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Hearing loss often occurs so gradually that the individual may not be aware of the problem. Early signs of hearing loss includes
- Turning the TV or radio volume louder than other family members prefer
- Difficulty understanding speech in a background noise
- Difficulty hearing in meetings
- Having things repeated frequently
If you suspect that you have a hearing loss, consult with an Audiologist. The Audiologist will identify, diagnose, treat and manage your hearing loss.
The Audiologist will perform a thorough assessment of the hearing mechanism, beginning with a history interview.
- Tympanometry to asses the status of the middle ear
- Pure tone thresholds by air conduction and often by bone conduction to determine the degree and type of hearing loss
The results of the audilogical evaluation are a critical factor in helping to determine the need for hearing aids, type of hearing aids and whether one or two sises are needed. The audiologist will review the results of your evaluation and provide various options and recommendations for remediation.
Hearing aids are available in a variety of sizes and shapes, from instruments that fit behind the ear to instruments that totally fit within the ear canal and are minimally visible. Digital and programmable hearing aids, which are adjusted via a computer connection, provide the more flexibility, allowing the audiologist to custom fit the response of the device to a specific hearing loss. Digital hearing aids can be modified if hearing changes or as your listening needs change. Your audiologist will help you choose the best instrument according to your needs and your budget.