The Audiologist has conducted the necessary Hearing Loss tests on you. To your surprise, the reports show that you need Hearing Aids. The truth is that most of us will need Hearing aids at some stage in life. It may come as a shock to some but accept the fact. Discuss your requirements with the Audiologist or your Hearing care professional. If this is your first Hearing aid, you should know a little about the process of Hearing Aid fitting. There are different types of Hearing aids with different specifications. It is very important that you discuss your daily lifestyle with the Audiologist. Based on your lifestyle he or she will suggest the Best Hearing Aid for you.
What is Hearing Aid Fitting?
The Hearing aid fitting begins with the evaluation of the Audiogram report. To walking out with your new Hearing Aids. Below is the brief description of the Hearing aid fitting process.
Selection of Hearing Aids
Your Audiologist is well qualified to decide the right hearing aid machine. Different Hearing Aid styles and models have different technical specifications or fitting range. The manufacturers provide the specifications to the Audiologist. It is advisable to convey the preferred cost or Hearing aid price range. This will make the selection process simple.
Can I Choose the Hearing Aid I like?
When it comes to the style or type of Hearing aid, you, the user have to play a pro-active role in the selection process. You have to discuss your needs and requirements. If you are a working professional, you will prefer a Hearing aid which is not visible. If your work involves talking to clients on the phone. You will certainly prefer a Hearing aid with Bluetooth connectivity. Read this article on Useful features in Digital Hearing aids.
Ear Impression for Mould or Shell Making.
Once you select the model and the style of the Hearing aid, the Audiologist will take the Ear Impression. The Audiologist will inject a special paste into the ear. The paste fills up the ear and solidifies in a few minutes. This solid impression is the precise shape of your ear canal and the outer ear.
The Audiologist sends the impression to the Ear mould or shell making laboratory. An Ear Mould helps in the physical fitting and reduces chances of Feedback. The impression is also required to make a shell for an ITC, CIC or an IIC Hearing Aid.
Programming or Tuning The Hearing Aids
Your Audiologist will call you again for the fitting and programming of the Hearing Aids. The laboratories take a few days to manufacture and deliver the Ear Moulds. Or the complete Hearing Aid if you have selected an In the Ear type.
Programming is a procedure to match the output of the Hearing aid to your Hearing Loss. No two people have the same pattern of Hearing Loss. So each Hearing aid’s performance and output is set or tuned to suit the user.
Expectations from Your First Hearing Aid Fitting
You are eagerly awaiting to hear with your new Hearing aids. The expectations are high, chances are that your first experience may be disappointing.
Initially, you will hear a lot of sounds making you uncomfortable. There is nothing wrong with the Hearing Aids. These are sounds which your Ear has not heard due to your Hearing Loss.
Do keep in mind that there will be a difference between natural hearing and hearing with a Hearing aid. Expecting to hear as well as before will disappoint you, get used to the new sound. You should have reasonable expectations from your Hearing Aids.
Understanding Hearing Aid Features
Digital Hearing aid technology has advanced rapidly. Manufacturers offer great features for the comfort and convenience of the user. Features like multi-program are also available in economical Hearing aids. Your Audiologist will explain all the features present in your Hearing aids. Make note of all the features as they will improve the hearing experience.
Adjusting To Your New Hearing Aids
Another shock awaits you as you step out of the clinic. The noise of cars passing by or some noisy activity on the street will sound unbearable. Do not panic, switch off your Hearing Aids and reach home. Our brain needs some time to process the new sounds. It’s a matter of time before the brain starts recognising the new sounds. Start using the Hearing Aids at home. Talk to your family members as you are familiar with their voice. Ask them to repeat if you miss a few words, do not ask them to talk loudly. Preferably use your Hearing Aids as long as you are comfortable, in case you feel tired, remove them. Increase the number of hours gradually over days.
Hearing Aid Adjustment Period
It generally takes 2 to 3 weeks to adjust to the new Hearing Aids. Do not get impatient and rush back to the Audiologist. You will be comfortable in a few weeks. If still not happy, make note of all the sounds that make you uncomfortable. Issues like unable to hear the door-bell. Unable to understand the speech of your wife or your children. Unable to talk on the phone etc.
Take an appointment and visit your Audiologist. Explain the issues bothering you, a little adjustment can solve them. Your Audiologist can tune the Hearing aids perfectly if you give proper feedback.
Hearing aid Maintenance Tips
Read the user manual provided by the Company. Understand the warranty terms and keep the warranty card safely. Your Audiologist will also offer handy tips to maintain your Hearing aids. Understand when and how to replace the battery and how to store the Hearing aids at night. Read about the simple at home maintenance tips. to ensure that your Hearing aids give you years of trouble-free service.
Using Hearing aids will bring the fun back into your lives. Do things you always wanted to do. Go for movies, operas, listen to music.