Welcome to the Beltone Blog. I’m John Cariola, Au. D. I’ve never written a blog before, and hadn’t really planned on one, until my colleagues here at Beltone asked me to host the Beltone Blog. Because I am an audiologist, with years of experience helping people with hearing loss, and years working in the hearing care industry, they thought I could share words of wisdom on different topics pertaining to hearing. In other words, I was coaxed into it by flattery. Years, yes, I have had many of them. I was born in 1957 which puts me in the youngest group of Baby Boomers. Not that this means a whole lot, but I’ve always thought it was cool that I entered the universe at the same time as the iconic ’57 Chevy. I grew up, like many of my peers, witnessing the British Invasion of The Beatles, The Who, The Kinks etc. Which means I started out life with sound, really loud sound—and sound has remained extremely important to me. I grew up in the northern suburbs of Chicago. I received my master’s degree in Audiology from Northwestern University in 1983, and worked as a clinical audiologist, and hearing aid dispensing audiologist, for the first 10 or so years after graduate school. Along the way, I returned to school to get an MBA, and ultimately moved into a career in Product Management within the hearing industry. My Product Manager positions put me on teams with extremely smart individuals dedicated to designing hearing instruments that would dramatically improve the lives of people with hearing impairment. Finally, being a glutton for punishment (or knowledge), I went back to school one more time for my Doctor of Audiology degree (Au.D.), which I completed in 2008. Hopefully, you’ll enjoy the discussions we have here about hearing care, hearing loss and hearing aids. This blog is meant to be interactive, so please comment or ask questions. If there are any topics of particular interest, simply email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org.