FAQs and Myths about hearing

1 in 5 Americans have a Hearing Problem!












Hearing loss = Dementia




Alzheimer's disease is most common type of dementia; accounts for an estimated 60 to 80 percent of cases.

Questions for adult/geriatric patients regarding hearing loss:

Answer the following with either Yes, Sometimes or Never

Does a hearing problem:
  1. Cause you to feel embarrassed when you meet new people?
  2. Cause you to feel frustrated when talking to members of your family? 
  3. Cause you difficulty when someone speaks in a whisper? 
  4. Cause you to feel disabled? 
  5. Cause you difficulty when visiting friends or relatives? 
  6. Cause you to avoid going to religious or social events? 
  7. Cause arguments with family members? 
  8. Cause difficulty listening to T.V.? 
  9. Cause you to limit your personal or social life? 
  10. Cause you difficulty when in a restaurant with relatives or friends?
 
Tabulate the patient's score using the following scores:
YES = 4 points
SOMETIMES = 2 points
NEVER = 0 points


Summary:
0-8:    No handicap
10-24:    Mild-moderate hearing disability
26-40:    Severe hearing disability

Taken from Ventry & Weinstein (1983) in Guidelines for Audiologic Screening, American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (Panel on Audiologic Assessment), 1997.

Self-Assessment Hearing Test

Please make note of the answer that best describe the frequency with which you experience each situation or feeling below. You will be asked to tally up the score at the end of the quiz.

Answer the questions with one of the following: Almost Always, Half of the Time, Occasionally, Never.
  1. I have a problem hearing on the telephone
  2. I have trouble following conversation involving two or more people
  3. People complain that my TV volume is too high
  4. I have to strain to understand conversations
  5. I miss hearing some common sounds like phones ringing or the doorbell
  6. I have trouble hearing conversations in a noisy place, like at a party or a restaurant.
  7. I have a hard time determining where sounds come from
  8. I misunderstand some words in a sentence and need to ask people to repeat themselves
  9. I have trouble understanding the speech of women and children
  10. I have worked in noisy environments (factory, construction, jet engines, etc.)
  11. I hear fine – people just don’t speak clearly
  12. People get annoyed because I misunderstand what they say
  13. I make inappropriate responses to things people say because I misunderstand them
  14. I avoid social activities because I can not hear well
  15. To be answered by a family member or a friend: Do you think this person has a hearing loss?

To score your test, give yourself 3 points for every “Almost Always,” 2 for every “Half of the Time,” 1 for every “Occasionally,” and 0 for every “Never.” If you have a blood relative with hearing loss, add 3 points to your score.

0-5 points:  Your hearing is fine. No action required. However, feel free to call for a free "baseline" test to substantiate it.
6-9 points:  Suggests at least a mild hearing problem – you should seek audiologic care.
10+ points: Suggests a significant hearing problem – strongly recommend you seek audiologic care.

Go inside the ear to see how it works

The Impact of Untreated Hearing Loss on Household Income

...shows that “untreated hearing loss results in a loss of income per household of up to $12,000 per year, depending on degree of hearing loss. For the group with the most severe hearing losses (10 percent of the total), the income differential between the aided and unaided groups is $31,000 a year. For the 24 million Americans with untreated hearing loss, this equates to $122 billion in lost income, due to underperformance on the job.”

How old are your ears?

 

Differences Between an Hearing Aid Specialist and a Audiologist

Both are hearing healthcare professionals, both are non-physician professionals who identify and
assess disorders of the hearing of children and adults. Both select, fit, and dispense amplification systems such as hearing aids and related devices; program cochlear implants; and provide instruction, rehabilitation, and counseling services to enhance human communication.

Both Hearing Instrument Specialist and audiologists that dispense hearing aids generally work with an ENT (Ear, Nose, and Throat) doctor’s office. Audiologist can diagnose - tell you what they have found, Hearing Instrument Specialist can not, both will refer to a physician. We highly recommend a specialist such as an ENT, we work closely with Comprehensive Otolaryngology & Audiology who will diagnose and treat the patient's illness, injury or need for surgery. Treatment is reimbursable by most insurance companies.
 
Both must be licensed, certified and registered with the state. Hearing Instrument Specialist must have Associate degree in any field; have earned 60 credits toward a baccalaureate in any field; or have earned Board Certification by the National Board for Certification in Hearing Instrument Sciences. A training course no longer than six months approved by the National Institute of Hearing Instrument Studies (NIHIS); or a training program supervised by a licensed audiologist or registered hearing aid dealer with a minimum of two years experience. Complete and file application, pass written and practical examinations, written and practical examinations required and continuing education of eight credit hours annually in NH and ten credit hours annually in MA.

Promises That Are Too Good to Be True

Hearing aids reviews are chock full of statements that are based on emotion instead of fact – like “I can hear everything!” or “This hearing aid will work for anyone!”  It may sound great in a review, but it’s not that helpful.  Since hearing loss and the auditory systems ability to understand varies from person to person, no review should promise 100% successful results.  Instead, look for honest assessments like, “This hearing aid filtered out most of the background noise,” or “I could hear my wife much more clearly in our favorite, loud restaurant.”  Those are the hearing aids reviews that will be the most helpful. 

At reNew Hearing we will explain what you can expect for your individual loss, life situations,  and the technology level hearing aids you are considering.


Promises of a "Lifetime of Hearing Guarantee" Are Too Good to Be True

It is one thing to provide the consumer with a free software upgrade on hearing aids, which reNew Hearing does. Hearing aids, even digital instruments, do not last forever.

There is a Difference

reNew Hearing®  treats every patient with dignity and first-rate care. We and office staff are highly-trained and exceptionally friendly. We understand that for many, visiting a hearing specialist can be a stressful experience. Our comfortable surroundings and compassionate hearing professionals will ease your fears.  

We take the necessary time - no rushed appointments here - to explain in detail and in plain English not Latin, so our patients can make an educated investment in their hearing.  We guarantee you will be pleasantly surprised by our level of personalized service.

MEDICAL, TECHNOLOGICAL AND SURGICAL SOLUTIONS FOR HEARING LOSS

Comprehensive Otolaryngology & Audiology, Core Physicians
Did you know that the FDA requires Audiologists and hearing aid dispensers to advise patients to receive medical clearance from a physician, ideally an Ear, Nose and Throat physician, prior to fitting a hearing aid? If the patient declines to receive medical clearance, the patient must sign a waiver stating they understand that they are declining medical clearance even though it is in their best interests.
 
The bottom line is, hearing loss is best treated with a partnership between an ENT Physician and Hearing Specialist. There are many reasons why your hearing may not be optimal. Although devices may be recommended in some circumstances, they are not always necessary or the right answer to solve hearing problems. Sometimes, fluid, infection, wax or other more serious medical conditions can play a role in hearing loss.
 
reNew Hearing works closely with Comprehensive Otolaryngology to make sure that our patients have the best treatment options available for their specific type of hearing loss.
 
 


 

MYTHS:

Myth 1:
They are uncomfortable and unattractive Ironically, this myth persists because modern hearing instruments are so well concealed that most people never see them. The styles most people see in public are actually older generation units worn either directly in the ear or in a large behind-the-ear-case. Today's instruments are an astonishing blend of camouflage and miniaturization that disappear behind the ear, tinted to blend with your hair or skin color. They are ultra-light, and you barely feel the receiver as it hovers over your ear canal and delivers natural, vibrant sound.



 
Myth 2:
They will make me look old.
The people you meet may not even notice you're wearing a hearing device. But, you'll notice a huge difference in how you communicate with them. Today's hearing devices let you hear what you need to hear with greater comfort and convenience. They are discreet and elegant.


 
Myth 3:
Hearing instruments are not for me. Not yet anyway...
People who believe they have only slightly impaired hearing make the mistake of thinking that they don't have much to gain from a hearing instrument.

Untreated hearing loss has been linked to dementia (Most common is Alzheimer's disease) and other cognitive disorders! 

If you let your hearing go without aids for too long, your brain loses the ability to help you recognize and hear sounds correctly.
Once this is lost, it might never be regained.  The ability to reproduce certain sounds goes also.  

It's a shame, because they waste years of their lives coping and adapting, and missing out on the joy of being more fully engaged with family, friends and colleagues. The only way to understand what you're missing is to try these state-of-the art hearing instruments in your own home, your own office and your own daily life. If you're suffering from hearing loss, you'll see how these devices can pull you back into the more vibrant life you love, in a way that adapting, coping and older hearing technology cannot.

 Break out of your shell!
Hearing devices can adapt to the environment so you can follow conversations in a variety of situations—restaurants, phone calls, sporting events. Break out of your shell and redefine your expectations of style and comfort.


 
Myth 4:
They cost a lot of money
While some premium hearing aids can sell for several thousand dollars per pair, there are affordable options available in every price range, starting at $595 each. Also, more insurance plans now offer a benefit to help with the purchase of hearing aids and easy payment plans are available. Your Specialist can advise you on the best choices and options for you.
 
Myth 5:
I don't need hearing protection

It’s never too early for hearing protection

Prolonged noise can damage your hearing — even short bursts of sound over 90 decibels can have an impact.

Permanent hearing loss can occur in as little as 15 minutes with exposure to certain sounds and almost instantly with unprotected exposure to sounds generated from firearms and certain power tools. If your hearing is susceptible to any sounds above 90 decibels, you need to take immediate action to prevent permanent hearing damage. Because once permanent hearing damage occurs, it can't be reversed.

What's your daily exposure to noise?

      140 dB

      Gunshot, Jet Engine at Takeoff

      Immediate danger to hearing

      125 dB

      Air Raid Siren, Firecracker

      Pain threshold

      120 dB

      Rock Concert, Sandblasting

      Risk of hearing damage in 7 minutes

      115 dB

      Baby's Cry, Jet Ski

      Risk of hearing damage in 15 minutes

      110 dB

      Snowmobile in Driver's Seat

      Risk of hearing damage in 30 minutes

      105 dB

      Jackhammer, Helicopter

      Risk of hearing damage in 1 hour

      100 dB

      Chain Saw, Stereo Headphones

      Risk of hearing damage in 2 hours

      95 dB

      Motorcycle, Power Saw

      Risk of hearing damage in 4 hours

      90 dB

      Lawnmower, Truck Traffic

      Risk of hearing damage in 8 hours

      85 dB

      Beginning of OSHA Regulations

      70 dB

      Busy traffic, Vacuum Cleaner

      60 dB

      Conversation, Dishwasher

      40 dB

      Quiet Room

*dB SPL is a measurement of sound pressure level in decibels.

Take care of your hearing

Your ears are delicate organs. By taking a few simple steps to protect them, you may be able to prevent hearing loss caused by excessive noise or foreign objects.

To protect yourself from noise:

  • Pay attention to noise in your workplace. If the sound level exceeds 85 dB SPL, reduce the noise level or wear ear protectors.
  • Lower the volume of your television, stereo and iPod. Take special care if you use headphones or earbuds.
  • Be careful not to turn up your car stereo volume too loudly to compensate for noise from the engine or the wind.
  • Wear custom noise filters or solid earplugs if you go to rock concerts or nightclubs. Take a break so your ears can rest, and don't stand near loudspeakers.
  • Wear headphones or solid earplugs for outstanding noise protection if you use noisy equipment such as drills, lawnmowers, etc.

To avoid damage from foreign objects:

  • Don't use cotton wool to protect your ears. Doing so may push wax down onto your eardrum and can increase the production of wax and/or damage the eardrum.
  • Don't put fingers, cotton swabs or towels in your ears. These can also push wax down onto your eardrum and damage your skin.
  • Avoid washing with unclean water to prevent ear infections.

What to expect from a Detailed No-charge Hearing Device Consultation at our Office

You should consult a physician (preferably an ENT) first to rule out any underlying medical condition
At your first appointment with the Hearing Instrument Specialist
Consists of Hearing Testing and Hearing Aid Consultation.
Communication Needs Assessment.
What problems are your hearing loss causing in your life?
Will you need help with the telephone or the cell phone?
Do you attend classes, meetings, worship services?
Can you hear the television well at a normal level?
Do you eat out at restaurants frequently or do you live in a residential facility?

Your hearing specialist needs to know the answers to all this about you and more in order to make the best recommendation.

 
Hearing Assessment
Ear Inspection - to make sure there is no excessive wax or reason to refer to a physician.
Testing – All 11 pure tone frequencies, 125Hz through 8,000Hz, includes half octaves - not the 5 min. required by law - and bone, and speech understanding as a minimum.
Review Test Results – explain results in language you can understand and explain effects of hearing loss on daily life.
 
Treatment Options
While hearing aids are usually the recommendation, they aren’t the only answer. You might need accessories to help you hear better on the telephone, cell phone, to listen to television more easily or to hear a companion’s voice in a crowded place. In fact, hearing aids might not be the answer for you. Some other assistive listening device may work better in your situation. Again, your hearing specialist can best advise you.

Demonstration
Just like a test drive, a demonstration of hearing aids programmed for your hearing loss is the best way to experience what it would be like to wear hearing aids. You have the option of purchasing the aids with a 100% money back guarantee to try them out in your own surroundings with your family and friends for 45 to 90 days!

Internet Sales Policy

Hearing aids are medical devices, and as such they need to be prescribed and fitted by someone trained and qualified to do this. Buying a hearing aid without an initial face-to-face consultation, professional fitting, and subsequent follow-ups could result in you purchasing an ineffective hearing instrument for your loss, or worse, damaging your hearing further. Additionally the consultation includes an examination which can highlight other serious ear health conditions. For these reasons, reNew Hearing does not endorse Internet Retailers who will sell instruments to customers without a face-to-face consultation, and most hearing aid manufacturers will not supply those retailers.

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