Frequently Asked Questions
Who is an Audiologist?
An Audiologist is a highly trained healthcare professional that has earned a Master's degree or a Doctorate degree in Audiology. Audiology is the science of hearing and balance. They are the only professionals that are university trained with year-long clinical externships or fellowships to specifically identify, evaluate, diagnose and treat hearing and balance disorders.
Why is The Hearing Health Center of Houston the best choice for me to buy my hearing aids?
You have our assurance that all testing, fitting and verification are completed by our experienced doctors of Audiology.
We offer the most competitive pricing on our hearing aids from most leading manufacturers with easy payment options.
Our central location with free onsite parking, no elevators and flexible weekend schedule provides easy access to our services
We offer a free 7 day hearing aid trial when appropriate and necessary.
Our strength comes from referrals from our satisfied customers. We will work to ensure your satisfaction.
Is there a charge for the hearing evaluation?
Yes, there is a charge for the hearing evaluation. Several insurance providers will pay for your annual hearing evaluation. We currently provide in-network benefits for Blue Cross/Blue Shield, United Healthcare, Tricare and Medicare. Be advised, if you have Medicare or require a physician's referral for hearing evaluation, it is the patient's responsibility to obtain the referral prior to the examination.
From time to time, we offer free hearing screenings. Follow our website and social media sites to learn more!
Is there a trial period to try new hearing aids?
Yes, the State of Texas mandates a 30 day trial period, which would begin once you pay for your hearing aids. However, we will offer a free 7 day hearing aid trial when appropriate and necessary.
Why shouldn't I buy my hearing aids online?
We do not recommend purchasing hearing aids online for a variety of reasons:
Hearing aids can actually be harmful to your hearing if they are not programmed specifically to your hearing and ear-canal size.
Hearing aids are not a one-time purchase with no follow-up. It is necessary to follow-up with your Audiologist to program the hearing aids as you adjust to wearing them. These routine follow-up visits are included in the cost of hearing aids purchased in our practice.
When bought online, hearing aids typically do not have warranty coverage as these hearing aids 1.) May have been reported as lost to a hearing aid manufacturer or 2.) May have been stolen.
Will a hearing aid cause further damage to my hearing?
A properly fit hearing aid will not damage your hearing. This is why it is essential to be seen by an Audiologist that has the experience, the education and the requirement to keep up-to-date on advances in technology, thus providing you with the best solution for your particular hearing loss needs.
Why do I need two hearing aids versus one?
Listening with two ears (binaural hearing) helps normal hearing listeners to localize sound, to enhance speech signals, to suppress background noise and to hear with better sound quality (stereo effect). When people begin to have hearing loss, these binaural hearing "phenomena" are greatly reduced. By wearing two hearing aids (when a person has hearing loss in both ears), a person can help restore their sense of sound localization and improve sound quality. Additionally, bilateral hearing aids will help the auditory system to function as it is designed (with two ears). Current hearing aid technology now allows for the hearing aids to talk to each other to help determine where the intended speech signal is in relation to the patient. Furthermore, by not aided an ear with hearing loss, the integrity of that ear's hearing nerve is more likely to decline or atrophy.
What style of hearing aid is best for me?
There are several styles of hearing aids in addition to levels of technology. Your Audiologist will recommend the style and level of technology that is best for you based on your hearing, current lifestyle and listening environments.
What is wireless technology and how does it help?
Wireless technology allows your hearing aid to communicate with your cell phone, iPad, television and remote microphones. Some hearing aid manufacturers require the use of intermediary devices while others directly send sound to your phone. By using wireless technology, the Audiologist is able to send sound signals directly to your ear, bypassing any surrounding noise. When you see your Audiologist, ask about this technology and if it is right for you. A demonstration can be performed in the office if it is appropriate for your hearing.
What are surgically implanted hearing aids?
For patients that have specific types of hearing loss, a surgically implanted device may be appropriate. Some surgical devices sit in the middle ear, others, like the Cochlear Baha or Oticon Ponto help patients with single-sided deafness in addition to conductive hearing loss. Lastly, cochlear implants are a surgical device designed for patients that no longer receive benefit from traditional hearing aids. If you are interested in learning more about these devices, as your Audiologist.
What is tinnitus?
Tinnitus is an abnormal perception of sound, reported by patients, that is unrelated to an external source of stimulation. It can be described as "ringing," "whistling," "hissing," "roaring," "white noise," or "thumping. Typically tinnitus can occur after exposure to loud sounds such as concerts, fire arms or power tools. This In these situations, the tinnitus may be temporary; however, repeated exposure to loud sounds can cause people to have constant tinnitus that fluctuates in severity. At times, tinnitus can impair a person's ability to hear, work or sleep. The cause of tinnitus may be attributed to noise exposure, medicines or blood pressure; however, many times the cause is unknown. Treatments are often limited to counseling, diet modifications, the use of external sound sources or hearing aids (if hearing loss is present). If you or someone you know is suffering from Tinnitus, please visit The American Tinnitus Association's webpage.
What can reasonably be expected from wearing hearing aids?
Hearing aids work very well when fit and adjusted by a licensed Audiologist and when the patient has appropriate expectations. Are hearing aids a quick fix for hearing loss? No. Instead, they are a tool used in combination with modified communication strategies and wireless technology to help connect hearing impaired people to the world. With the technology of hearing aids in combination with your Audiologist's knowledge, the goal is to improve quality of life by reconnecting people to the hearing world.