Audiology and Hearing Aids
At Advanced Hearing Solutions, we understand that you have unique hearing healthcare needs based on your interests and lifestyle—and we put your care and comfort above all else:
If you’re interested in rejoining the conversation, Advanced Hearing Solutions can provide you with the appropriate treatment solutions to address your specific hearing loss.
If you’re a musician who demands comfortable hearing protection or an audiophile who seeks high-quality audio reproduction through the use of custom high-end in-ear musician earphones, we can help you select from a range of products designed for your specific hearing needs.
If you work or play in an environment that produces noise levels that exceed safe levels, usually 85 decibels, we can help you choose a product that is designed specifically to protect your hearing.
If you’re tired of your regular mp3 earbuds falling out of your ears or hurting your ears, custom-fit plugs will provide you with a comfortable alternative.
If you’re a swimmer and need protection from water in your ears, we provide custom-fit plugs in a variety of colors and designs. And they float, making them almost impossible to lose!
Purchasing a hearing aid: A checklist
This consumer checklist is drawn from the Consumer Reports testing and shopping experience, Consumer Reports audiology consultants, and from the resources of the Hearing Loss Association of America, an advocacy and support group. We provide everything listed below and more:
1. Initial visit to our office (meeting with the Auidologist)
- Has convenient business hours.
- Makes it easy to schedule an appointment.
- Describes our provider's training and experience
- Provides information on demand on up-to-date state licenses.
- Offers walk-in repair service.
- Bring a family member, significant other, or friend.
- Take notes during visits.
2. Medical clearance and other basics
- Requires a medical examination, or asks if your ears have been checked recently by an ear, nose, and throat doctor or other licensed physician.
- We will ask you to sign a waiver required by the Food and Drug Administration in lieu of a medical exam. (The waiver allows you to exercise the right to make your own decisions but only after stating, for example, that your best health interests would be served if you had a medical evaluation by a licensed physician before purchasing a hearing aid or aids.)
3. Testing and lifestyle information
- Discusses with you the effect of hearing loss on your lifestyle and relationships at home, work, school, or when going out, for example (or has you complete a questionnaire). The questions should include how well you hear conversations on the telephone.
- Asks about your manual dexterity (your ability to handle small batteries or controls, for example) and/or vision problems that might affect your ability to handle hearing aids.
- Gives you the opportunity to discuss your lifestyle, interests, and activities, which might affect the choice of styles and features.
- Gives you the opportunity to discuss the listening situations, such as noisy or large rooms, theaters, or meetings, in which you have the most difficulty hearing.
- Tests your hearing in a soundproof booth and conducts other hearing tests (to gauge your ability to understand certain words and sentences, for instance).
- Gives you a copy of the hearing test results and fully explains them.
- Discusses realistic expectations (what hearing aids will and will not do).
4. Picking brands, styles, features, and controls
- Mentions which hearing-aid brands she works with, and why she recommends a particular brand for you.
- Reviews the pros and cons (including cost trade-offs) of different hearing-aid styles and features (such as Bluetooth, remote control, telecoil, feedback suppression, noise reduction, and manual-volume control).
- Considers your personal preferences concerning style, aesthetics, color, cost, and features.
5. Picking up your new hearing aid
Our Audiologist conducts a real-ear test to properly adjust the aid as well as other tests of hearing and understanding speech in quiet and noisy environments.
6. Use and maintenance
- Asks you if the aid and/or ear molds fit comfortably, and makes necessary adjustments while you wait.
- Discusses the battery type for your hearing aid, battery life, the handling of batteries, where to buy them, where to store them, and the importance of keeping spare batteries handy.
- Explains controls (for volume and program changes, for instance) and has you practice using them.
- Discusses what squealing (feedback) means, and what to do about it.
- Reviews how to insert the aids, including discerning right from left.
- Teaches you how to clean and store the hearing aids and keep them free of wax.
- Explains precautions, such as not getting the units wet and removing them during radiological and other iagnostic testing.
- Has you practice using the telephone with your aids.
- Discusses why you don't need a telecoil (if your chosen aid doesn't have the feature).
- Outlines a schedule for wearing the aids until you get used to them.
- Advises you to keep track of when and where the aids help and don't help, so adjustments can be made.
7. Financial issues and contract details
- Get a written contract detailing the cost of the aids, the cost of the provider's services, the number of follow-up visits included in the cost, the brand and model of the hearing aids, and the date and place of sale.
- Helps you determine what your health insurance will pay toward the aids.
- Mentions other potential ways to offset the cost of your hearing aids.
- Offers to sell you loss/damage insurance that will go into effect when the warranty expires.
- Explains and offers written information about the trial period, fees charged if you return the aids within the trial period, options for trying a different model, and whether the trial period is suspended if you have to wait for a repair.
- Explains the length of the warranty period and what is and is not covered (e.g., replacing a lost aid and repairing or replacing a nonfunctioning ones).
- Offers to be flexible about the trial period and/or other aspects of purchase.
- Gives you a copy of the product brochure and reviews its contents with you in detail.
- Schedules a follow-up appointment with you to make sure everything is working properly.
- Calls you at home a few days after the initial fitting to see how you are doing.
9. Proper fitting, adjustment
- Conducts verification tests, including a real-ear test. This test, also called a real-ear measure, involves placing a thin probe in your ear while you're wearing your hearing aid to measure the match between your hearing loss and the response of your hearing aid.
- Asks you how the hearing aids improve your understanding of others at home, at work, in meetings, in restaurants, and in other quiet and noisy situations.
- Answers your questions and concerns about any discomfort and/or difficulty of use.
- Makes adjustments to the aids based on your comments.
- Teaches you troubleshooting strategies to fix problems yourself.
- Reviews use and maintenance tips.
10. Using hearing aids with other technologies
- Discusses the compatibility of your aids with cell phones and other cordless phones.
- Discusses using or supplementing your hearing aids with assistive listening devices such as FM and infrared systems, and audio loops.
- Mentions other assistive and safety devices, such as light-up doorbells, special smoke alarms, and vibrating alarm clocks.
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MEDICAL, TECHNOLOGICAL AND SURGICAL SOLUTIONS FOR HEARING LOSS
Medical Solutions-Rancho Ear, Nose and Throat
Did you know that the FDA requires Audiologists and hearing aid dispensers to advise patients to receive medical clearance from a physician, ideally an Ear, Nose and Throat physician, prior to fitting a hearing aid? If the patient declines to receive medical clearance, the patient must sign a waiver stating they understand that they are declining medical clearance even though it is in their best interests.
The bottom line is, hearing loss is best treated with a partnership between an ENT Physician and Audiologist. There are many reasons why your hearing may not be optimal. Although devices may be recommended in some circumstances, they are not always necessary or the right answer to solve hearing problems. Sometimes, fluid, infection, wax or other more serious medical conditions can play a role in hearing loss.
Advanced Hearing Solutions works closely with Rancho Ear, Nose and Throat to make sure that our patients have the best treatment options available for their specific type of hearing loss.
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Technological Solutions - Hearing Devices
In some cases, medical devices are the only answer to correct hearing loss. There are three basic styles of hearing aids. The styles differ by size, their placement on or inside the ear, and the degree to which they amplify sound.
Behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aids consist of a hard plastic case worn behind the ear and connected to a plastic earmold that fits inside the outer ear. The electronic parts are held in the case behind the ear. Sound travels from the hearing aid through the earmold and into the ear. BTE aids are used by people of all ages for mild to profound hearing loss.
A new kind of BTE aid is an open-fit hearing aid. Small, open-fit aids fit behind the ear completely, with only a narrow tube inserted into the ear canal, enabling the canal to remain open. For this reason, open-fit hearing aids may be a good choice for people who experience a buildup of earwax, since this type of aid is less likely to be damaged by such substances. In addition, some people may prefer the open-fit hearing aid because their perception of their voice does not sound “plugged up.”
In-the-ear (ITE) hearing aids fit completely inside the outer ear and are used for mild to severe hearing loss. The case holding the electronic components is made of hard plastic. Some ITE aids may have certain added features installed, such as a telecoil. A telecoil is a small magnetic coil that allows users to receive sound through the circuitry of the hearing aid, rather than through its microphone. This makes it easier to hear conversations over the telephone. A telecoil also helps people hear in public facilities that have installed special sound systems, called induction loop systems. Induction loop systems can be found in many churches, schools, airports, and auditoriums. ITE aids usually are not worn by young children because the casings need to be replaced often as the ear grows.
Canal aids fit into the ear canal and are available in two styles. The in-the-canal (ITC) hearing aid is made to fit the size and shape of a person’s ear canal. A completely-in-canal (CIC) hearing aid is nearly hidden in the ear canal. Both types are used for mild to moderately severe hearing loss.
Because they are small, canal aids may be difficult for a person to adjust and remove. In addition, canal aids have less space available for batteries and additional devices, such as a telecoil. They usually are not recommended for young children or for people with severe to profound hearing loss because their reduced size limits their power and volume.
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Brands and Manufacturers
- GN Resound
Hearing loss shouldn't stop you from enjoying life. It's time to rejoin the conversation. Make a choice to move forward and take control of your hearing—and your life.
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Hearing Protection and Accessories
Advanced Hearing Solutions provides a wide variety of products that will help to preserve and protect your hearing as well as enhance the quality of sound you are exposed to on a daily basis.
- Hearing Aids
- Selection and Fitting
- Musicians Monitors
- Custom Fit
- Universal Fit
Hearing Care Products/Accessories
- Accessories and Batteries
- Mercury Free Hearing Aid Batteries$2/pack of 4
- Instrument Storage
- Mack's Ear Dryers
- Hearing Aid Dryers
- Kidzsafe Earbuds
- Pocket Talkers
- TV Ears
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1. Stethoscope Attachment
Stethoscope attachments are available in a variety of styles and colors to fit the needs of various medical professionals. Permanent fit and removable fit plugs are designed specifically for comfort and functionality.
Also available in thick shell custom earpieces.
Originally designed for use while surface swimming or showering to prevent moisture from entering the ear canal, this earplug is also a superb sound attenuator. Available in a variety of colors and color combinations, with a Noise Reduction Rating of 27 dB. Also available with a waterproof membrane to allow sound and voices to be heard.
Upgrade virtually any stock earbud with iCustom earpieces. iCustoms easily couple with iPod® earbuds (and most other brands) to reduce distracting external noise for better sound. The custom fit also assures iCustoms stay securely in the ear when walking, jogging, or riding. Special colors options are available.
4. Noise Protection
For hearing protection in a high noise environment where basic communication is necessary. The filtered earpieces are often used by heavy equipment operators, motor sports enthusiasts, construction workers, dental hygienists and shooting enthusiasts. Available in a number of styles, colors and materials, with a Noise Reduction Rating of 16 - 23 dB.
5. Recreational/Occupational Earpieces
Designed for hunting and other high-level impact noise environments, this full shell earpiece features a valve that closes in the presence of impact noise. This allows you to hear clearly until the weapon is fired and still have some hearing protection from the gunfire or loud noise.
6. Motorcyclist Earpieces
Designed primarily for motorcyclists to wear under a helmet to help eliminate wind noise, this earpiece is made in a soft vinyl material and features a hollow canal style for greatest comfort. Low profile, canal style earpieces feature a handy removal filament.
7. Pilot Earpiece
Our classic Pilot Earpiece provides custom-fit comfort to the use with the Plantronics MS-30, MS-50 and MS-57, the Telex 5x5 Pro III and the 5x5 Mark IIA communication systems. Features an easily adjustable SwivelComm bar for placement of the boom microphone just where it is needed. Also popular with air traffic controllers and telephone operators.
8. Musician Monitors
A top choice of professional musicians for the best live performances. A monitor of unequalled sound quality, response and reliability with the fit and comfort that only custom-molded earpieces can provide. Feedback is eliminated, onstage noise levels are lowered and vocal fatigue is reduced. Elite Series monitors feature a body heat-activated “flex-canal” to ensure a perfect acoustic seal, regardless of your activity.
9. Performers’ Earpiece
The earpiece of choice for performing musicians and concert attendees, this is also a great option for anyone who needs to hear accurately in high noise environments. Popular with music teachers, DJs, flight attendants, bartenders, waitresses, dentists and dental workers, this is a canal-style earplug that is virtually unnoticeable. The flat attenuation characteristics allow the wearer to hear accurately - but at a safer volume. Can be ordered with a choice of either 9, 15, or 25 dB filters.
10. Custom Headsets
The CR1 is for active individuals who love their music and want to upgrade from stock stereo earbuds. Perfect for travel, exercise, or motorsports, the CR1 is driven by a set of high quality drivers in a pair of full shell custom earpieces. Compatible with virtually any personal audio device. Comes with a 50-inch hardwired black cable and 3.5mm stereo plug.
11. Thick Shell Earpiece for CIC Instruments
This thick shell custom earpiece allows CIC instrument users to effectively use stethoscopes. The earpiece is placed in the external ear, over the CIC, with a cavity on the outside to accept standard stethoscope eartips.
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