Audiology and Hearing Aid Services
At Audiologists Northwest, we take pride in the range of hearing care services we provide our patients. We understand how important hearing is to your everyday life, which is why we have the following line-up of services to address your hearing care needs.
Earwax can be a nuisance if it fails to disperse through normal means like washing. While earwax naturally occurs to catch dust and debris before it reaches the eardrum, too much buildup can become a problem. Audiologists Northwest personnel can quickly and safely remove earwax.
Cochlear Implant Assessments, Activations & Mapping. Cochlear implants are surgically implanted medical devices that replace the function of the inner ear (cochlear) and are designed to mimic natural hearing.
Cochlear implants help adults with sloping moderate to profound hearing loss in both ears, or children 12 months or older with severe to profound hearing loss in both ears and are not receiving enough benefit when using hearing aids. For some people, using a hearing aid(s) with a severe to profound hearing loss can be like listening to a loud, badly tuned radio. You may hear parts of what is being said and it may be loud enough, but the words are not clear.
For many people, cochlear implants can:
- Give you access to the sounds you're missing
- Provide greater sound clarity
- Improve hearing in noise
- Help you understand speech
- Increase hearing satisfaction and improve the quality of life
Custom Earmolds and Earplugs
Earmolds are the plastic pieces made to exactly fit the outside of your pinna or outer ear structure. The earmold holds a hearing aid or hearing protection device. Many people use earmold hearing aids that have an external battery supply.
Earplugs are inserted into the ear for protection. They are made by inserting soft rubber into the ear and allowing it to harden slightly. The result is a perfect cast of your ear canal up to the eardrum.
Diagnostic Audiologic Evaluations
The first step toward better hearing is the hearing test. This simple, but detailed, initial test gives audiologists the information needed to recommend a solution for hearing problems. Since there are many causes and degrees of hearing loss, further evaluation is often recommended.
The diagnostic evaluation goes beyond the hearing test by testing bone conduction of sound, physical structures of the ear, and an auditory nerve test. It also your ability to hear and recognize various speech sounds.
Hearing Aid Evaluation and Selection
Hearing loss is a major medical problem throughout the country. Most hearing loss occurs over time, and, at some point, people realize it is affecting their lives adversely. The evaluation process for hearing aids involves more than tests. Which devices are right for you? Can you use the smallest products? What are the choices? All these are answered in the evaluation, which includes details of your hearing environment and special circumstances of your abilities.
Hearing Aid Dispensing and Fitting
Like an evaluation for hearing devices, the fitting process involves a lot more than putting a hearing aid into your ear for the first time. Audiologists Northwest personnel offer a complete service of fitting your hearing aid but also testing it. Fitting is not a one-time visit but a series of tests and adjustments to make sure the device is working optimally.
Fitting involves choosing the right device with the right accessories and features. Today’s hearing aids are small marvels of computing technology. All features may or may not be right for you. The dispensing process lets you see and hear the various units and decide, with our help, which is right for you.
Hearing Aid Repairs
Every electronic device is subject to wear and tear. Small wires, plastic parts and screws can become loosened in use. We can repair hearing aids of all styles here at the office or send them to authorized repair centers.
Sometimes, the unit needs an adjustment or battery. Whether the repair is small or extensive, our audiologists can find the problem quickly.
Industrial Hearing Screenings
Every industrial employer is required to help protect the hearing of employees. They must dispense or have available hearing protection products. Part of this protection is periodic hearing testing, known as industrial hearing screening. The purpose is to detect hearing loss in individuals and to find areas in the facility where noise could be reduced.
Audiologists Northwest can set up hearing testing in plants and warehouses. Employee testing is quick and easy, and results are available right away. Contact our office for more details.
Live Speech Mapping
When people start to experience hearing loss, they often have difficulty understanding normal speech. Audiologists are specially trained to conduct speech mapping. The process involves computer tracking of speech sounds you can and cannot hear in various environments. For the test, bring a friend or relative whose voice is well known to you. This allows a very accurate measure of your ability to recognize various words and phrases.
Live speech mapping uses microphones and earphones to show graphically which hearing aid products can best help with normal speech recognition.
Musician's Earplugs and Monitors
Musicians are in a unique situation: they need hearing protection (especially in the loudest venues), but they also need to hear all the music as it is played. Special ear monitors for musicians allow all frequencies to come through to the ears but block some of the volumes that damage hearing. Earplugs are available that block a percentage of volume, allowing musicians to choose the pair that I right for their musical environment.
Infants and children to a certain age are not able to understand or verbally express what they can and cannot hear. For this reason, regular hearing tests, in which the listener responds by signaling, are not much use.
Tests are available that determine what sounds are being received normally by the inner ear and auditory nerve in children. Electrodes placed on the head detect what electrical impulse reaction to sound is being received by the brainstem. Also, a probe placed in the ear detects the middle ear reaction to sounds.
Tinnitus Evaluation and Management
What most people refer to as “ringing in the ears” is a condition called tinnitus. Changes in the middle and inner ear, injury or nerve degeneration are some of the causes. Tinnitus is usually caused by a change in the structure or function of the tiny hairs in the ear that transmit sound waves to the brain. The brain interprets these signals as a rushing or whirring sound even though no such sound is present.
There are several treatments for tinnitus available to help you get the relief you deserve. The most common treatment is hearing aids with making features to help block out the noise of tinnitus. You may also benefit from using a noise machine at night when your hearing aids are out. There are also therapies that help the brain do the same thing: interpret the noise as background static and relegate it to less conscious awareness.
SINGLE-SIDED HEARING SOLUTIONS
Minimally Invasive Non-Surgical One-Sided Hearing Options
Single-Sided Deafness (SSD) involves significant damage to hearing in one ear. People with SSD have reduced speech intelligibility for several reasons: The inability to separate background noise from the signal of interest, the lack of binaural summation effect, and difficulties hearing the signal of interest coming from the side of the deaf ear.? While there is no cure for SSD, there are several effective treatment options available to help those who suffer from it.
Mobile In-Home Audiologist Services
Minimally Invasive Non-Surgical One-Sided Hearing Options
Audiologists Northwest now offers full audiology services direct to you at your place of residence. Our premium in-home delivery service includes the following:
- Hearing Evaluations
- Ear Wax Removal
- Loaner Hearing Aids
- Hearing Aid Programming and Modifications
- Assisted Living Device Deliveries (e.g. remote controls, remote microphones, TV streamers, etc.)
- Hearing Aid Repairs (cleaning and checking, retubing, ear impressions for new or replacement ear molds, earmold deliveries, batteries, etc.)
- Musician Services (ear impressions for hearing protection)
- Counseling and Training on Hearing Aid Use
Service locations include: Bremerton, Port Orchard, Silverdale, Poulsbo, Gig Harbor, Bainbridge Island, and Belfair
To take advantage of our mobile services call us at 360-479-4065 to schedule an appointment today!