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Questions About My Hearing

How can I recognize hearing problems?

More often than not, hearing loss comes on very gradually, with no obvious symptoms, discomfort or pain. In the beginning, family members often learn to adapt to someone’s hearing loss, but over time recognize that something has changed with you. Recognizing the signs of hearing loss can be as simple as answering the following questions:

Yes No Do you often feel you can hear people talking but can’t understand whats being said?

Yes No Do you experience difficulty understanding in a group or crowd?

Yes No Do you experience difficulty understanding on the telephone?

Yes No Have you ever been told that you listen to the television too loud?

Yes No Have you ever been told you missed hearing the phone ring?

Yes No Do you have ringing or buzzing sounds in your ears?

Yes No Do you often ask people to repeat themselves?

Yes No Do you have problems hearing women’s voices or your grandchildren?

If you answered yes to two or more of these questions, you likely are suffering from some form of hearing loss

Are there different types of hearing loss?

Sensorineural: The most common type, it occurs when nerves in the cochlea are damaged and do not properly transmit auditory signals to the brain. This type is typically caused because of age or noise exposure and is very correctable with hearing instruments.

Conductive: Is typically the result of obstructions in the ear such as wax or physiological problems to the mechanics of the eardrum or small bones of the middle ear. In some cases these issues can be treated medically or surgically.

Mixed: A combination of sensorineural and conductive.

Tinnitus: Ringing or buzzing in the ear(s) is often associated with hearing loss. Many individuals suffer from these sounds and it can range from barely noticeable to extremely annoying. 80% of patients who have ringing and wear hearing instruments indicate a significant reduction in the sensation while wearing the devices. 15% of patients indicate that the hearing instruments made noticeable reductions to the ringing sensation, while 5% say there was no measurable benefit. So the vast majority of hearing instrument wearers enjoyed the reduced ringing sensation by wearing their hearing aids daily.

What age should I start testing my hearing?

Hearing loss can occur at any age. Most people with hearing loss are younger than age 65. It is recommended that if you are over the age of 55 and have the signs of hearing loss, you should be tested annually to monitor the progressive nature of hearing loss.

How will this affect my life?

  • Auditory Deprivation occurs when the brain does not receive transmissions because of damage to the cochlea. This ultimately causes the brain to forget how to understand those electrical impulses sent from the cochlea that we interpret as sound.
  • Untreated hearing loss may increase your risk of Alzheimer’s and dementia (Archives of Neurology Feb. 2012)
  • Mild hearing loss linked to brain atrophy in older adults (Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania Aug. 2011)
  • Hearing Loss is twice as common in adults with diabetes (Annals of Internal Medicine July 2008)
  • Intimacy and warmth in family relationships
  • General communication
  • Sense of control over your life
  • Social participation
  • Perception of mental functioning
  • Emotional stability
  • Communication in relationships
  • Depression
  • Personal safety issues

How do hearing instruments work?

The simple answer is hearing instruments have small microcomputers that convert sound into electrical signals. The computer processes the sounds based on a person’s hearing loss and delivers a sound near the persons eardrum based on the prescription needed to help the person hearing more normally.

Will a hearing instrument restore my hearing back to normal?

No, hearing instruments will not restore your hearing to perfect levels. However, they can help increase them to near normal levels with the right treatment and technology. Hearing instruments are designed to let you hear soft sounds that you couldn’t hear before, and prevent loud sounds from becoming uncomfortably loud.

Are inexpensive hearing instruments any good?

These inexpensive models are simply hearing amplifiers that will make everything louder (including all the ambient noises around you). They will not, separate human voices from background noises. Instead inexpensive hearing instruments turn up sounds that make it difficult to hear without turning up sounds you need to hear.

What about loud noises or noisy places?

While no hearing instrument can filter out all background noise, which would actually be unnatural, many new hearing instruments are clinically proven to enhance speech in the presence of background noise.

Is there new hearing instrument technology?

Hearing instruments have experienced a major technological revolution in the last two years. In fact, the most changes in the history hearing instruments have occurred recently. Today’s digital hearing instruments are designed to emphasize speech cues, eliminate feedback or whistling, make understanding in noisy environments easier and more comfortable and even help you hear better on the phone, church or even while watching television.

Is there an adjustment period to wearing hearing instruments?

Most people require some time before becoming acclimated to wearing their hearing instruments. However, you should expect to notice significant benefits right away.

What happens during an examination?

We begin with a simple questionnaire to establish the general hearing history, followed by a visual examination of your ears with our otoscope. You may actually be able to see what our Specialists see on a monitor or television. This examination will reveal obstructions such as wax or other problems that may be affecting your hearing. The Specialist will then perform a series of hearing and speech recognition tests to determine the possible causes and degree of hearing loss that may exist. If a condition requiring medical treatment is detected, you will be referred to an ENT (Ear, Nose, Throat) Specialist for further testing. If there is no medical condition causing the hearing loss, the Specialist will make the best recommendation to you for moving forward.

Our Specialists use an audiometer to conduct the hearing testing in a sound proof testing booth or room. This equipment emits sounds or tones at various frequencies and at differing volumes. The Specialist will notate your responses to the battery of tests, which will ultimately be used to formulate an accurate diagnosis. Each ear is tested separately because sensitivity to sound often differs from one ear to the other.

What if i need a custom fitting?

Since your level of hearing loss is unique to you, each instrument needs to be programmed and fine tuned specifically to your needs and to each ear. During your fitting, the Specialist will place the instruments in your ears and program them to the settings that ensure you are getting the very best results.

When you first try hearing instruments, you will notice sounds that you have not been hearing for some time. These sounds might include things like the refrigerator running, the air conditioner humming, or traffic noise. When your hearing was normal, your brain was conditioned to “tune out” these sounds. Since your brain hasn’t had to tune out these noises during your time with untreated hearing loss, it’s a bit out of practice. As you consistently wear your hearing instruments, your brain will adjust to these noises/sounds and automatically begin to tune them out so that you can enjoy hearing all the sounds you have been missing.

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Member Testimonials
Michelle G.

I wish to express to you my appreciation for improving my hearing aids. My hearing aids now provide me with much better audio and clarity of voice and tone. Please be assured that I will and have recommended your service. Sincerely yours,

Jeremy L.

Just wanted to let you know how much I appreciate your professionalism and personal attention in the weeks since I got my hearing aids. You took the time to explain to me in a way I could understand the physiology of my loss of hearing and show me how we could improve it. I really appreciate your "bedside manner" and helpful assistance. My life has truly gotten better since. Thanks Again,

Brad H.

I couldn't understand what my grandchildren were saying. It was breaking my heart. Now I can understand everything they say. I don't have to ask my wife to repeat everything they say anymore. That is priceless and worth every penny I paid for my hearing aids!

Robert S.

Very knowledgeable staff. I had some concerns when I arrived to consider getting my hearing device. That concern was quickly put to rest. I got answers to all my questions and then some. Customer care is outstanding and ongoing.