Common Questions About Hearing Loss - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Common Questions About Hearing Loss

Q: Am I at risk for a hearing loss?
A: You could be at risk if you work or spend a lot of time around noise without protecting your ears. Professions at risk may include: musicians, construction workers, military personnel, firefighters and police officers.

Q: What causes hearing loss?
A: Hearing loss can be caused by a number of factors - the aging process, heredity, disease, noise and build-up of earwax, among others.

Q: Can noise really hurt my ears?
A: Yes, noise can be dangerous. If it is loud enough and lasts long enough, it can damage your hearing.

Q: How do I know if I have a hearing loss?
If you experience a number of warning signs or if people often tell you that you're not hearing well, you may have a hearing loss.

Q: If I suspect I have a hearing loss, what should I do?
A: The best thing to do is make an appointment for a hearing screening with a licensed Beltone hearing care professional. The screening will tell you what you're hearing and what you could be missing.

Q: What should I expect when I get my hearing tested?
A: Your Beltone hearing care professional will first ask you about your lifestyle and hearing needs. You will then be given a comprehensive hearing screening, a video ear exam and a word discrimination test. These will explain whether or not you have a hearing loss and will help direct what next steps need to be taken.

Q: How will I know what hearing aids are right for me?
A: Your Beltone hearing care professional will make the best recommendation for you based on your lifestyle, hearing loss and budget.

Q: How much do hearing instruments cost?
A: The price of hearing instruments varies depending on style and technology selected.

Q: Can I try a hearing aid before I buy?
A: Yes. Beltone offers you the opportunity to "test drive" a hearing aid to see what it sounds like in a variety of listening situations...before you leave the office.

Q: Do hearing aids really help reduce background noise?
A: Yes. Many of today's instruments use directionality and noise reduction features to help you hear better in noisy environments.

Q: What is digital technology?
A: Digital hearing aids convert sound received by the hearing aid's microphone from an analog to a digital signal.  This allows the hearing instrument to produce the exact requirements for a particular hearing loss; always keeping the loudness at a comfortable level.   It also allows for advanced noise reduction features that distinguish between speech and non-speech signals and automatically decrease loudness of those non-speech signals, if needed.

Analog hearing aids, by contrast, are unable to automatically adjust for different loudness requirements outside of increasing or decreasing the volume control.  As a result, many analog users complain of having to constantly adjust their volume controls in order to hear speech adequately in different environments.

Q: What is open fit technology?
A: Open fit hearing aids are designed for cosmetic appeal, comfortable fit and natural sound quality. They do not give the wearer a "plugged up" sensation or distort your own voice.

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