There are several steps that are part of a hearing aid evaluation. If you suspect that you might need hearing aids, you will first need to have a hearing evaluation. At the time of the hearing evaluation, a case history will be taken to determine how much your hearing problem impacts your day-to-day life as well as the lives of your family and friends. You will also be asked basic questions about your general health history.
Hearing test results
The results from your hearing test will provide the audiologist with information on which sounds you may be missing or hearing. The results of this testing will also allow the audiologist to make the best treatment recommendations, which might include hearing aids, communication strategies, assistive devices, and/or hearing protection.
Hearing aid recommendation
If your hearing test reveals a permanent hearing loss, hearing aids may be recommended. Your audiologist will explain which sounds you have difficulty hearing, and what hearing aids can do to help. You will get to see and touch different styles of hearing aids, and learn about the benefits and limitations of each type. You will likely be offered a listening experience with hearing aids, so you can see how they look and feel in your ears.
Your audiologist will help you choose the best hearing aid style, features and level of sophistication of technology based on your degree of hearing loss, lifestyle, cosmetic preference, ability to use and care for the devices, and financial circumstances. The final decision on which hearing aids are purchased is your choice, but your audiologist will help you determine the product best suited to your needs.
Once you make a decision, the audiologist may take impressions of your ears if you selected custom hearing aids or behind-the-ear hearing aids that require earmolds. Hearing aids must usually be ordered from a manufacturer and then programmed by your audiologist to meet your specific hearing needs. There is an adjustment period when wearing hearing aids, so it’s possible your audiologist may make additional changes to your settings to ensure you’re getting the best listening experience possible.