Hearing is a magical kind of sense. Unlike sight that requires us to open our eyes and look around, or the sense of touch which relies on physical contact, hearing just “happens.” But how?
It may look unusual, but your ear is a highly specialized piece of equipment on your body. Your cupped outer ear catches sounds waves and directs them into a series of complex sensors. As the sound waves travel through your ear canal, they make your eardrum and tiny bones vibrate. Nerves in your inner ear pick up on these vibrations and turn them into electrical impulses to your brain. Your brain can then identify these sounds as speech, music, noise, and more.
If any of these sensory parts are damaged, your entire sense of hearing is affected. This may be because a part of your ear becomes blocked. Nerves may get damaged. Sound waves may not be processed correctly. Fortunately, hearing instruments can often step in to assist damaged hearing functions.
How do you know if you’re affected by hearing loss? The answer isn’t as obvious as you’d think. For many people, hearing loss comes on gradually enough that they continue to think their hearing is fine, even when it’s not.
But there are signs you can watch for.
Regular check-ups are the best way to know how your hearing health is doing. If you haven’t had a professional exam in a while, ask your regular doctor or visit an audiologist. A check-up once a year is always a good idea. Still, there are signs you might recognize on your own.
Common hearing loss symptoms:
So you think your hearing health may need attention. Now what? These three easy steps will get you started right.
By reading this, you’re already on your way. Our site can help you better understand how hearing works and how the types and degrees of hearing loss relate to you. Besides researching online, ask around. You probably know people who can share their experiences with hearing loss. You should also talk to your doctor and get a hearing examination.
Locate a Qualified Professional
Hearing care professionals specialize in hearing disorders. Once they test your hearing and analyze your situation, they devise a treatment option that would best suit you and your lifestyle.
Although a family doctor or Ear, Nose, and Throat specialist can give you a hearing examination, an audiologist or hearing aid provider will be the one to test for and recommend a hearing instrument. Sonic works with a network of hearing care professionals who are licensed, highly skilled, and trained to give you personalized attention and service.
Prepare for Your Visit
To make your visit with a professional go smoothly, be prepared with some information about your lifestyle and hearing situation:
Hearing aids are available in a variety of styles designed to meet different cosmetic preferences and address different hearing loss needs. Your hearing care professional can help you identify which hearing aid styles are appropriate for your specific needs.
|Reciever-In-The-Ear Styles (RITE, RIC)
Fit behind the outer ear with only the receiver in the ear canal.
|Behind-The-Ear Styles (BTE)
Fit behind the ear and direct sound to the ear canal via domes or custom earmolds.
|Invisible Styles (IIC)
Custom option designed to hide entirely in the ear canal, making it virtually invisible.
|Canal Styles (CIC, ITC, ITE)
Custom option placed in ear canal with a portion showing in the bowl of the ear.
Hearing loss is one of the most common conditions affecting older adults. People with hearing loss may find it difficult to have a conversation with friends and family.
Extremely loud noises can cause permanent damage to the tiny hair cells inside the cochlea. Even moderately loud noise over a period of time can be damaging.
Hearing Aids by any simple definition is an electronic device which typically fits in or behind the wearer’s ear. These electronic devices are specifically designed to amplify and modulate sound for the wearer.
Many people with hearing loss don't realize how much they're actually missing because you have become their ears. However, it takes only a short time for them to realize that, without your help, they're in trouble.