There may be many things preventing you from treating your hearing loss. Maybe you hate the thought of wearing a heavy or bulky hearing aid, or think you can continue to “get by” reading lips and avoiding crowds. For some people, the cost and potential embarrassment of treating their condition is enough to stop them from making their first appointment.
No matter what has held you back in the past, the specialists at Collier Otolaryngology Hearing Center make it easy for you to take control of your condition. We offer FREE, one-on-one hearing testing for all patients who are suffering from hearing loss, helping them to understand their options and treat their specific condition immediately.
What Causes Hearing Loss?
Hearing loss can occur for a number of reasons, and can be mild, moderate, or severe. Although the root cause of your condition may vary, there are three basic forms of hearing loss:
- Sensorineural. The majority of hearing aid users suffer from sensorineural hearing loss. This common hearing condition is caused by damage to the inner ear or to the auditory nerve pathways. Ear infections and loud noises are large contributors to this type of hearing loss, but many patients have simply suffered a breakdown in the tissues of the inner ear due to aging.
- Conductive. Conductive hearing loss occurs when there is an interruption in the sounds traveling from the outer ear canal to the middle ear. Patients may perceive sounds as faint or muffled, and may feel as if there is something “plugging” their ears. If your hearing care professional suspects you have conductive hearing loss, you’ll be referred to an ear, nose, and throat (ENT) doctor to determine the source of the blockage. The most common causes of conductive hearing loss include ear infections, earwax accumulation, fluid buildup, or benign tumors.
- Mixed. Patients who have suffered damage to both the middle and outer ear will typically have mixed hearing loss, or a combination of sensorineural and conductive hearing loss. Many patients with mixed hearing loss can correct their conditions with hearing aids.
What to Expect in Your FREE Hearing Exam
On your first visit to Collier Otolaryngology Hearing Center, you will have a comprehensive hearing test performed by an audiologist. This test is performed for all new patients and will reveal if you have hearing loss, what is causing the problem, and what type it is. Your audiologist will assess your condition in the following ways:
- History. Your specialist will begin by asking questions about your medical and hearing history. Questions may include how long you have noticed symptoms, if your hearing loss has been gradual or sudden, and if you have experienced any dizziness, pain, or ringing in your ears.
- Examination. Your audiologist will look into your ears with an otoscope to check for any blockages or conditions in the ear canal that could require a doctor’s intervention or affect your test results.
- Testing. Next, the audiologist will perform a series of tests to assess whether you have suffered hearing loss, the likely cause of your condition, the degree of your hearing loss, and whether one or both ears have been affected.
- Treatment. If your test results indicate that you have hearing loss, we will explain the specifics of your condition so that you are fully informed before undergoing treatment. If your type of hearing loss can be treated with hearing aids, we will walk you through the types of hearing aids that would suit you best.
You don’t have to live another day without hearing the sounds around you! Our hearing care providers are waiting to diagnose your condition, listen to your concerns, and find the right option that works for you. Call (239) 592-7212 to schedule your free hearing test today!