What is an Audiologist?
Audiologists are autonomous professionals that are required to complete a Master’s or Doctorate degree in Audiology. They are also required to complete internships, as part of their training to become hearing healthcare professionals.
Audiologists in Ontario are regulated by the College of Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists in Ontario, also known as CASLPO. This organization has the responsibility of making sure these hearing care clinicians meet rigorous professional and ethical standards, as set out by the Audiology and Speech Language Pathology Act (1991).
As well as being included in the Regulated Health Professionals Act, Audiologists are authorized to perform what is described by the Ontario Association of Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists (OSLA) as “the controlled act of prescribing a hearing aid to a hearing impaired person.” According to the OSLA, these hearing care professionals are “qualified to certify hearing impairments for both federal and provincial funding agencies.”
What services can Audiologists provide?
- Administer comprehensive evaluations
- Prescribe and dispense Assistive Listening Devices (ALDs) including: hearing aids, sensory aids, alerting systems and captioning devices
- They can provide counselling and aural rehabilitation services
- Provide complete assessment and aural habilitation for babies
- Evaluate and treat specific forms of tinnitus or ringing in the ears
- Evaluate vestibular function and provide interventions for things like balance retraining therapy, which can relieve specific forms of vertigo. Vertigo is a condition where you may feel like you or the world around you is spinning.
- Audiologists can promote, develop and manage hearing conservation programs for schools, governments and industry in an effort to reduce noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL).
- Audiologists are able to perform ear wax removal, also known as cerumen management. They are also allowed to conduct intraoperative monitoring, work in neuro-otology and complete clinical and academic audiologic research
- Audiologists are authorized to provide consultation to other professionals such as Speech-Language Pathologists, Physicians, Nurses, Teachers, Psychologists and Occupational Therapists. They can even refer patients in need of medical consultation.
Audiologists’ role in healthcare is essential in helping people maintain what most of us take for granted and that’s the ability to properly receive information through hearing and use that information to communicate with the outside world.
The negative effects of untreated or improperly managed hearing loss
- Compromise speech, language, cognitive and social development in toddlers
- Contribute to poor academic performance in school aged children
- Cause social isolation, depression, loss of income and employment in adults
- Improperly managed hearing loss treated with inappropriate hearing amplification can be dangerous for the patient and lead to more damage of their residual hearing
Early and accurate diagnosis of hearing loss and vestibular disorders by an Audiologist, backed by an effective hearing solution, comprised of treatment that is tailored to the individual needs of the patient, is the key to a better quality of life.
An effective treatment plan and its responsible execution by your Audiologist is the foundation of a patient’s aural rehabilitation.
Hearing Solutions’ team of qualified Clinicians, includes a roster of CASLPO registered Audiologists that have experience working in Canada and the United States in hospitals and clinics. If you think you need a hearing test because you feel you or a loved one is experiencing hearing loss you can visit any one of our clinics located across Ontario for a complete and free hearing assessment.