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Questions to Ask Your Hearing Instrument Specialist

middle aged man receiving hearing test from professional ear doctor

If you've been experiencing hearing loss, then a hearing instrument specialist can help you to find the right solution to improve your hearing. Your first appointment with a hearing instrument specialist covers a lot of information, so you might be feeling a little nervous about your first visit. However, there are a number of things that you can do to make your appointment as effective as possible. It's all about being prepared. 

Don't worry 

If you are particularly nervous when it comes to attending appointments or talking to people, then it can be helpful to let your hearing instrument specialist know in advance. They are trained to deal with all types of patients and can help put you at ease during your appointment. Remind yourself that they are there to help you and to get the best out of your hearing aid. 

Prepare for questions on your medical history

As part of a thorough examination, you'll be asked questions about your current and previous medical history. It's a good idea to write this down, noting any conditions, illnesses, and medications you might be taking. You might think that most of your medical history doesn't have any impact on your hearing, but this isn't always the case. Your hearing instrument specialist will be able to assess what is relevant and what isn't. They'll then use this information to customize your treatment plan. 

Research types of hearing aids

There are different types of hearing aids to choose from. You aren't expected to be an expert on them; that's your hearing instrument specialist's job, but doing a little research can help you. Find out the most common types of hearing aids and their particular features. You'll get to know the terminology so that you're already familiar with a lot of it while learning about your device options. You can also see what other people had to say about a particular brand via online reviews and testimonials. 

The most common types of hearing aids are:

  • In the ear (ITE)
  • Behind the ear (BTE)
  • In the canal (ITC)

If you have a friend on a relative that uses a hearing aid, ask them about it. What type do they have, what are the pros and cons for them. 

Think about how and when your hearing is affected 

People are affected by hearing loss in different ways. It will help your hearing instrument specialist to know more about how and when you feel you are most affected. For example, some people have difficulty hearing the TV or someone on the phone, but can still hear people talking to them pretty well. 

Once your hearing instrument specialist gets to know you and your lifestyle, they'll be able to make the best recommendation for you. 

Write down some questions to ask

It's easy to forget to ask a question when you're in an appointment. There's so much information to take; you want to be sure that your questions are asked. Don't worry if you have a lot of questions or be embarrassed to ask something because you think it's a stupid question. Every question you have about your hearing and hearing aid is relevant. 

You may want to ask how to care for your hearing aid, clean it and what to do if you have an issue develops. Take your pad and pen with you too, that way you can write down any information you need to remember. If you need them to repeat any information for you, don't be afraid to ask. 

Have your ears cleaned

Your first appointment with your hearing instrument specialist will involve tests to check on the level of hearing loss you're living with. If you have a lot of build-up of wax, this could affect the results of the test. A lot of wax can affect the volume, tone, and pitch of any noises coming into the ear. You want everything nice and clean to get the most accurate results possible. 

The best thing to do is to have your ears cleaned before you attend your first appointment. Ask a pharmacist for some drops that can gently remove earwax over a number of days, or if you have a particularly large build-up of ear wax, have them cleaned professionally. Never attempt to clean your inner ear yourself, as you could do damage.

Preparing for your appointment with your hearing instrument specialist helps you to get the best treatment. All it takes is a little planning so that they have all the information they need to customize your treatment plan, and you are happy with the amount of information and advice they have given.

If you would like to set up an appointment with one of our hearing instrument specialists, or learn more about Sound Choice Hearing, contact us today at 505-341-1300.