Experienced and Trusted Audiology
Audiology & Hearing Services brings quality hearing care to Lansing, MI and surrounding areas. Our staff stays educated and updated on all innovations and new information in the hearing care world. We can provide you with the answers you seek to all of your audiology questions and concerns. Explore our frequently asked questions below.
Frequently Asked Questions:
What is An Audiologist?
Audiologists must be licensed in the state where they practice, and are regulated by the Division of Consumer Affairs. An audiologist may be awarded the Certificate of Clinical Competence in Audiology by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), otherwise known as the CCC-A. With additional training and expertise, the audiologist may receive the honor of Fellow, which is bestowed by the American Academy of Audiology (AAA).
What Types of Tests & Treatments do Audiologists Perform?
Common services and treatments provided by an audiologist include:
- Diagnostic hearing test and evaluations
- Audiologic evaluations
- Hearing aid fitting and consultation
- Hearing aid repairs and maintenance
- Pediatric hearing loss detection and treatment
- Hearing conservation and protection programs
- Earmold and earplug fitting and consultation
- Musicians earplugs and monitors
- Tinnitus treatment programs
- Dizziness and balance testing and treatment
- Ear or hearing-related surgical monitoring in hospital settings
- Hearing rehabilitation and audiologic training
- Assisting in cochlear implant programs
- Insurance billing for medically necessary diagnostic testing and hearing aids, when patients have policies that cover these benefits
How Do I Know If I Have Hearing Loss?
People notice signs of hearing loss but do not take the steps to get it treated right away. Typically, it takes people an average of seven years to seek treatment.
- You may have hearing loss if:
- You hear people speaking, but you have to strain to understand their words.
- You frequently ask people to repeat what they said.
- You don’t laugh at jokes because you miss too much of the story of the punch line.
- You frequently complain that people mumble.
- You need to ask others about the details of a meeting you just attended.
- You play the TV or radio louder than your friends, spouse, and relatives.
- You cannot hear the doorbell or telephone.
- You find that looking at people when they speak to you makes it easier to understand.
- You miss environmental sounds such as birds or leaves blowing.
- You find yourself avoiding certain restaurants because they are too noisy, or certain people, because you cannot understand them.
- You can hear a ringing sound in your ears, especially when it’s quiet.
What Causes Hearing Loss?
How is Hearing Loss Diagnosed?
If you have any symptoms of hearing loss, you should see an audiologist to have a formal hearing evaluation. This hearing test, or audiologic evaluation, is diagnostic in nature and allows the audiologist to determine the type, nature, and degree of your hearing loss. Your sensitivity, acuity, and accuracy to speech understanding will be assessed as well. The hearing evaluation will also include a thorough case history and a visual inspection of the ear canal and eardrum. Your audiologist may also test for speech understanding to see if you are a candidate for hearing aids. Additional tests of middle ear function may also be performed. The results of the evaluation can be useful to a physician, if the audiologist believes your hearing loss may benefit from medical intervention. Results of the hearing evaluation are plotted on a graph called an audiogram. The audiogram provides a visual view of your hearing test results across various pitches or frequencies and the results from your speech understanding tests are used to create a prescription by which hearing aids are programmed, if necessary.
What Are The Different Degrees of Hearing Loss?
After you undergo a hearing evaluation, the results are plotted on a chart called an audiogram. Loudness is plotted from top to bottom. The top of the graph is very quiet and the bottom of the graph is very loud. Frequency, or pitch, from low to high, is plotted from left to right. Hearing level (HL) is measured in decibels (dB) and is described in general categories, not by percentages.
The general hearing loss categories used by most hearing professionals are as follows:
- Normal hearing (0 to 25 dB HL)
- Mild hearing loss (26 to 40 dB HL)
- Moderate hearing loss (41 to 70 dB HL)
- Severe hearing loss (71 to 90 dB HL)
- Profound hearing loss (greater than 91 dB HL)
What Is Sensorineural Hearing Loss?
What Is Conductive Hearing Loss?
What Is Mixed Hearing Loss?
What Is Auditory Neuropathy Spectrum Disorder?
What Are The Signs Of Hearing Loss in Children?
Children can experience hearing loss anytime in life or from issues such as head trauma, ear infections, medications, or genetics. A pediatric audiologist is trained to test children and any symptom of hearing loss should be addressed immediately.
You child may have hearing loss if they display any of these signs:
- Daydreaming often
- Not startled at loud noises
- Frequent ear infections
- Teacher concern or failed school hearing screening
- Complaints that they cannot hear
- Delays in speech/language development, baby babbling
What Style of Hearing Aid Do I Need?
The style of hearing aid you need is entirely up to the specific needs your hearing may require. There are numerous types of hearing aids today that we provide. Whether you need an in-the-ear style or behind-the-ear style, the advanced technology provides you with many options. Hearing aids can come in many different sizes and styles. When choosing your hearing aid, the type of hearing loss, power requirements, budget, cosmetics, sensitivities, and medical considerations are all taken into account. Today, those with hearing loss are fortunate to have the option of sleek, compact, and innovative instruments.
What are Assistive Listening Devices (ALDs)?
What is Tinnitus? How Is It Caused? How is it Treated?
What is the Difference Between an Audiologist & Hearing Aid Dispenser?
A hearing aid dispenser is licenced to perform audiometric testing only for the purpose of selling and fitting hearing aids. They are not required to have 8 years of college experience under their belt as an audiologist is. Although, they are required to pass a state exam to obtain licensure, and the test varies from state to state. Some states only require hearing aid dispensers to have a high school diploma and others require completion of at least two years of college or post-secondary education. They do not receive the extensive training to the degree of an audiologist.