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7777 Forest Lane, B432, Dallas, TX 75230

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Hearing Aids

Hearing aids are a common non-invasive treatment option for hearing loss. A hearing aid is a small electronic device that is worn in or behind your ear and amplifies sounds so they can be heard better and listening and communicating with others is made simpler. The device consists of a microphone, amplifier and speaker. The sounds are received through the microphone and then increased in power by the amplifier, which then sends the signals to the ear through a speaker.

Hearing aids magnify sounds based on the severity of a patient's hearing loss. Hair cells within the ear detect these magnified sounds and convert them into signals to pass to the brain. There is a limit on how much amplification can be given to sounds, so hearing aids are not for everyone.

Hearing Aids | Dallas | Plano

There are 3 basic styles of hearing aids that vary in size, placement and degree of amplification. Determining which is best for you depends on the severity of your hearing loss.

  • Behind the ear (BTE) - These hearing aids are worn behind the ear and connected to a plastic mold that is placed inside the outer ear and are used by people with mild to profound hearing loss. New technology has introduced a smaller BTE aid that only places a small tube into the ear canal, keeping the canal open and keeping the device from being damaged by wax buildup. It also provides a clearer sound.
  • In the ear (ITE) - These hearing aids are smaller devices that fit inside the outer ear. They can be used for mild to severe hearing loss but are not typically used for children because the device will be too small as ears grow.
  • Canal - Canal aids are the smallest type of aid and fit either in the canal (ITC) or completely in the canal (CIC). Since they are so small, they may be hard to adjust and do not have extra space for batteries and other devices. Therefore, canal aids are recommended for people with mild to moderate hearing loss.

Aside from the different styles, hearing aids also work in different ways depending on how they are programmed electronically.

  • Analog - These aids convert the sound waves into electrical signals which are then amplified and transmitted back to the ear. They can be custom made to fit each patient's hearing needs. They can also be customized for different listening environments and can be changed by the patient. Analog aids can be used in any of hearing aid.
  • Digital - Digital hearing aids have similar features to analog aids, except they convert the sound waves into numerical codes and then amplify them. Some frequencies can be amplified more than others. Digital aids can also be programmed to focus on sounds coming from a certain direction. These aids tend to be more expensive than analog.

You can talk with your doctor to decide which type of hearing aid is best for you. Most manufacturers allow for a 30-60 day trial period to make sure that your hearing can benefit from a hearing aid. They can be a costly investment, but many people are willing to pay the price to relieve hearing loss and be able to communicate with others.

What if I need custom ear plugs?

We make custom ear mold impressions for swim ear molds, hearing protection, scuba divers ear molds, and sleeping ear molds. All ear sizes can be fit with custom impressions.

Hearing Aids | Dallas | Plano Hearing Aids | Dallas | Plano

What If You Need Hearing Aids?

We give our patients appropriate recommendations for their particular hearing loss. What may work for one patient, may not work for another. The visit for obtaining hearing aids is very individualized for each patient and their needs. We work with our patients to assist in the process of learning and adapting to the new experience hearing aids bring. Time, practice, and patience are key to any new experience.

Hearing Aids | Dallas | Plano

What do they look like?

Hearing Aids | Dallas | Plano Hearing Aids | Dallas | Plano

Hearing aids also vary in their size. Sometimes this is based on the degree of hearing loss. For the most part, they have become very discreet and small to fit every patient’s needs. There are many styles of hearing aids, including Behind-the-Ear, Receiver-in-Canal, In-the-Ear, Completely-in-the-canal, and Invisible-in-Canal. Every style is not for everybody, it is based on the degree of hearing loss, the ear canal, and patient preference. Your audiologist can help with this decision.

How much do they cost?

Hearing aids vary in their cost based on their technology level, features, and, sometimes, size. Speak with our audiologist about your options and she can give you an honest opinion on which technology would best suite your lifestyle. We make the patient our primary concern and will never make you feel pressured into a hearing aid you don’t need.

Does insurance cover hearing aids?

At this time, Medicare does not contribute towards hearing aids. There are select insurance companies that provide hearing aid benefits to patients, although there is usually an out-of-pocket cost either way. For the most part, hearing aids are an out-of-pocket expense. Check with your insurance company for Hearing Aid Benefits. If you do have benefits, we will be happy to help you with the claim process.

Hearing Aids | Dallas | Plano

CareCredit offers special financing on purchases of $200 or more for healthcare costs not commonly covered by insurance, including hearing aids. CareCredit offers deferred Interest/no interest if paid in full promotional financing options – meaning no interest will be charged on your promotional balance if you pay your balance in full by the promotional due date. If your promotional purchase is not paid in full by the end of the promotional period, interest will be charged to your account from the purchase date.

With so many options out there, how do I know what’s best for me?

Your hearing loss is specific to you, just like your fingerprints. A person could have your exact audiogram (hearing test results) but have very different hearing needs than you do. We don’t hear with our ears, we hear with our brain. Your audiologist can make appropriate recommendations based on your hearing loss, lifestyle, social needs, and financial concerns, among others.

 

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