3 Questions an Audiologist Can Answer
Being proactive about hearing health is important, yet many people don’t know who to go to when they have a concern or question. Since primary care physicians don’t specialize in hearing, they’re often unable to answer detailed questions about it. In this case, the best professional to ask is an audiologist – a doctor who specializes in hearing loss and balance disorders. Here are three common questions an audiologist will be able to answer for you during an initial consultation or full evaluation.
1. How do I know if I have hearing loss?
Hearing loss that happens gradually over time can be hard to detect, so you might have hearing loss without being aware of it. For instance, among 28 million adults the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders estimates could benefit from hearing aids, only 16-30 percent have used them. Although some people shrug off the warning signs of hearing loss, many people simply don’t know they have it.
An audiologist will ask you a list of questions that most commonly point to hearing loss. Some signs are obvious, while others might surprise you, such as:
- Do you struggle to hear conversation in crowded environments?
- Do you only have a hard time hearing women and children’s voices?
- Do you have ringing or buzzing in your ears?
An audiologist will be able to ask and answer the right questions to determine if you might have hearing loss. What’s more, they can provide the next step – a full hearing evaluation.
2. What caused my hearing loss?
There are many, many causes for hearing damage, but an audiologist is familiar with them and can diagnose which one (or more) contributed to your hearing loss. To name just a few, you could have a genetic condition or disease, damage from exposure to loud noises over the years, a physical defect or injury, or an ototoxic reaction. By determining the cause of your hearing loss, an audiologist can either provide immediate treatment or refer you to the right medical professional that can.
3. How will hearing aids improve my hearing loss and overall quality of life?
Maybe you’re aware of your hearing loss but are reluctant to wear hearing aids because you don’t think they’ll help. An audiologist can provide reasons and proofs that hearing aids do make a difference in your daily life – by improving your communication and relationships with others, enabling you to work and enjoy hobbies and much more. Since experience is the most convincing, audiologists are also more than happy to fit you with hearing aids to test out on a trial basis.
If you’ve had difficulty finding answers to your hearing questions – ask an audiologist – you won’t be disappointed.