Hearing Aid

What is a Hearing Aid?

Hearing Aid Austin TexasA hearing aid is a device that can be worn within or behind the ear to improve hearing. This device allows people with some degree of hearing loss to be more engaged and in tune with their surrounding environment.

A hearing aid comes in three levels of sophistication. There are basic, mid-level, and high-end technologies available at different cost levels. Enhanced digital, programmable, self-regulating hearing aids with Bluetooth connection, smartphone control, and direct iPhone connection are an example of the technology that is now available.

The right level of technology and cosmetic aspects are something that is personal as well as related to your type of hearing loss and eardrum issue. The detailed evaluation by Dr. Slaughter and William J. Boggess, M.S. in our office, is necessary to inform you of all of your options.

Who is a candidate for a hearing aid?

Patients who have hearing loss can have difficulty communicating with friends, family, and coworkers. They can benefit from modern hearing aids, even if the amount of loss is mild. If you or your family have felt frustration at your lack of understanding, it is worth having a thorough evaluation of your ears and hearing to see the cause and options.

The right level of technology and cosmetic aspects are something that is personal as well as related to your type of hearing loss and eardrum issue. The detailed evaluation by Dr. Slaughter and William J. Boggess, M.S. in our office, is necessary to inform you of all of your options.

Hearing Aid Patient Testimonial

balloon sinuplasty austin tx | Sinus & Snoring Specialists
“I went to Mr. Boggess a couple times for my hearing testing as well as fitting a new hearing aid. He appeared very knowledgeable and was thorough in his work. He was very courteous and never pressured me to buy from him. He was so good I didn’t mind traveling from Houston to Austin to see him. I am glad I found this wonderful audiologist. ”

-Prabodh M.

Click here to read the full testimonial!

Benefits of Hearing Aids

Besides having improved hearing, one of the benefits many patients notice is the improved ability to communicate with their loved ones. This enhancement in understanding allows for an improvement in personal relationships. Since it will allow you to be part of the conversation, you will no longer have a tendency to withdraw from social situations.

In addition, hearing aids can reduce frustration with yourself and others. You will not longer have to ask people to repeat themselves or need the volume of the TV turned up, allowing you to feel more comfortable in your personal life.

  • Improved relationships
  • Better quality of life
  • Less stress in social situations

How Do Hearing Aids Work?

A hearing aid consists of three sections: the microphone, the speaker, and the amplifier. The microphone works by picking up the sounds in the surrounding area. These sound waves are then converted into electrical signals. The amplifier amplifies the signals before sending them into the speaker and into the ear. A simple way to think about it is that the hearing aid takes sound waves, amplifies them, then sends them as amplified sound waves towards the eardrum.

What Is The Typical Hearing Aid Selection Process?

The hearing aid selection process begins with having a comprehensive hearing test done first. The audiologist will evaluate the findings from the testing. Once the results are analyzed, you can explain what improvements you want from your hearing aid. Then you will start the hearing aid process by wearing hearing aids in your daily life.

  • Obtaining a comprehensive hearing test.
  • Determine the personal needs and lifestyle goals of the patient
  • One week trial with hearing aids to determine the benefit for yourself.
  • Purchase devices with a 30-day trial.

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Different Types of Hearing Aids

Hearing aids can be styled and worn three ways: in the ear, in the ear canal, and behind the ear.

  • In The Ear: The hearing aid is placed in the “conchal bowl”, the indentation in our ear that surrounds the ear canal.
  • In The Canal: The hearing aid is fit cozily in the ear canal. The aid is customized to fit the size and shape of the ear canal.
  • Behind The Ear: This is the most common style of hearing aid. A hearing aid is placed behind the ear. The hearing aid is connected to a small clear tube that sits in the ear canal to deliver the amplified sound waves. These devices are very popular as separation of the hearing aid from the amplified sound waves provides a superior and clearer sound with less feedback.

Hearing aids can also be either analog or digital.

  • Digital: These aids convert sound waves into a digital code that is amplified into sound waves. This creates a superior, cleaner, and more natural sound.
  • Analog: These hearing aids convert sound waves into electrical signals that are then amplified into sound. As technology has advanced most patients are opting for the superior digital product but analog hearing aids are typically less expensive.

Effects of hearing loss

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Studies have shown that untreated hearing loss can affect your overall health. Hearing loss can be indicative of a larger health issue. Many diseases can produce hearing loss. Inner ear viral inflammation, autoimmune diseases, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and brain tumors are just a few examples. Left undiagnosed these conditions can worsen over time.

A person’s job performance, income potential, and the ability to learn in a changing work environment are all issues common with hearing loss. Co-worker’s perception of the person with hearing loss can suffer as they mistake hearing loss for a lack of ability or knowledge.
Communication is critical to social interaction. Studies have shown that people with hearing loss can become socially withdrawn and depressed.

  • Indicative of more serious health problems
  • Difficulty maintaining a job
  • Trouble communicating effectively

How Are Hearing Aids Placed?

To begin with, we start with a detailed hearing evaluation by our Audiologist, William J. Boggess, to identify the type and degree of hearing loss. This is performed in our state of the art soundproof booth, using an audiometer and special headphones.

In the event that hearing loss is identified, you will be evaluated by Dr. Slaughter to identify if any medical or surgical therapy could correct the hearing loss.

If a hearing aid is the right treatment option for you, our audiologist will suggest scheduling a hearing aid evaluation appointment with you. He will review all the modern hearing aids, levels of technologies, types of fit and visibility. This will also take into consideration the situations where you need the amplification the most, your level of activity, your level of manual dexterity, the cost implications and insurance coverage, among other factors. This critical step assures a successful fitting with the right instrument for you.

How Long Do Hearing Aids Last?

Hearing aids will typically last for 6-8 years if used properly. If the cost of hearing aids is broken down over 6-8 years, the daily cost will typically come out to approximately $1.40 per day per pair. A reasonable cost for a dramatic improvement in day-to-day life.

Schedule a consultation

Sinus & Snoring Specialists is a full-service ENT medical practice that can serve all of your ear, hearing, and hearing aid needs in one convenient location. If you are suffering from hearing loss, hearing aids might be the right option for you. If you are suffering from hearing loss, hearing aids might be the right option for you. Call (512) 601-0303 to schedule a consultation at our office in Austin, TX.

Sinus & Snoring Specialists is proud to be a designated Center of Excellence for Balloon Sinuplasty.   

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