing and we need to take care of ourselves.
    1205 days ago
    Great advice -- thank you! And you are doing an awesome job!! Terrific numbers!!!!
    1205 days ago
  • v _JODI404
    emoticon on your *AWESOME* bloodwork numbers!! Quite impressive!! That really does give a great indication of your true health.

    Sorry about your hearing. I think it is great that you immediately think how to get the message out to help others from going down that same path! I feel the same way about tanning now that I have had a skin cancer. The damages we can do in our youth!!

    1205 days ago
  • v 4CYNDI
    Great numbers on your blood work. On the hearing, yeah that's tough. I'm sure they will find a way to help you combat this too. My mom now wears hearing aids and I've noticed a little hearing loss (mostly upper ranges but nothing to be concerned about... yet). But the warning is good. I seldom use ear buds but do use headphones. I try to keep the level down.

    Have fun today and good luck with the ear exam.
    1205 days ago
    I like your analogy between the health of a human and that of a motor vehicle. Your good news far outweighs your bad news. I would rather be around for a long time with impaired hearing than a short time with perfect hearing.
    1205 days ago
    reading the comments and your blog makes me think maybe all the pressure I've been feeling in my ears are just the ear buds in too long. I use them to talk on the phone also...iphones come with a head set attched to ear buds. This makes me think about the pressure I've been feeling. Thanks for some thinking to do...
    oh and my son wears hearing aids for low level hearing loss and he has found them to be really good for that. And they can make them so much better now. Think about it. It can't hurt.
    1205 days ago
  • v 123ELAINE456
    That is Awesome on your Lab Work. Sorry to hear about the right Ear Hearing Loss. I hope they have something to help You with it. God Blessings to Everyone. Have a Marvelous Day. Take Care.
    1205 days ago
    emoticon on your lab results. That is awesome!

    On the hearing subject... I could not agree with you more. I am not a headphones kind of gal. They bother my ears too much. But I do worry about my kids. They always seem to be plugged in and I wonder what that is going to do to their hearing. Maybe I should have them read this blog???
    1205 days ago
  • v SEATTLE9
    Congratulations on the good news - these are important measurements!

    1205 days ago

    Hehe, sorry about the hearing loss and yes, you are right, with the explosion of personal audio devices, I think there are going to be a lot of younger people with hearing loss. Just today on the bus, a young gal was sitting in front of me with headphones. Her music was so loud, she might as well have had a "boom box" (HA, showing my age!) on the seat with her.

    GREAT stats on your cholesterol, though! WTG!!!!
    1205 days ago
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