FAQs About Ear Protection
Wondering about hearing protection or looking to book an appointment with an audiologist? Here is a list of commonly asked questions and answers that you might find useful.
What are the common causes of hearing loss?
Hearing loss can occur through many different reasons, for example, the degeneration of the body over time, exposure to loud noise, or involvement in an accident.
What activities can you purchase hearing protection for?
Hear for You offers a range of hearing protection products for activities such as hunting, regular concert-goers, swimmers, sleeping, motorsports, surfing, high noise industrial environments, strong winds, shooting and custom protection to add to your everyday earphones.
How do you know if you are hard of hearing?
Hearing impairments can be present at any age and stage of life. It can be difficult to notice on yourself or others at first, as it can gradually occur. If you experience any of the following signs, it is advised you make an appointment with an audiologist.
- Hard work to keep up with and listen to conversations often leaving you exhausted
- Tinnitus symptoms are louder and more frequent
- Often missing conversations or asking someone to repeat themselves
- The volume of your devices, TV and radio needs to be higher than usual
- Lack of sounds noticed in your environment compared to normal
What can you expect at your audiology appointment?
Your audiology appointment will take approximately 45-60 minutes and will look at the cause of the hearing impairment while assessing the type and best solution for you. The appointment will involve a series of tasks, including a conversation to better understand the cause, what you are experiencing and how it is impacting you, as well as some simple hearing tests that involve listening to sounds. If a hearing aid is a next step for you, your appointment may involve a fitting.
What tests do you use to evaluate hearing?
There are several tests your audiologists may use, depending on your age (child or adult) and what challenges you are facing. For children, three tests are commonly used. The otoacoustic emissions (OAE) test, auditory brain (ABR) test and tympanometry. The tests used for adults are tuning fork tests, speed and word recognition tests, acoustic reflex measures and pure-tone tests. You can find more about what the tests involve here.
What styles of hearing aids are commonly used?
There are different styles of hearing aids to suit different needs, all to enhance your hearing. The three most common hearing aid styles are:
Behind the ear (BTE)
These are suitable for all ages and hearing impairments due to their excellent amplification capabilities. BTE aids sit on top of or behind the outer ear, with a tube that connects to an earpiece that sits in your ear canal.
In the ear (ITE)
These devices are fitted in a casing and snugly fit on the outside of your ear. These hearing aids are customizable and, therefore, extremely comfortable.
In the canal (ITC)
This particular device sits within your ear canal and funnels noise. These hearing aids are more inconspicuous and also completely customized to your ear canal.
When do you need to upgrade your hearing aids?
Hearing aids, although small and reliable, will need to be changed at some point in their life cycle. There are several warning signs you can look out for before contacting your audiologist, to ensure you are updating your device only when it is necessary to do so. The signs are:
- Changes in your circumstances (work environment, newborn baby)
- Your device is more than four years old
- Your hearing is declining
- New tech is on the market
Will hearing aids or protection make your hearing worse?
Contrary to popular belief, hearing aids do not make your hearing worse. When starting out with a hearing aid, your brain will adjust to the new levels of sound. This can take time and can cause a contrast if you remove the device. Hearing aids are also safe to use and will not damage your ear canal as they are customized to fit correctly.
Can lifestyle affect your hearing?
There are positive and negative lifestyle choices you can make that impact your hearing. For example, eating a healthy diet inclusive of fish, legumes, dark chocolate and more, that are known to facilitate the health of the ears. On the other hand, excessively listening to loud music on headphones can damage your eardrums.
If you have any further questions or would like to learn more about Hear for You Hearing & Balance Center, get in touch today by form or phone at 401-475-6116.