Frequently Asked Questions - Hearing
WHY DOES THE EYE MDS HAVE A HEARING PROGRAM?
Hearing loss is one of the most common chronic health problems facing older adults. The Eye MDs is committed to enhancing your quality of life by providing both ocular and hearing services.
HOW COMMON IS HEARING LOSS?
More than 30 million Americans suffer from hearing loss, and as many as 80%, or 24 million people, are either undiagnosed or untreated. As our population continues to age, the problem is increasing.
WILL MY FAMILY DOCTOR TELL ME I HAVE A HEARING PROBLEM?
Unfortunately, statistics suggest that only about 15% of family doctors address hearing loss. The onset of symptoms is gradual and your family doctor is likely to be concerned about other immediate health issues. As specialists in vision care, we are acutely aware of the importance of evaluating and treating sensory losses that affect everyday living. To make sure your hearing is properly addressed, schedule a comprehensive hearing evaluation with Doctor Todd Burdette at The Eye MDs.
WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT DURING A HEARING EVALUATION?
In general, most hearing centers perform some variation of the standard air bone and speech testing. The Eye MDs uses state-of-the-art equipment to perform a comprehensive audiogram. The audiogram measures your ability to hear pure tones at various frequencies and to hear and understand speech. In addition, our hearing specialist will obtain a detailed history of your experience (if any) with classic symptoms of hearing loss and any sudden or unusual progression that would indicate the need for an evaluation by a specialist in otology. Test results, recommendations and treatment options will be reviewed with you by our hearing specialist in complete detail. Testing is performed in a comfortable setting and takes 45 to 50 minutes.
WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT AFTER THE COMPREHENSIVE HEARING EXAMINATION?
After the exam, our sophisticated equipment will generate a detailed report which the hearing specialist will interpret and then explain the relevant findings to you. The audiologist will answer any questions you may have and make recommendations based on your unique test results. After the examination, you should have a clear understanding of your hearing capabilities and your treatment options.
IF I HAVE HEARING LOSS, WILL I NEED HEARING AIDS?
Every case of hearing loss is different. For approximately 90% of all cases, hearing instruments of some kind are the only treatment option because the problem is not medically or surgically correctable or reversible. In some cases, further consultation by a specialist in ENT/Otology is appropriate. Our hearing specialist will discuss this with you following your examination.
CAN’T I JUST GET BY WITHOUT HEARING AIDS?
Untreated hearing loss is more noticeable than you may think. Clinical studies show that untreated hearing loss dramatically worsens quality of life for you and those closest to you. All miscommunication is noticeable to others and can lead to negative behavioral changes. Many people with untreated hearing loss gradually withdraw from activities they enjoy, leading to isolation and depression.
AREN’T HEARING AIDS UNSIGHTLY AND UNCOMFORTABLE?
At The Eye MDs, 85% of first-time users are fit with hearing aids that are virtually invisible and exceptionally comfortable. This is primarily due to our access to the latest digital technology which utilizes miniature components. People who have been wearing older style hearing aids are delighted when they try our newer, smaller, lighter hearing aids – with the added benefit of delivering clearer sound.
WHY SHOULD I CHOOSE THE EYE MDS INSTEAD OF SOME OTHER LOCAL HEARING AID STORE?
Simply stated – “Vision and hearing go together.” We are different! Franchise hearing aid dealers typically offer products from just one hearing aid manufacturer, thus they have few options available for you. The Eye MDs is a medical practice, not a hearing aid franchise. We have access to products offered by multiple hearing aid manufacturers. This allows us to help you select the hearing aid that meets your unique hearing loss needs. We use the finest technology available, first-rate clinical staff and the combination of care for your eyes and ears under the watchful eye of your trusted doctor.
HOW DO I KNOW WHICH HEARING AIDS ARE RIGHT FOR ME?
The experienced hearing specialist at The Eye MDs will help you select the best hearing aid style and fit based on your lifestyle needs and hearing loss. You’ll also be thoroughly instructed on how to use and maintain the hearing aids to achieve the best possible results.
CAN I TRY HEARING AIDS TO SEE IF THEY ARE RIGHT FOR ME?
Absolutely. The Eye MDs has a 60 day trial period. If you are dissatisfied with your hearing aids, you may return them within the 30 day period and receive a refund, or exchange them for a different style that better meets your needs. That is how committed The Eye MDs staff is to helping you see and hear better!
ARE ALL HEARING AIDS ALIKE?
No. The Eye MDs offers a full line of hearing aids with many different features and benefits so we can meet your unique hearing loss needs. Only an experienced professional who is knowledgeable and experienced in a multitude of devices can choose an appropriate hearing aid for you.
WILL I NEED TWO HEARING AIDS?
Because you have two ears, you naturally hear in stereo. Most patients require two hearing aids because most hearing loss occurs symmetrically in both ears.
WHY DO HEARING AIDS WHISTLE?
The whistle associated with hearing aids is called feedback. It occurs when air escapes from the sides of an aid and is picked up by the microphone creating a whistling sound. Fortunately, The Eye MDs offers the newest and most sophisticated hearing technology available. This allows us to eliminate this problem altogether for our patients.
HOW MUCH DO HEARING AIDS COST?
Quality hearing instruments are available in all price ranges at The Eye MDs and are competitively priced. We do not use promotional pricing, misleading advertising or sell outdated/discontinued technology which can make the process of selecting a hearing aid confusing – and lead to a choice that may not be right for your individual needs. As a medical practice, our focus is to improve your quality of life, not simply sell you hearing aids. You can be assured of being offered the correct hearing instruments (if needed) at an excellent price. We also offer patient financing for hearing aids including interest-free and extended payment plan options.
ARE HEARING AIDS COVERED BY MEDICARE?
No, unfortunately Medicare does not pay for hearing instruments just as they typically do not pay for contact lenses for most vision problems. Rarely do private health insurance carriers pay for hearing aids.
CAN I DEDUCT MY HEARING AIDS FROM MY TAXES?
Yes! Hearing aids are and medical device and as such are tax deductible. We suggest that you consult your tax advisor to remain current concerning any new changes to the tax law.
Hearing Aids are not covered by Medicare. You can also use your Health Care Savings Account (HSA) or Flex Spending Account to help cover the additional cost of a hearing aid; this saves you money by using pretax dollars. Financing can often be arranges for those who qualify by Care Credit. Contact us today to learn more about payment options.