Hearing loss can be scary. Let the certified and licensed audiologist at THE HEARING PLACE in Berwick, PA help with your hearing loss questions. For over a decade, we have gained our customer's trust by offering the most comprehensive and caring hearing loss services. Please don't hesitate to ask us any questions - we're here to help!
Here Are Some Frequently Asked Questions About Hearing Loss:
- How can I recognize a hearing problem?
Most of the time hearing loss begins gradually, without discomfort or pain. What's more, family members often learn to adapt to it, without even realizing they are doing it. Here are some questions to ask yourself to determine whether hearing loss is present:
1. Do I often ask people to repeat themselves?
2. Do I have trouble following conversations with more than two people?
3. Do I have difficulty hearing what is said unless I’m facing the speaker?
4. Does it sound like other people are mumbling or slurring their words?
5. Do I struggle to hear in crowded places like restaurants, malls and meeting rooms?
6. Do I have a hard time hearing women or children?
7. Do I prefer the TV or radio volume louder than others?
8. Do I experience ringing or buzzing in my ears?
If you answered “Yes” to 2 or more of these you should consider scheduling an appointment for a hearing evaluation.
- If I had a hearing loss, wouldn't my family doctor have told me?
Only about 13% of physicians routinely screen for hearing loss. Since most people with hearing impairments hear just fine in quiet environments (like your doctor's office), it can be very difficult for your physician to recognize this problem. Only a trained hearing professional can determine the severity of your hearing problem, whether or not you could benefit from a hearing aid, and which type would be best for you.
- What causes hearing loss?
There are several causes. The main ones include excessive noise, infections, genetics, birth defects, infections to the head or ear, aging, and reaction to drugs or cancer treatment.
- Doesn't hearing loss only affect old people?
Hearing loss can occur at any time, at any age. In fact, most people with hearing loss (65%) are younger than age 65! There are six million people in the U.S. ages 18-44 with hearing loss, and around one-and-a-half million are school age.
- Which professions are at most risk for hearing loss?
Some of the highest risk professions include factory workers, construction workers, heavy industry workers, firefighters, police officers, farmers, military personnel, musicians, and entertainment industry professionals.
- What are examples of activities that may be dangerously loud?
These include live music concerts, video arcades, movie theaters, health clubs and aerobic studios, sporting events, motorboats, motorcycles, snowmobiles, and "boom" cars.
- Aren't there operations or medications I can take for hearing loss?
Only 5% of hearing loss in adults can be improved medically or surgically. The vast majority of Americans with hearing loss (95%) are treated with hearing aids.
- Won't wearing a hearing aid make me look old or handicapped?
A lot of people who know they have a hearing loss are too embarrassed or feel they're showing weakness if they acknowledge the problem. While you are no doubt concerned about appearance, others will be much less aware of your hearing aid than you. Most hearing aids are very discreet (keep in mind that hairstyle can also play a role).
Ultimately, an untreated hearing leads to actions like smiling or nodding when you don't understand what's being said and are far more obvious than a hearing aid. Most likely, once you have a hearing aid your quality of life will be so improved that cosmetics won't be as much of an issue for you. In fact, some hearing aids today even come in bright colors, making hearing aids a fashion statement instead of something to hide!
- Exactly how will a hearing aid improve my quality of life?
Receiving treatment for hearing loss can literally transform your life. Research on people with hearing loss and their significant others has shown that hearing aids play a significant factor in a person's social, emotional, psychological and physical well-being.
More specifically, treatment of hearing loss has been shown to improve:
• Communication in relationships
• Intimacy and warmth in family relationships
• Ease in communication
• Earning power
• Sense of control over your life
• Social participation
• Perception of mental functioning
• Emotional stability
When you consider all the benefits of better hearing, you can see that hearing aids hold great potential to positively change your life.
- How do hearing aids work?
At their most basic, hearing aids are microphones that convert sound into electrical signals. An amplifier increases the strength of the signal, then a receiver converts it back to sound and channels it into the ear canal through a small tube or earmold. A battery is necessary to power the hearing aid and to enable amplification. The Hearing Place dispenses hearing aids that are sophisticated, state-of-the-art instruments that require computer programming to adjust to your specific lifestyle and listening environments.
- Will a hearing aid actually restore my hearing?
While no hearing aid (except in cases of very mild hearing loss) can restore your hearing to normal, hearing aids will allow you to hear soft sounds that you couldn't hear before, and will prevent loud sounds from becoming uncomfortably loud for you. Your ability to understand speech will also be improved.
- Will I be able to hear in noisy places?
While no hearing aid can filter out all background noise, hearing devices can reduce some types of background noise so that you can enjoy conversation and improve communication in places like restaurants, business meetings and social gatherings.
- What are the differences in the types and styles of hearing aids?
A lot of people who are new to hearing aids remember the eyeglass or "body" styles regularly used 40 or 50 years ago (which comprise only about 1% of all hearing aids marketed today). Hearing aids now come in a wide variety of sizes, from those that sit behind the ear to tiny, completely-in-the-canal models.
- How do I know which one will be best for me?
There are several factors that will determine which hearing aid will be the right one for you. They include the nature and severity of your hearing loss, your lifestyle, your job, your eyesight and dexterity, and the size and shape of your outer ear and inner ear canal. Ultimately, your hearing professional will be able to instruct you as to the best choice for you.
- How about advances in technology?
Like many other products (TVs, personal music players, computers), hearing aids have experienced a major technological revolution in the past decade and especially in the last couple years. Today’s hearing instruments have brought unprecedented performance to patients around the world.
Many of the digital hearing aids on the market today eliminate feedback, provide optimal performance in noise, manage power, enhance telephone performance and log crucial data.
- Is there an adjustment period?
Yes, most people need an adjustment period of up to four months before receiving the full benefit from their hearing aids. You should, however, expect to notice demonstrable benefits during this trial period.
- Will I need a hearing aid in one ear or two?
Two-ear hearing (called "binaural") is better than one. If you have hearing loss in only one ear, you may be fine with one hearing aid. Age- and noise-related hearing loss tend to affect both ears, but your hearing profile for each ear is probably different. If there is a loss in both ears, you will probably benefit more with a binaural solution. Today, about two-thirds of new users opt for dual hearing instruments, and as a group they report a higher level of satisfaction than purchasers of a single instrument.
- How much will a hearing aid cost?
The price of a hearing aid will vary depending on the specific model and features you need. Whatever the final cost, The Hearing Place offers flexible/affordable financing plans. You should also check to see if you qualify for free or discounted hearing aids from your employer, union, the Veteran's Administration, insurance provider, HMO or local charity (such as Lions Club).
- What about the hearing aids I see advertised for around $40?
These inexpensive models are simply amplifiers that will make everything louder (including all the ambient noises around you). They will not, for example, separate human voices from background noises, or hear directional sounds like the more sophisticated hearing instruments available today.
- What if I have a problem with my hearing aid? Is there a guarantee?
You can typically expect a 30-day trial period with a money-back guarantee, as well as a limited manufacturer's warranty. But it is important to give yourself a reasonable chance to adjust to your hearing aid.
- So if I think I've got a hearing problem, what do I do?
You need to make an appointment with a hearing professional for an evaluation, consultation and hearing test. The Hearing Place offers this evaluation at no charge.
- How do I find a hearing professional?
When seeking treatment for hearing loss, be sure to select a hearing professional who understands the available technology and offers follow-up care. Follow-up care is provided at no additional charge at THE HEARING PLACE.
- Should I consider purchasing a hearing aid online?
We believe that you achieve the best possible results with your hearing aids by consulting with a hearing aid professional in person, so we do not endorse retailers selling over the Internet.
There should never be anything in the way of your ability to hear. That is why we offer flexible, affordable financing for our products.
Contact The Hearing Place today at 888-754-1378 to schedule your hearing test or browse our website for more information regarding our services or hearing loss