Frequently Asked Questions
Please select from one of the frequently asked questions below.
+I am not hearing so well and I know I should use hearing aids. But a number of my friends have them and don’t wear them. How can I be sure that I will get a good result from my hearing aids?
To ensure that you get optimum benefit and value from your hearing aids, we consider the following points essential:
- a detailed hearing assessment to clarify the advantages and limitations you can realistically expect
- personalised hearing aid settings matched to your needs
- hearing aids that fit comfortably and are easy to handle
- discreet hearing aids, so you feel comfortable with their appearance and visibility
- affordable prices that include close support after your hearing aid fitting to help you adapt to hearing aid use. With this support, you will learn to tune away less important sounds and adjust to the increased volume provided.
- ongoing support to help you keep your hearing aids functioning correctly
+I can’t afford to spend a lot on hearing aids. Is it possible to get a good result with less expensive hearing aids?
It is not necessary to buy the most sophisticated and expensive hearing aids to get a good outcome. For most people, a midrange level of hearing aid technology will offer many of the features of more expensive technology at a much lower price, without significantly compromising the level of benefit.
Midrange hearing aids come in the same size and shape as top-end hearing aids, so you also don’t compromise on their appearance and cosmetic appeal. We consider they offer excellent value for money, and we help our clients make an informed choice of the most suitable and cost effective hearing aids from a wide range of hearing aid companies.
We aim to make hearing aids as accessible as possible by keeping our prices fair, with strict consideration of the ethics involved.
+I have seen free hearing tests advertised. Why should I pay for a hearing test?
Most hearing tests offered free of charge are a basic screening test. If you are considering hearing aids, or have concerns about your hearing, a full diagnostic hearing assessment is needed. This will include:
- an evaluation of the health of your ears, indicating whether your ears/hearing require medical care
- a detailed hearing test
- a speech discrimination test to assess your ability to hear speech clearly
- an evaluation of your ability to tolerate loud and impact sounds
- whether hearing aids will be of benefit to you
Hearing aids are programmed on the basis of your hearing assessment results. An inadequate hearing assessment will restrict the accuracy of the hearing aid programming and the benefit obtained. A full diagnostic assessment will enable your individual hearing and communication requirements to be assessed in depth, allowing accurate and personalised programming.
All this takes time, and there are costs involved. We prefer to keep our charges transparent and do not absorb the assessment costs into our hearing aid prices.
+I have a hearing loss and need to buy hearing aids. Why should I consult an audiologist when I may be able to buy them online?
We offer the following hearing aid services - which are not available online:
- a detailed personalised assessment of your hearing loss and communication needs, to ensure the hearing aids selected fully match your individual requirements.
- guidance in making an informed choice of the most cost effective hearing aids, with a generous warranty period, from a wide range of reputable hearing aid companies.
- a two month trial/return period.
- face to face support, with as many appointments as you need in the first 12 months, without additional charge. This helps you adapt to amplification and obtain optimal benefit by carrying out expert, personalised fine-tuning of your hearing aids.
- customised ear moulds to ensure your hearing aids are secure, fit you comfortably and don’t whistle!
- ongoing, accessible hearing aid maintenance support service, with no appointment required.
+What sort of support will I need after I have been fitted with new hearing aids?
When you are first fitted with new hearing aids, it can come as a quite a surprise to hear the world again in its full glory! With regular use, your brain will learn to tune out less important sounds and feel comfortable with the amplification you need to hear effectively.
Close support from your audiologist will guide you through this period of adjustment and enable personalised and optimal fine-tuning of your hearing aids. We provide as many appointments as you need in the first 12 months after hearing aid fitting, without additional charge.
We ensure that your hearing aids fit comfortably, that you can handle them with ease, help you maintain them so they’re functioning correctly and - most importantly - that you can enjoy conversations again.
+How often should a hearing aid be cleaned?
Every time you remove your hearing aid/mould/dome from your ear, you will need to wipe off any wax/debris with a tissue. For fully behind-the-ear hearing aids, you will need to clean the output hole in your ear mould/dome to keep it unblocked and clean the tubing as needed with your whisker. Remove wax or debris from the air vent (if present) in your ear mould using the tool provided.
+How often should the hearing aid filters be changed?
You will need to check the wax filter frequently and replace it when it is blocked.
+How often should a hearing aid be serviced?
If your hearing aid is malfunctioning, bring your hearing aid to our counter. We will check it for you and arrange a repair with the manufacturer when needed.
Ideally, hearing aids should be serviced annually to keep functioning optimally. You are using your hearing aids on a daily basis – so they are subject to wear and tear in the hostile environment of the ear. See it like having your car serviced.
+How many years does a hearing aid last?
The average life across the industry is about 5 years. With careful at-home maintenance and the maintenance support provided by our clinic, many of our clients are able to get longer with a life of 7+ years quite common.
+My hearing aids pick up the sounds I don’t want to hear, which makes it difficult to hear speech. Why does this happen?
When you are first fitted with hearing aids, many environmental sounds can seem louder than they should be. However, with regular use, your brain will automatically learn to tune out less important sounds and feel comfortable with the amplification you need to hear speech effectively.
A hearing loss almost always results in a reduced ability to understand speech in competing noise. While hearing aids can’t restore this ability, contemporary hearing aids will help you communicate in a noisy environment. They can selectively zoom towards the strongest voice in front or to the side of you, as well as restrict amplification of noises behind you.
We provide the support you need to feel comfortable with your hearing aids, and ensure you obtain optimal benefit by carrying out personalised fine-tuning of your hearing aid settings.
+I have developed a ringing sound in my ears since I heard some loud music, and am frightened I have damaged my hearing. What should I do?
Ringing in the ears, or tinnitus, is commonly experienced after loud sound exposure. It is a symptom of the ear actively attempting to protect itself from the potentially damaging effects of loud sounds.
Often tinnitus is an indication that hearing protection should have been used to limit the level of sound exposure.
Tinnitus following loud sound exposure is often temporary. If it persists after 24 hours, a hearing assessment is recommended.
Occasional episodes of tinnitus awareness are normal, especially in quiet environments. However, if tinnitus becomes more frequent, a hearing assessment and tests examining the function of the auditory system are appropriate.
+Can wearing a hearing aid make your hearing worse?
As you “normalise” to the amplification provided by your hearing aids, you will become more reliant on your hearing aids and find it more difficult to cope without them. Don’t worry about this – it doesn’t mean that your hearing has got worse or “lazy” – it simply means that the bar has been raised with regards to improved hearing, you have got used to hearing better and have got out of the habit of concentrating hard to compensate for your hearing loss. Your hearing aids are now doing all this work for you – the job they are designed to do!
+Can I wear just one hearing aid?
You can – however…we will recommend binaural (two) hearing aid fitting if you have a hearing loss in both ears and your hearing evaluation has shown that both ears are suitable for hearing aid use.
There are many benefits to binaural hearing:
- Improved understanding of speech in background noise
- Improved ability to localise the direction of a sound
- Integrated and balanced auditory input
This will give you an optimal result and is preferable as your brain adapts to amplification. With a more severe hearing loss, a period of auditory deprivation due to an unaided ear can make it difficult later on to adjust to amplification from that side.
+My baby had a hearing screening test at birth. Do I need to have their hearing tested again?
A newborn hearing screening program assesses the hearing of babies in their first weeks of life. These tests are designed to detect a permanent hearing loss in a child. A pass at birth indicates that the child has sufficient hearing for normal speech and language development.
However, babies and children are also highly susceptible to a temporary or fluctuating conductive hearing loss. Normal hearing enables children to engage with the world around them as well as develop their language and communication skills. The skills established in preschool years are the foundation for future learning at school. A hearing loss during this time can have a significant impact on a child’s developing language and social skills.
Common causes of temporary hearing loss in children include:
- build-up of wax in the ear canal
- excess mucus in the Eustachian tube, caused by illness such as a cold
- middle ear fluid
- middle ear infection (otitis media)
Current research suggests early diagnosis of a hearing loss in your child and appropriate intervention will encourage best outcomes.