Hearing Aid Dispensing and Fitting
Following a recommendation for hearing aids, we work with you to choose a hearing aid style, technology level and accessories that will suit your hearing needs, lifestyle, and budget.
The hearing aid fitting appointment usually takes approximately 60 minutes. When the hearing aids arrives from the manufacturer they are a blank slate - there is no prescription programmed.
Hearing aids are programmed at the initial fitting because we require your ears to program them. Various measurement are taken in your ear canals with extremely sensitive microphones. This process is called Real Ear Probe Tube Verification, some more generically called Live Speech Mapping or Real Ear Measurements (REM). Unfortunately, this is a step that is often skipped during the hearing aid fitting process - and it is arguably one of the most important steps of the entire hearing aid fitting process.
Research suggest that only 40% of hearing aid fittings are completed with real ear measurements. At Hearing Solutions of North Carolina, all of hearing aid fitting are completed using Live Speech Mapping. For more information about this process, CLICK HERE
Following real ear verification, your hearing aids will be set to your prescription. For many new wearers of hearing aids the prescription setting may be a little too loud. If this is the case, your hearing aids will be set quieter initially, to give your brain time to adapt to all the new sounds you will encounter. Think of your hearing aid prescription as a target - with practice we will work towards hitting that target. But like any target, we may never be able to hit it. The goal of your new hearing aids is to make everyday sounds audible and comfortable. With practice, motivation, and dedications, the majority of our patient are able to hit their target, reaching their hearing aid prescription. Other require small changes to their prescription even after reaching it. Only time will tell how you will adjust to amplification.
We will explain how to use the devices, how to put them in the ear and how to remove them, how to change batteries and how to care for and clean the devices. It is also a good idea to bring family members or close friends to the hearing aid fitting so they can help remember all the information that is given and be a support to you.
Your post-fitting appointment will be scheduled 1-2 weeks after your fitting. You will be given a daily log sheet to keep track of your wearing hours and daily experiences with your new hearing aids. Be honest about what you hear so that we can work with you to create the best listening experience with your new hearing aids. Your hearing aid fitting is only a starting place; other changes to customize the hearing to your liking may need to take place over a few appointments, as you wear the hearing aids in more situations and adapt to all the new sounds you are hearing.
Once we have determined that your hearing aids are helping you hear better in most situations and improving your quality of life, a long-term relationship has been established. We like to see you quarterly or at least every 6 months to clean and check your hearing aids. Your hearing will be retested annually so we can adjust your prescription as necessary and ensure your hearing aids are working properly.
Attitude is one important key to success with hearing aids. Hearing aid studies have shown that people who have a positive attitude do better with hearing aids. If you, as well as your spouse or family, approach your hearing aid fitting with a positive outlook you will have a much better listening experience more quickly. Keep in mind that it may take some time to get used to the sounds you were missing, and by working closely with the staff at Hearing Solutions, you will get the most out of your new hearing aids.
The hearing aid fitting process is about more than just hearing better. It is about helping you and your loved ones minimized the impact of mishearing has on your life and empower you to be yourself. By improving your hearing, you can continue to doing the things that you love and ultimately enjoy a fuller, richer, and healthier life.