There are more than 24 million Americans of all ages who suffer some type of hearing problem. Hearing loss is a medical problem. It may be sensorineural (nerve loss), conductive (blocked sound transmissioon), central (a problem in the brain), or a mixture of these. Occasionally, hearing loss is related to a metabolic condition or an intracranial problem. Have your otolaryngologist or otologist and their audiology staff examine your ears and hearing and recommend the proper treatment for your hearing loss.
1. Use of the telephone
2. Listening to TV or radio
3. Speaking to friends, relatives, or neighbors
4. Communicating with coworkers, customers, or clients
5. Chatting at a party
Hearing in a movie theater
1. Avoid shopping malls
2. Feel frustrated with family members because you can’t hear correctly what they say
3. Make you embarrassed in groups
4. Make you irritable
5. Cause you to feel “alone”
Argue with family members
stated previously, hearing loss is a medical problem.
Your best health interests are served by the proper evaluation
of your hearing by an otolaryngologist and an audiologist working
as a team.
There are many different types of diseases
and conditions of the outer and middle ear which can produce hearing
loss. Many of these conditions
can be medically managed and improved by the otolaryngologist.See
your ear doctor if there are any questions in this regard.
Problems affecting the inner ear may
be the result of noise damage, trauma, disease, and/or genetic factors.
Some forms of sensorineural hearing loss need medical management.
A rare few kinds of nerve hearing loss benefit from surgical
treatment. Of those, only
a few are caused by serious, life-threatening disease, but these
few don’t look much different on initial presentation from
the non-life-threatening hearing loss.
Thus, we cannot stress enough that hearing loss must be properly
evaluated by both an audiologist and an otolaryngologist.
Therefore, it is not in the best interest of your hearing
health for anyone to purchase a hearing aid without a professional
Both ears work together to present balanced
sound perception to the brain. When
one or both ears loses their ability to pick up sounds normally,
listening and responding to every-day speech and sounds of the environment
Our brain is designed for stereo input.
With equal input to each ear, our brain presents us with complete
information.Balanced hearing is vital to our ability to instantly
locate the source of a sound and hear/understand in a noisy environment.
Hearing aids make sound louder. They
do not improve the ability of the ear to understand. They range
in size from an all-in-the-canal tiny aid to a larger canal aid
to behind-the-ear aids to body aids. The kind of hearing aid needed
depends on the severity of the hearing loss and the amount of money
spent on the aid(s). Programmable in-the-ear aids are the standard
of the industry at this time.
of binaural amplification:
SAFETY: When a person hears with two ears, locating the source of a sound
is greatly improved. This
can be life-saving in dangerous situations.
Sound input from two ears is superior when trying to understand
voices and other sounds in group situations, especially when background
noise is present.
WIDER RANGE OF HEARING:
Voices barely audible at a distance of 10 feet with one ear can
be heard at a distance of up to 30 feet or more with two ears.
MORE NATURAL LISTENING:
listening with one ear is physically tiring and stressful.
Hearing with two ears is less stressful and more natural
than hearing with one ear, like switching to mono when you are used
to hearing a record stereophonically.
Your new hearing aids
can be of tremendous help. However
having realistic expectations of what the hearing aids can and cannot
do is an important first step toward hearing rehabilitation. Both you, your family, and even your close friends should understand
the following information about hearing instruments.
Hearing aids should allow you to hear many sounds that you
may not hear, or may not hear clearly, without amplification.
Examples of such sounds might be soft speech, children’s
voices, and soft environmental noises.
Hearing aids should allow you to understand speech more clearly,
and with less effort, in a variety of listening situations.
Hearing aids should prevent normally loud sounds from becoming
uncomfortably loud. Sounds
that are uncomfortably loud for normal hearing individuals may also
be uncomfortable when using hearing instruments.
Hearing aids may allow you to understand speech more clearly
in some types of noisy situations.
Hearing aids will require time to get use to, and to attain
your maximum performance potential as you gradually become accustomed
Hearing aids will
not restore your hearing levels to “normal” or pre-existing
Hearing aids will
not slow down the progression of your sensorineural hearing
Hearing aids cannot remove all background noise.
Some hearing instruments can reduce amplification of some
types of background noise, but may have a similar effect on speech
information. Your hearing
aids will often produce improved sound quality and a more comfortable
listening experience in some noisy environments.
When speaking to anyone who may have
a hearing problem, first speak the person’s name in order
to attract his/her attention. Then
proceed to repeat the message. Be
close, generally within 3 to 5 feet of the listener.
If you, the speaker, realize that the message was not understood,
one of the following strategies may be helpful to improve communication.
Original sentence:y mother called
Repeat sentence:My mother
fewer words or more common words, or both:
Original sentence:The black and
yellow cardigan is hanging in the closet.
Easier sentence:The sweater
is in the closet
The television is broken.
Rephrase sentence: The TV
Repeat key words and/or
provide more information:
Original sentence: I made some
More information: I made some
baked chicken. We’ll
take it to the picnic.
Speak (or write) one important
Original sentence:The boys are
the response when asking a question:
Where did you go?
Expanded sentence:Did you
go home after the party?
from the known. Start by presenting easy information:
Please put the tray on the table on the porch.
Here is the tray (hands tray to listener).
The table is on the porch (speaker gestures
Please take the tray to the table.