What Does a Hearing Aid Specialist Do?
If you’re coping with hearing issues, you may not know where to book your first appointment, From hearing instrument specialists to audiologists, there is a wide range of professionals available to assess your hearing. When it comes to the most well-rounded professional to diagnose and treat your hearing loss, an audiologist has the skillset and expertise to handle a multitude of auditory-related issues.
But what about hearing instrument specialists? Do they have the same education and credentials as an audiologist?
Hearing instrument specialist education
A hearing instrument specialist has a high school degree and is required to complete a certification program. This program educates them on basic hearing loss conditions, such as age-related, and teaches them to appropriately fit individuals with hearing aids. They are also required to complete training hours under already-certified hearing instrument specialists.
Audiologists, on the other hand, have advanced degrees and are educated to understand the full spectrum of auditory conditions, such as hearing loss, tinnitus and balance disorders. They will be able to diagnose your hearing loss.
Testing your hearing
One of the first things that a hearing instrument specialist will do is examine your level of hearing. This is to ensure that they can accurately determine the severity of your hearing loss so they can fine-tune your hearing aids to the perfect level. Hearing loss can be measured with the right tools and expertise that a hearing instrument specialist possess.
However, for more complex cases of hearing loss, an audiologist should be consulted because they have the expert knowledge to take into account a number of different lifestyle factors that could contribute to your condition. They also can typically diagnose the cause of your hearing loss, such as noise-induced, and will be able to recommend the right solution to meet your needs. A hearing instrument specialist is more versed in dealing with cases of presbycusis, or age-related hearing loss.
Help you choose the ideal hearing aid
At the start, you’ll be asked a series of questions about your daily life. This is to ensure that your hearing instrument specialist has some idea of what type of hearing aid they should pick for you. If you’re a very active person, then you’ll likely be recommended hearing aids that can easily be cleaned and maintained so that your sweat doesn’t clog the hearing aid or cause any damage.
The style and features of your hearing aids are important considerations to make. The hearing instrument specialist will be able to talk to you about your options, which may include behind-the-ear, in-the-canal or in-the-ear styles, as well as features that might appeal to you. Common features include directional microphones, Bluetooth connectivity and feedback reduction.
Ensuring your hearing aids are comfortable
Your hearing instrument specialist will also ensure that your hearing aids are as comfortable as possible. This is especially the case for smaller hearing aids that fit inside of your ears, as these will need to be custom-molded to the shape of your ear canal. This will make the process a little longer, but it will ensure extra comfort.
If you feel any discomfort wearing your hearing aids, then your hearing instrument specialist will attempt to adjust them or recommend a different pair for you to try. This is important because if you’re wearing your hearing aids for a long period of time, it’s ideal that you get them as comfortable as possible so they don’t irritate your ears.
Repairing hearing aids
Lastly, your hearing instrument specialist will help you repair your hearing aids. Your hearing aids are devices that are vulnerable to drops and accidental damage. They’re also electronic devices, so faults can occur although it’s very unlikely. Your hearing instrument specialist will be able to perform any repairs in the event that your hearing aids aren’t working correctly and you can speak to them if you feel like the performance is degrading or worsening over time.
At Sahali Professional Hearing Services, our audiologists offer expert and compassionate care when diagnosing and treating auditory issues on the entire spectrum. We will take every factor into consideration in order to provide you with the best hearing experience possible. We have several clinics that you can get in touch with, so please call the numbers below if you’d like to book an appointment or learn more about our services.
- Sahali Professional Hearing Services, V2C 5R9: (250) 374-5767
- Fortune Centre Hearing Clinic, V2B, 2L2: (250) 554-3706
- Merritt Hearing Clinic, V1K 1B8: (250) 315-9688