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Utah: 435-688-8991 Nevada: 702-896-0031

What to Expect When Getting Your First Hearing Aid

What to Expect When Getting Your First Hearing Aid

Although nearly two in three adults aged 70 and older need hearing aids, only one in seven actually use them. As the third most common health problem in the U.S., the issue affects sufferers both physically and emotionally. The impact of hearing loss on communication and relationships can lead to feelings of depression and isolation. Communication skills are central to a successful life, and hearing is a major component of communication. A properly fit hearing aid can make a significant difference in your life.

When to Seek Help

While hearing aids will not restore your natural hearing and you may still miss out on some sounds, hearing loss will be greatly decreased. Many people deal with denial when it comes to hearing loss, possibly because they suffer from feelings of embarrassment. If you notice any hearing issues, you should see a doctor as soon as possible to safeguard your current hearing and protect yourself from further hearing loss.

Progressive Hearing Loss

Progressive hearing loss is not just for the elderly — it can strike at any age. Avoiding loud sounds, using earplugs and limiting headphone use can all protect your hearing. Degeneration of the inner ear creates lowered sensitivity to high frequencies. Age, genetics and illness all play a role in hearing loss. Ear trauma and certain medications can also contribute to hearing loss.

Diagnosing Hearing Loss

In the majority of cases, hearing loss occurs over a period of time. If you experience difficulty hearing high-frequency sounds, hearing over the telephone or always need to turn up volume controls, you might be a candidate for hearing aids. If you suspect you need a hearing aid, you need to visit a certified audiologist who will screen, assess and diagnose your current hearing condition. Results from these tests will help establish goals and expectations for amplifications. Medicaid and many private insurance plans cover the cost of audiologists and hearing aids.

How Hearing Aids Work

Hearing aid technology has advanced in recent years, creating more adaptive features. Hearing aids are tiny instruments worn inside or behind your ear to increase sound. Available features include:

  • Noise reduction options,
  • Adaptive directional microphones and
  • Multiple channels.

They improve your hearing by amplifying soft sounds. Small microphones collect sounds, and a computer chip amplifies them into digital code. This code is then converted into sound waves and delivered to your ears through special speakers.

Successful Hearing Aid Use

You will need to work closely with your audiologist to set realistic goals for your hearing. Proper fitting and verification are essential to hearing aid success. Patients must learn to overcome their dysfunctional listening behaviors and realize that they will experience an acclimation period with hearing aids. You will need to experiment with volume and balance. Keep in mind that it takes practice to insert and wear hearing aids correctly. Make sure to visit your audiologist at least twice a year for adjustments and re-tuning to receive the maximum benefit from your hearing device.

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