Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login

I'll be interested to see how this pans out. I have significant hearing loss in both ears from infections as a baby, and the doctors always said it was because the hairs in my cochlea are dead. I was denied a few opportunities when I was younger due to my hearing, and I still can't hear most higher frequency sounds (whistles, some cymbals, smoke detectors, fire alarms...etc). It would be nice to be able to hear what everyone else hears and not have to say "what?" so often.

Though, as a bald man, I've learned not to get too hopeful about scientific advancements in regrowing hairs ;)

Yours is worse than mine but same root cause and probably exacerbated by power tools and loud music (and loud music at a bar called power tools) later on. There's a huge dip in the middle of my hearing range so I can hear the clink-clink-clink of pint glasses in a pub but people speaking to me over it is a struggle.

Yeah, hearing people over background noise is probably the thing that I struggle with the most. It's been a pretty big social hindrance, especially when I was in college. In crowded social areas like bars and restaurants it's very difficult for me to understand what people are saying. As a result, I ended up being the weird guy just sitting there not saying anything all night because I was unable to carry on a conversation. Hearing aids never seemed to help, because they amplified the background noise too.

As someone with full spectrum hearing, a lot of those environments are awful for me too. Just miserable to be practically yelling to be heard and then needing to cup your hand over your ear to make out what they're saying, often just giving up and nodding and hoping that a "nod" response makes sense in the context of whatever they said.

fwiw: I've found it a fair bit easier to hear others with earplugs in (when it's noisy around). especially the concert-goer ones, at least in part since they usually reduce volume less (normal foam ones reduce 30db or so, which is quite a bit).

Me too, but others have problem with hearing me. It's harder to control my own volume and I tend to speak more softly because of the feedback the earplugs create.

That was me, also. I found that a pair of Bose Hearphones helped considerably. You can set them to focus 45 deg in front and cancel noise from behind. Basically, you hear the person you are facing. I've been in some incredibly noisy bar environments, and I find younger people are asking me to repeat, though I can make their speech out pretty well.

I am going to venture and say this is not related to the ear apparatus, but in perception processing. I believe this type of deficit has been associated with ADHD, and other neurodevelopmental disorders/variations.

As someone with attention issues, I've wondered if this contributes to my issues in loud environments. I feel like it's a blend of "your brain is being overwhelmed" and "this place actually sucks for everyone".

AFAIK I don't have any hearing loss. I wouldn't say that I have attention issues but I can't stand distracting environments - I enjoy loud music if it's a concert and that's what I'm there for, but otherwise I can't stand it.

I agree with your assessment. I pretty much don't go to bars because of the suckiness. You can't have a worthwhile conversation, so it's just constant drinking in an oppressive environment.

Yes. Hearing voices in a loud environment means turning the gain down on other sounds and amping the gain on the voices, but if your attention system can less efficiently choose or if your top-down inhibitory systems are inefficient, then comprehension will be difficult.

I actually do have ADHD as well, and this was something that the doctors talked about. They told me that my hearing impairment would make it even more difficult to focus paired with the audio processing issues from ADHD.

That said, even in a quiet setting I have trouble understanding someone if I can't see their face/read their lips.

This. I have fantastic hearing, but I really struggle with this sort of thing due to differences in perception.

It's both. Google on "hidden hearing loss", "cochlear synaptopathy", "central processing disorders", "auditory scene analysis" and "the cocktail party problem".

I'm sure that it could exacerbate things, but in my particular case if you graph my hearing response to various frequencies it looks like a valley or a capital V.

I don’t have hearing loss and this is a challenge for me.

A trick that always worked well for me was to plug my ears. I could discern voices much better that way. Otherwise it just sounded like a speaker being overdriven.

> loud music at a bar called power tools

Please tell me this was a gay bar. If it wasn't, it should have been.

I have some upper range hearing loss that's more or less consistent with my age. I also have tinnitus and ADHD, so I'm interested in the comments about how all these things may be interrelated. I definitely struggle to hear conversations in noisy environments and I always assumed it was high frequency hearing loss, but maybe the ADHD is part of it as well.

>Please tell me this was a gay bar. If it wasn't, it should have been.

Heh. I thought someone might have had that reaction to the name. From the Houston Press:

Power Tools A long-gone cousin of Numbers, Power Tools is still a sacred name (not to mention a powerful memory) among Houston's industrial/goth/EBM crowd, with the downtown subterranean space now occupied by hip-hop/EDM-heavy Kryptonite. Like a few of its kin, Power Tools is practically un-Google-able, but one flyer we did find (again via Ozone City Outrage) offers a powerful whiff: Butthole Surfers. Mid-August. All ages. CHRIS GRAY

But to answer your question, not a gay bar.

Pity, it's a perfect name. I went to a gay Country Western bar in Houston back in the early 90s and got lost getting there when going through an insanely complex set of highway over passes. It was a fun bar when I finally got there.

Anecdotally, tinnitus sometimes improves with magnesium supplementation.

It takes time though, on the order of several months, to see results.

Here's a review of the studies: https://www.tinnitus.org.uk/tinnitus-and-magnesium

I honestly don't know if you'd be a candidate, however look into Auditory Integration Training and the idea of hearing imbalances; ear infections are a known cause of creating imbalances, which can lead to hyper- and hypo-sensitivity to sound, and specific frequencies even. There's a book available on Amazon called "Hearing Equals Behaviour: Updated and Expanded" that has original book in it as well. I first did AIT in my early 20s and only after doing it, within a day or two a hypersensitivity to sound I had diminished - which then allowed the resolution/refinement of feeling to return properly to my physical body, touch sensory - to which the hypersensitivity to sound caused a hyposensitivity to touch for me. All kinds of possible and strange ways the brain and mind can break as a way to cope - and especially as a baby your brain development is much more rapid, so disruptions to the normal evolution of different sensory development can of course have more severe or marked symptoms.

I wrote a reply where I suggested people look into Auditory Integration Training for either themselves or their children who they said had certain autistic characteristics. Here's the thread for that: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=13657725 - and in particular someone asked to hear about my own experience with it, to which I replied here: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=13657973

I think I would benefit from this sort of technique. Do you know of any available tools or audio resources that implement it? Your comment about frequency decibel imbalances is the most concrete information I've been able to find on the topic, so thank you.

Every aspect of the protocol is important including the sound equipment used. Can you let me know what your goal is relating to your questions so I can try to better/more specifically answer? If you're wanting to see if AIT would help you then the first step is finding an audiologist who knows the protocol to check for hearing imbalances, or worse case scenario sharing the how-to guide for it with them - whether they will learn it and do it for you is another question, why it's easier to find an audiologist who already offers it; searching for "auditory integration training + your city/area" and/or "berard ait + your city name/area" is likely the quickest route.

Regrowing literal hair follicles is seemingly more difficult as they are each small, complex organ attached to a muscle (arrector pili) and they become damaged by fibrosis from the inflammatory process of hair loss.

It seems trivial but it is actually a monumentally complex problem to address

Lots of very rich men who were balding now have hair. Treatments are out there but I think they must be very expensive. See Elon Musk

Lewis Hamilton has had an impressive regrowth. He even gets his styled into cornrows and stuff like that, so the new hair is definitely in there firmly if it can withstand that type of thing. I'm curious as to what he had done, transplant or some kind of other treatments.

I'm interested to hear more.

Applications are open for YC Winter 2020

Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact