Hearing aids come in many shapes, styles, brands, sizes and colors, and finding the perfect fit may seem like an overwhelming process, especially because you can’t try them on like jeans at Prien Lake Mall. Fortunately, you have an audiologist who will work with you every step of the fitting process to ensure your devices are perfect for your listening needs.
Fitting hearing aids involves two steps: the physical fit and the programming.
Getting the right physical fit involves choosing what style of device will suit your hearing and lifestyle needs, as well as ensuring the parts that fit in and around your ear are comfortable.
Getting an Initial Hearing Test
The first step in getting treated for hearing loss is to get a hearing test in order to determine your type and degree of hearing loss. Some hearing aids are better suited for some types and degrees better than others. For example, completely-in-canal hearing aids are only suitable for mild hearing loss, and bone anchored hearing aids are only suitable for conductive hearing loss.
Measuring Your Ears
If you get a behind-the-ear hearing aid, which is suitable for all degrees of sensorineural hearing loss and commonly recommended for children, your audiologist will need to measure your ears. They’ll use a small tool to see how long the wire or tubing needs to be to reach from your ear canal to the hearing aid.
Getting an Earmold
BTE hearing aids also come with earmolds. You can choose between an instant dome made of soft silicone or a custom earmold, in which case the audiologist will make an impression of your ear. In-the-ear (ITE) hearing aids also require an impression of your ear to ensure they sit comfortably and won’t fall out.
Your audiogram will use the audiogram from your initial hearing test as well as special fitting software to program your hearing aids to the exact specification your hearing loss requires. This software also measures the acoustics of your ear for a more precise fit.
Second Hearing Test
Your audiologist will test your hearing again, this time with your hearing aids in to ensure you can hear all the sounds you need to.
After taking your hearing aids home, you’ll likely find there are some sounds or environments that are too loud or too soft. You’ll have to return to your audiologist’s office for final tweaks.
For more information about hearing aid fitting or to schedule an appointment, call the Hearing Center of Lake Charles today.