February 10th, 2014 | General | by Tracy Saunders

I’ve Got Hearing Aids! Now What?

Getting hearing aids can feel like the end of a long journey for some. The average person will first suspect a hearing loss and then wait 7 years before booking a hearing test. Seven long years of struggling in background noise, laughing at the wrong jokes, asking others to repeat themselves and pretending to hear. Years of ignoring your spouse’s plea to get your hearing tested, your son insisting that he doesn’t mumble and blaming difficulty hearing the TV on the cable’s bad connection. Finally, you have made the decision to have your hearing tested. At that appointment you learn that you do in fact have a hearing loss and order a pair of state-of-the-art hearing aids. Now what?

While getting hearings aids may feel like the end of a journey; it actually marks the start of a new one. Luckily, this new journey is quite simple and easy to follow. Once a person is fitted with hearing aids, their homework is simple. Wear them. Wear them every day and all day long if you can. Some patients start off by wearing their hearing aids all day and others gradually work up to this level. The goal is to put your hearing aids on in the morning and leave them there until bedtime. Doing this allows your brain to become accustomed to your new, better hearing and you should actually forget you are even wearing anything at all! A few weeks or months after getting your new hearing aids and wearing them daily, now what?

We would call this phase of your hearing aid journey, the “maintenance” phase. During this time, we want to maintain your hearing aids and maintain the hearing level you have. Hearing Solutions offers drop-in cleaning services at all our clinic locations. Regular in-clinic cleanings allows our staff to use specialized equipment to clean debris that can build up in the hearing aids and check whether they are functioning well. No appointment is needed for a cleaning service.

So, when is your next appointment? Once you have gotten your hearing aids, we will assume you are wearing them and enjoying them! In other words, no news is good news. All patients are encouraged to call and book a service appointment whenever they have any difficulty with their hearing or their hearing aids. Patients may book an appointment because they feel their hearing aids need to be turned up or turned down; because they feel their hearing has worsened; because they want the sound quality of their hearing aids adjusted or because they want certain features turned on or off. The list is endless but the point is simple, if you are having any difficulties or have any questions give us a call! If you have purchased your hearing aids from us, your appointments are always free.

Let’s say that you love your hearing aids right off the bat. You are perfectly happy and are hearing quite well. You don’t want anything changed. That’s great! You will always be asked to come for a check-up 2 to 4 weeks after getting your new hearing aids. That is a standard policy and allows us to evaluate your progress and ensure correct use of the hearing aids. After that, like previously mentioned, it is up to you to let us know if you are having difficulties. Otherwise, we won’t call you until a year later for your annual check-up. At least once a year, we want to see you, evaluate your hearing and check the functionality of your hearing aids. All hearing aids sold these days are fully digital, which means they are also reprogrammable. Therefore, if your hearing loss changes, your hearing aids can simply be reprogrammed to match your new hearing loss (small caveat: a large change in your hearing, such as that caused by a virus or accident, may not be correctable by your hearing aids. Such a large change in hearing is rare).

Congratulations are always in order for a patient who has embarked on the journey towards better hearing health. For some, it can seem like a daunting journey, but it is incredibly worthwhile both for you and those around you. Most importantly, it is often much easier than anybody would expect. Partnering with a clinic like Hearing Solutions ensures you will be taken care of long after your purchase of hearing aids. While buying the hearing aids is an important step, it is only the start of a long but exciting journey. Trust us with your hearing and, in turn, you will always get sound advice you can trust!

Tracy Saunders, M.Sc.Cl., Reg. CASLPO 

Hearing Solutions Audiologist & Audiology Trainer

 

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