Archive | Hearing Instruments

How can I troubleshoot my hearing aids?

Ear Wax

The number one cause of hearing aid failure is ear wax debris in the speaker opening of the hearing aid, the small hole in the hearing aid that goes into your ear. If your hearing aid stops working, first check this part of the hearing aid to be sure that it is free of any ear wax or other debris. Use the brush or the pick that came with your hearing aid to carefully remove the blockage. Hearing aids should be inspected and cleaned daily to prevent problems. If you have a chronic problem with wax build-up, your audiologist may offer other solutions.

Weak or Dead Battery

The second most common cause of hearing aid failure is a depleted or weak battery. Test your battery or replace it with a fresh battery.

If you have cleaned the hearing aid and replaced the battery and your hearing and continues to malfunction, contact your audiologist. If you do not have an audiologist, please contact us. We’ll be happy to help!

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Brief history of the hearing aid

Hearing aids are defined as electroacoustic devices that typically fit in or behind the wearer’s ear and are designed to amplify sound for the user. The early days of hearing aids included devices known as ear trumpets. These trumpets would amplify the sound going into the ear through a cone-shaped funnel. Because one end was large and open, it would gather the sound energy and direct it into the user’s ear canal.

As technology progressed from the 19th century, the movement toward modern hearing aids began with advances in the telephone. The very first electronic hearing aid was created in 1898. It was called the Akoulathon and was created by Miller Reese Hutchison. It worked by adding an electric signal to a weak sound, which would then amplify it and pass the signal to a receiver in the patient’s ear. Unfortunately, there aren’t any photos of this device that represent it factually.

During World War II, military technology helped advance the development of hearing aids even more. In the mid-1920s, the Acousticon’s Model 56 was one of the first portable units, though it was relatively heavy. In the ’60s and ’70s, huge advancements were made to hearing aids in the form of microprocessors and multi-channel amplitude compression. Microprocessors are what allowed the device to become as small as it is today. Amplitude compression allowed for the separation of the audio signal into frequency bands. With these frequency bands separated, one could adjust sounds to be louder when they were weak and quieter when they were too loud.

Today, hearing aids are nearly invisible thanks to all of this earlier research. The Oticon Company developed the first all-digital hearing aid in 1995, which could adjust itself depending on the environment without the need for a physical volume control. Now we have hearing aids that take advantage of Bluetooth technology and more.

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Hearing instrument pricing, selection and service

Competitive pricing and 3-day trial period

Types of hearing aids – News: Receiver-In-The-Ear (RITE) and “Slim Tube” hearing aids are the most unobtrusive type of hearing instrument currently available. This style keeps the ear canal open to reduce any plugged-up sensation. The appropriateness of these hearing devices is limited based on the degree of hearing loss.

Behind-The-Ear (BTE) instruments are appropriate for hearing losses from mild to severe. Directional microphones, multiple listening programs and a tele-coil for compatibility are available for these models. This style is best suited for pediatric patients and individuals with excessive moisture and accumulative cerumen (earwax).

In-The-Ear (ITE) hearing instrument fills the outer portion of the ear. This style is appropriate for mild to severe hearing losses and may include features such as directional microphones, multiple listening programs, and a tele-coil.

In-The-Canal (ITC) style hearing instrument is a smaller model than the full-shell ITE and is appropriate for hearing losses from mild to moderately severe. Features are limited due to size restrictions. Good manual dexterity is more important for this style.

Invisible Hearing Aids the Completely-In-The-Canal (CIC) hearing instrument is almost invisible. The appropriateness of this style hearing instrument is based on degree of hearing loss and manual dexterity. Features are limited due to size restrictions.

We carry several top brands, including Oticon, Phonak

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Hearing aids are more than worth the cost

Hearing aids provide a multitude of benefits for the user but they can be expensive. Typically, hearing aids cost anywhere from $2,000 to $6,800 a pair, depending on battery life and how powerful the hearing aids are. However, for those that do not realize the benefits increased hearing provides, it may be difficult to purchase some items on the upper end of the price range. Here are some reasons why hearing aids may just change your life:

1. Is it difficult to hear your child or grandchild from across the room? You will be able to hear sounds you have not heard before or in a long time.

2. When is the last time you had a telephone conversation and constantly had to ask the recipient, “What did you say?” You may have bad service or your phone may have an issue with its transceiver, but if this is an ongoing issue, it may be time to get your hearing checked. You may regain the ability to hear over the telephone more clearly.

3. When in a group of friends or family members, it is difficult to include yourself in the conversation if you don’t have a firm grasp of what is going on. If you are having difficulty hearing conversations going on right in front of you, it may be another sign of hearing loss. Give yourself more confidence in a group setting with hearing aids; it will make communication easier for you.

4. One of the most essential aspects of communication is being able to communicate in a noisy setting. When you last took out your husband or wife on a date, did you have a lot of trouble hearing them over the noises in the restaurant? Last time you took your kids to see a movie, was it nearly impossible to hear them while previews were playing? When you cannot understand what the other person is saying in any kind of situation, it can produce a harsh blow to your confidence.

Hearing aids will amplify sound to allow you to hear sounds that you were unable to hear before. It is very important for hearing aids to be properly fitted by a licensed audiologist or healthcare professional so that the amplification matches your hearing loss. It is also important to contact an audiologist prior to making a purchase so that you can figure out exactly what you need.

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What kind of hearing device is right for you?

At Audiology Professionals we strive to find the hearing device that best fits your needs, lifestyle and budget. Here are examples of the different types of hearing devices we offer and the types of hearing loss they are best for:

Receiver-In-The-Ear (RITE) and “Slim Tube” hearing aids are the most unobtrusive type of hearing instrument currently available. This style keeps the ear canal open to reduce any plugged-up sensation. The appropriateness of these hearing devices is limited based on the degree of hearing loss.

Behind-The-Ear (BTE) instruments are appropriate for hearing losses from mild to severe. Directional microphones, multiple listening programs and a tele-coil for compatibility are available for these models. This style is best suited for pediatric patients and individuals with excessive moisture and accumulative cerumen (earwax).

In-The-Ear (ITE) hearing instrument fills the outer portion of the ear. This style is appropriate for mild to severe hearing losses and may include features such as directional microphones, multiple listening programs, and a tele-coil.

In-The-Canal (ITC) style hearing instrument is a smaller model than the full-shell ITE and is appropriate for hearing losses from mild to moderately severe. Features are limited due to size restrictions. Good manual dexterity is more important for this style.

Invisible Hearing Aids such as the Completely-In-The-Canal (CIC) hearing instrument is almost invisible. The appropriateness of this style hearing instrument is based on degree of hearing loss and manual dexterity. Features are limited due to size restrictions.

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Audiology Professionals

Audiology Professionals