Hearing Aid Education

Even though hearing is one of our most important senses, most people don't actually know very much about it. That extends to how well people understand hearing aids, too. We want to make sure that you are educated on hearing and your hearing loss so that you can make decisions about your own hearing treatment. We've gathered frequently asked questions and answers to help you know what you can expect from your hearing aids and how you can get the most out of them.

Hearing Loss Questions & Answers

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What are the different kinds of hearing loss?

Not all hearing loss can be treated with hearing aids, so there's a possibility that we may have to recommend that you go see a medical professional for additional help. However, if your hearing loss can be treated with hearing aids, we have the experience to program those hearing aids for your specific needs.

  • Conductive hearing loss means sound is blocked (not conducted), often due to earwax, illness, or damage to the eardrum. This usually requires medical intervention.
  • Sensorineural hearing loss refers to damage to your hearing nerve. This hearing loss is permanent, but it can be treated effectively with hearing aids.
  • Mixed hearing loss combines elements of both. If you have mixed hearing loss, we'll recommend that you see a medical professional for the conductive hearing loss and then come see us for hearing aids to treat the remaining sensorineural hearing loss.

Does mild hearing loss need to be treated?

Even with mild hearing loss, you might be surprised by how much you're missing. It's worth trying a demo of hearing aids to see if you can notice a difference. An advantage to catching hearing loss earlier is that you won't risk losing the ability to understand sounds. If you go a long time without hearing certain sounds, your brain may stop being able to process what those sounds are. That can make understanding a challenge even if you do eventually get hearing loss that gives you back the ability to hear those sounds.

Can you treat my tinnitus?

Unfortunately, we can't make your tinnitus go away with hearing aids. However, many people find that wearing hearing aids improves their experience and reduces how noticeable the tinnitus is.

Hearing Aids Questions & Answers

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How do hearing aids work?

You might think that hearing aids are nothing more than amplification devices, but they do a lot more than just turning up the volume. There are several components to a hearing aid: a microphone, the programmable computer chip, an amplifier, and a speaker. The microphone picks up sound, which then is sent to the "brain" of your hearing aid to be processed. This step can do many things to help you better understand what you're about to hear, including filtering out some background noise. Then the sound is sent to the amplifier, which makes it louder before transmitting it through the speaker into your inner ear.

Why do hearing aids cost so much?

Hearing aids aren't just volume-boosters. They're miniature computers with complex processing that helps you hear and understand the world around you. When you buy hearing aids, you're getting a lot of power for your money. It's also important to realize that hearing aids will last you for years, so it's a good investment in staying connected and getting more out of life for years to come.

What's it like wearing hearing aids for the first time?

It can be a bit overwhelming at first, so there may be an adjustment period. If you have mild hearing loss and it hasn't been a problem for very long, you might just be able to put in your hearing aids and walk out of our office without any challenges. But for some people it can be more difficult. If that's you, don't panic — it's perfectly normal. Remember that you are hearing things for the first time in a long time. The world may seem very loud to you, and you might notice things like the refrigerator or air conditioner humming. Our best advice if this happens to you is to be patient and make sure you wear your hearing aids. Eventually, you will adjust, and you'll be glad you did. You may need to start wearing them for just a couple hours a day and step your way up until you're wearing them all day. We also recommend programs like reading out loud to yourself for 10 minutes a day or getting someone else to read out loud. Keep working through it, and let us know if it isn't getting better so we can help you.

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