My mother has recently complained of feeling light-headed or dizzy. What could be causing it, and is there a cure?
Dizziness is a symptom of a problem, not a disease. Although there are many conditions that cause dizziness, 85% of cases can be attributed to inner ear (vestibular) problems. Successful treatment of dizziness hinges upon correctly diagnosing the cause. Once that is determined, a treatment plan can be designed. This may include medical, audiologic, and/or physical therapy.
Your mother should contact her primary physician first to make sure there is not a medical condition requiring attention. Next, a thorough vestibular evaluation by a licensed audiologist experienced in testing and treating dizziness should be performed. Following that testing, additional recommendations or referrals may be made. Because of the potential for falls, dizziness should be thoroughly evaluated and treated as soon as possible.
Why do I need to come back for several follow-up appointments?
Hearing aids contain sophisticated technology that may require several fine-tuning adjustments. In addition, your audiologist must check for any sign of allergic reactions to the plastics, or fit problems. We feel it is always best to prevent problems rather than having to deal with them after an allergic reaction or sore ear occurs. Also, regular follow up can prevent long-term problems that occur as a result of improper usage.
My audiologist told me that a digital hearing aid would be better for my hearing loss. Why?
A digital hearing aid is able to process speech with greater accuracy and less distortion than a traditional device, allowing for better sound quality. In addition, digital hearing aids include noise reduction features. Since these vary by manufacturer, be sure to discuss your particular device with your Audiologist so you’ll have the appropriate expectations for the technology that you and your audiologist have chosen.
I have been told I need to use two hearing aids. Why?
Our ears are designed to work in tandem. If two hearing aids are used, the person can tell the direction of sound and is better able to understand sounds in a noisy environment.
Why do the batteries only last a week to ten days, yet my watch battery lasts for months?
The circuit in a hearing aid is very different from the circuit in a watch. A hearing aid consists of three major components (microphone, circuit, and speaker) that all require power on a constant basis. In comparison, a watch requires a very small battery drain. Another reason is the compromise in battery size that allows for smaller hearing aids. The smaller the battery, the lower the power and the shorter the life.
My hearing aid is being sent for repair. Why does it take 7-10 business days to get may aid back?
Each manufacturer allows us to send hearing aids via 2nd Day Air. If you drop your aid off on Monday, it arrives at the manufacturer on Wednesday afternoon. It then takes the manufacturer at least 3 days to repair and pass the aid through quality assurance. This step will occasionally take longer as it must pass the quality inspection. Once the aid is repaired, it is sent back to us by 2nd Day Air. Once we receive the aid, we verify the repair was completed and program the device. We contact you to schedule an appointment as soon as the aid has been thoroughly checked.
Why do hearing aids break down?
Hearing aids are miniature electronic devices used every day, all day long, in an environment that is naturally hot and humid. Given this fact, it’s understandable that some maintenance or routine repair of the device is required on occasion. Remember, your body temperature is 98.6 degrees. Think of how the weather feels on a humid day at this temperature. This is one of the major reasons a hearing aid will need repair. Earwax is another factor. The hearing aid is essentially sitting in a wax machine constantly and can become plugged with wax even if you clean the device regularly. Your best course of action is to schedule regular appointments with your audiologist for routine hearing aid checks to try and stay ahead of the game.
What can I do in addition or instead of hearing aids to help my hearing situation?
Assistive Listening Devices (ALDs) are an excellent option to use in addition to or instead of hearing aids, and are especially useful for listening on the telephone or watching TV. The best way to decide which ALDs are best suited to your lifestyle and hearing loss is to ask your audiologist.
Why do I still have trouble hearing even with my hearing aids?
There may be a different answer for each individual patient. We will assume the patient has been fitted with appropriate amplification before answering. Hearing aids are not a cure for hearing loss. As their name implies, they are an aid to hearing. A person with a hearing loss has a “disorder” to some part of the ear that won’t be “cured” by hearing aids. A damaged ear may distort sound as it is received before the information reaches the brain. The best hearing aid in the world cannot overcome this type of adversity. Wearing hearing aids can help you to hear better, but will not give you perfect hearing all the time.
Do I need one or two hearing aids?
The number of hearing aids required is dependent upon the best treatment for your hearing loss. If you have hearing loss in both ears and two hearing aids will best balance your hearing, then two hearing aids are recommended. The treatment of hearing loss involves more then merely amplifying sounds to overcome the deficit of the ear. The brain plays a major role in hearing, as well, and is most efficient when it receives balanced input on a consistent basis. Therefore, if your hearing loss affects both ears, you should wear two hearing aids every day.
Hearing Loss FAQs from Hug Center for Hearing. Click on each question to expand its answer.