Updated: Nov 24, 2020
by Dr. Todd Decker
Before you purchase a hearing device, please consider these steps to insure you get the correct hearing device, expert advice, and service for you!
1. Carefully select a provider.
The number one thing to remember is that the value you get out of your hearing aid is based on the skills and abilities of your hearing health professional. Audiologists and hearing instrument specialists are both licensed to sell hearing aids, but audiologists hold a master’s or doctoral degree.
2. Have your hearing tested.
During your visit with an audiologist, you should be given a hearing test in a soundproof booth which will tell the audiologist what type of hearing loss you may have. Not all devices will fit every person or every degree of hearing loss - these are custom fit devices, it’s not one size fits all.
3. Ask about Real Ear Measurement.
The primary purpose of real ear measurements is to measure the individual performance of a hearing instrument while in the patient’s ear to ensure that sounds are comfortable, tolerable and are matching their prescription. Fitting hearing aids without real ear measurement is like throwing darts blindfolded. To get the most precise fitting possible, make sure your audiologist is using real ear measurement.
4. Get it in writing.
Get a signed copy of a contract that outlines what you are buying - the model and make of hearing aid, the price, trial period and nonrefundable fees as well as the warranty. Most clinics allow a trial period for you to try your new hearing aids in many different situations to ensure they are right for you.
5. Make your audiologist work for you.
It is your audiologist’s job to make sure your devices are working properly for you. If during your trial period you aren’t sure about their effectiveness, ask to switch to a new style to see if they work better. Follow up visits are a must to ensure your hearing aids fit the best possible for your specific needs.
6. Make sure the provider is full service.
Does your audiologist offer hearing healthcare for all ages? Do their services include testing, wax removals and Tinnitus relief? What about an in-house repair lab? Double check that the audiologist you choose will be there when you need them after the sale.
7. Ask for a referral!
Physicians and current patients are a great way to find out what audiologist is right for you. Look for an audiologist that offers a professional medical clinic with a dedicated team providing hearing healthcare.
Hearing aids are an investment in your quality of life. Make sure you’re getting the most out of your audiologist.