Do you find yourself in a position where you suffer from mild or moderate hearing loss and the fact that social distancing adds to your hearing woes? Look no further than Hearing & Audiology to find a solution for you.
Hearing is an extremely important part of our group of senses, and we at Hearing and Audiology understand the importance of quality of life and being able to use your hearing to function in society.
Hearing is probably one of the most vital senses of any human being. The ability to hear connects us to the people around us. We require our hearing to enable us to communicate with those around us in an effective manner.
Apart from the social aspect, we also need our hearing to keep us away from any danger. and.org.au reported that one in every six people suffer from hearing loss and that 30 000 people suffer from complete loss of hearing – that is a staggering total of 17% of the total Australian population!
Luckily with the invention of hearing aids and our solutions-oriented services at Hearing & Audiology, we can find the right hearing solution for you that suits your unique needs.
What are the Signs of Early Hearing Loss?
The loss of hearing will be different for every individual, but some of the telltale signs are:
When you are battling to hear and understand speech in public places with a high noise level.
If you are having a challenging time understanding what those around you are saying and are resorting to alternative methods such as lipreading.
When you need to increase the volume on your radio or television, but it does not make the hearing clearer.
You might be battling to understand or hear a person behind a counter when you are out shopping.
There is no denying that none of these signs and symptoms is ideal. Unfortunately, they are part of life, and we at Hearing & Audiology can assist with a range of hearing aid options and services.
How can we Help You?
We offer a range of comprehensive hearing solutions to the public, such as:
Apart from our fitting services, we can guarantee after-sales satisfaction by ensuring that your hearing aid keeps performing at the expected pace as time goes by.
Naturally, over time, your hearing will change, and so will the needs of your hearing device. We are ready and standing by to assist whenever the need arises.
Hearing & Audiology has the capacity to stock parts and accessories of some of our popular models on site. Should there be a need to have your device repaired or maintained off-site, we can assist by sourcing a quote on your behalf and arranging for the entire process to be done as soon as possible.
One of our knowledgeable experts will assist by creating a tailor-made hearing treatment plan that suits both your budget as well as your unique style and needs.
We will provide you with all of the options and help you make the best possible choice to enhance your hearing.
Payment plans and financial assistance
Many people have fallen under hardships due to the unforgiving nature of the Covid pandemic on a worldwide scale.
If you find yourself in financial difficulties, don’t hesitate to reach out to us to discuss a suitable payment plan. We assess each instance on a case-by-case basis, and we would love to welcome you, regardless of your current financial situation.
Whether you’re talking about headphones or earphones, there’s little difference concerning the long term damage caused by overexposure.
In today’s world especially, headphones offer our children an escape from the demands of everyday life while acting as an excellent home learning aid.
But, the constant use of headphones is one of the world’s biggest contributors to long term hearing loss.
If your child does use headphones constantly, there are some simple preventative measures you can take to protect their ears from irreversible damage—and as Perth’s trusted hearing specialists, we’re going to explore them now.
Set a safe decibel level
Most headphones are capped at the 70 or 80 dBA mark. This is deemed to be a safe decibel level for listening to music and media.
But, while this is a suitable hearing level, constant exposure to this level of sound over time can cause hearing damage over time.
To prevent this from happening, you should help you child to understand the impact of being exposed to continually high sound volumes and work with them to set a ‘safe maximum limit’ (60% of the maximum capacity is usually the sweet spot) when using their headphones.
Alternatively, you could invest in a pair of headphones that are capped at a lower decibel level than 70 to 80 dBA.
Check for headphone bleed or spill
Another effective way of checking whether your kid’s headphones are up too loud is by listening out for any bleed or spill.
When your kid has their headphones on, if you can hear any sound bleeding or spilling from their headphones from where you’re sitting, you will be able to ensure they turn them down to a suitable level and avoid harming their hearing.
Establish headphone usage time frames
Constant headphone use is not advisable for anyone, especially not children. So, to protect your children from the dangers of constant headphone use, you should set usage limits.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), you should limit your child’s headphone time to one hour a day. You can use this advice as general guidance when setting your child’s usage limit.
As you doubt know, hearing is one of our most vital senses—helping us navigate and engage with the world around us.
When you experience hearing issues, everyday activities like walking, balancing, and processing information can become seriously hindered.
Hearing loss of difficulties are more common than you might think, affecting one in seven Australians each year. But, the good news is, in many cases, there is something you can do about it.
Hearing aids help millions of people around the world improve their quality of life by amplifying sound signals and sending them to the inner ear.
If you’re experiencing hearing difficulties, a hearing aid might just change your life—here’s how.
1. Improve communication
Hearing loss can seriously impair your ability to interpret language, define sounds, and process words. When this happens, communication becomes incredibly difficult.
Communication challenges can make work as well as home life challenging while making you feel isolated from the world.
But, as hearing aids enhance the volume and clarity of your hearing, they will empower you to enjoy conversing and communicating without the struggling to listen. Finally, you can tune back into the world around you.
2. Increase confidence
Constant struggle, strain, and worry can hinder your wellbeing. And, when you’re overwhelmed or exhausted, you can lose confidence, both socially and in your personal abilities.
By giving you the ability to process the sounds around you intuitively, you will have to worry less, expel less energy, and in turn, boost your levels of confidence.
Struggling with your hearing can cause communication to break down with your loved ones.
Feeling tired and shut out from the world may result in you becoming irritable or zoning out, which can have a negative impact on your personal relationships.
Hearing aids will open up the world around you again, helping you enjoy and even improve your relationships as a result.
When you can’t hear, your ability to process ambient and outside sounds becomes a challenge.
Muffled or blurred sounds often mesh into one undefinable blanket of noise and if you live in a busy environment, you could be at greater danger from road traffic and other treacherous obstacles.
Connect with the right hearing aid and you will be able to spot danger a mile off once again.
5. Physical activity
Expanding on our last point, as hearing aids will restore your ability to absorb and process sounds, you will be able to tune back in the world around you—and that means you can get active once again.
With better balance and improved hearing, you will be able to take up exercise and outdoor activities again, without worry, improving your overall health and wellbeing in the process.
The right hearing aid will change your lifestyle for the better—and if you need advice, we’re here to help.
With over 34 years of expert experience and an industry-leading team of clinicians, we will ensure you connect with hearing aids that suits your specific needs down to the last detail.
Ready to change your life? If you would like to book a hearing loss screening test at one of our three WA hearing clinics, call us on (08) 9388 8003 or book an appointment online. Speak to you soon.
Your hearing is precious—and that’s an understatement. As one of your most vital senses, looking after your hearing should be one of your very top priorities.
As the primary organ for hearing and balance, your ears are not to be abused. Although like most of your body’s biological systems, they will experience wear and tear over the years, looking after your ears now will save you from a host of hearing problems in the future.
How to look after your hearing: essential tips & best practices
To help you look after your hearing and keep your ears healthy for as long as possible, here are some essential tips you need to know.
Avoid continual loud noise
Of course, if you live in a fairly bustling town or city like Perth, loud noise is hard to avoid. But, to define loud noise—the potentially damaging kind—you should steer clear of any sounds (speakers, amplifiers, construction or crowd noise, etc.) that cause you to shout. Make a habit of avoiding these noises where possible and if you are exposed to loud sounds frequently, invest in some quality ear plugs or protectors.
Remove earwax correctly
Earwax is a natural substance designed to protect the eardrum and help to fight infections. Having wax in your ear is healthy but an excess buildup can reduce or muffle sound and cause distress. While you might need to remove the excess from your ear canal, using a cotton bud is likely to cause damage to your hearing. That said, if you need to get rid of some earwax, use a trusted home irrigation kit or consult the services of a professional.
Try not to smoke
Not many people know this, but smoking tobacco can increase the likelihood of hearing loss or damage overtime—another solid incentive to quit if you need to. If you’re a smoker, seeking help or advice on how to give up will help to preserve your hearing and if you’re not, steering clear of second hand smoke is also advisable.
Book a hearing test
If you feel there may be any issues (including a distinct ringing in your ear or you have trouble listening to conversations) with your hearing whatsoever or hearing loss runs in the family, don’t live in doubt or fear—book a professional hearing test. Your typical test is painless and non invasive—read our guide on what to expect from a hearing lost screen test and find out for yourself.
When it comes to your ears, you cannot afford to be complacent. As industry-leaders in hearing aid support and trusted local audiologists, we can offer personal advice, consultancy, and screening.
If you live in the Perth area and you’d like to book a test, we’re here for you. Contact us and we’ll be happy to get the ball rolling.
Hearing loss can make life much more challenging. Keeping up with conversations, following along with a movie or sports games, hearing the phone ring, or even enjoying the sounds of nature can all become daunting tasks when you’re struggling with hearing loss. That’s why the hearing aids that you choose make all the difference in your daily life. You shouldn’t have to struggle to hear on the phone, at noisy restaurants, family gatherings, or even concert venues.
Finding the right hearing aid in today’s market can be tough. There are so many companies advertising all the bells and whistles that it can be a bit overwhelming.
So we’re going to tell you what you should be looking for in your next set of hearing aids and review some of the best out there to help you make an educated decision.
What to Look for When Purchasing Hearing Aids
There’s much more to think about these days when purchasing hearing aids. With technological advances comes a greater variety of features capable of fitting a wide range of listening needs. With all the new and improved choices out there now, it can be difficult to make the right decision, so here are a few things to keep in mind during your search:
You may not need a state-of-the-art hearing aid to get the job done, but you do need to have programmability. After all, it’s the primary difference between a personal amplifier and a hearing aid.
Your hearing aid should be programmed to your hearing levels to enhance sounds specific to your hearing loss. Otherwise, all sounds will be amplified in the same manner, which won’t do you any favours. At Hearing & Audiology, we only ever fit hearing aids that are programmable to our clients’ hearing levels.
From behind-the-ear to in-the-ear, hearing aids come in all different shapes and sizes. The extent of your hearing loss may limit the styles you can choose from. Of course, you want something functional in both appearance and performance that will fit into your daily activities. Your lifestyle also plays a big role in deciding whether you would benefit more from a hearing aid behind your ear or in your ear. For example, someone who bike rides frequently may benefit more from in-the-ear devices which interfere less with a helmet and sunglasses. Alternatively, someone who lives a very busy lifestyle and receives multiple calls per day may prefer a receiver-in-canal device with state-of-the-art bluetooth connectivity so that they can stream their phone calls and activate their voice assistant using their hearing aids.
The main reason that people invest in hearing aids is to hear and understand others’ speech, especially in noisy environments. This is where directional microphones may help come in. Hearing aids with directionality are built with two or more microphones positioned at certain distances from each other. This provides a contrast in the arrival time of sound to each individual microphone, which dictates the reaction to those sounds. This way, your hearing aids can target the sound source that is closest to you, such as the person speaking to you.
Most traditional hearing aids use directional microphones to help people hear in noise, although new technology is moving away from this idea and allowing users to hear the full sound scene (i.e. sounds from the front, back, and sides) for better awareness and improved sound signals to the brain.
Minimization of Background Noise
Background noise along with feedback suppression is typically built into all-digital hearing aids. However, it’s still something you want to double-check when making your decision. All hearing aid models come in different levels of technology and one of the biggest differences between the levels of technology is how well the hearing aid reduces background noise. Generally speaking, the more advanced or expensive the hearing aid is, the better its noise reduction features will be.
We live in a digital world where we’re always connected. If you own a smartphone, you’ll want to make sure your hearing aids are compatible with it. This way you can stream your music and telephone calls directly to your hearing aids for greater sound quality.
You’ll also be able to use your smartphone as a remote for your hearing aids, where you can control the volume and other settings.
Battery Options: Rechargeable vs Disposable
All hearing aids are battery-operated, so choosing the right option for you is important. Hearing aid batteries are either disposable (replaced every 4-14 days, depending on their size) or rechargeable (charged daily in a charger). It is often a personal preference as to which batteries you choose. While rechargeable batteries are more convenient and easy to manage, they are more expensive upfront so this is also something to consider. Environmentally, rechargeable is a more favourable option. Rechargeable batteries roughly take three hours to reach full charge, so charging can be done overnight. If opting for rechargeable, you should check that the batteries are lithium-ion.
The Best Hearing Aids on the Market
Hearing aids technology is continually evolving and most hearing aid manufacturers release new hearing aid models every 12-18 months. Below is a list of the latest hearing aids available as of July 2021.
The idea behind the new ‘Oticon More’ is that the brain needs input from sounds all around the wearer, including background sounds, to make proper sense of sound. This moves away from traditional ‘directional’ hearing aids which focus on speech coming from the front. The new ‘Oticon More’ has been trained with 12 million real-life sounds to help the wearer’s brain recognise all kinds of sound in a very natural and clear way, allowing the wearer to hear more in every listening situation. Oticon More comes with hassle-free and easy-to-use rechargeable batteries and in a selection of colours, including a hot pink colour! Oticon More is compatible with iOS and selected Android models, as well as the Oticon On App.
The new Phonak Paradise continues to deliver crisp and clear sound in a number of different listening environments, including noisy ones. A new feature available in the Phonak Paradise is the ‘Tap Control’ which allows wearers to answer phone calls, stream music, and activate voice assistants like Siri and Google with a double-tap of their ear. Phonak Paradise is available with rechargeable or disposable batteries. Phonak Paradise is compatible with iOS and Android, as well as the My Phonak App.
Unitron’s latest technology is the Moxi Blu, which was released in 2021. Moxi Blu hearing aids have been designed to automatically adjust to the wearer’s listening environment, whilst enhancing speech and minimising noise. Moxi Blu also allows for Tap Control features in their rechargeable hearing aids, meaning the wearer can answer calls and activate their voice assistant with a double-tap of their ear. Moxi Blu is compatible with iOS and Android, as well as the Unitron Remote Plus App.
Widex’s latest product is the Widex Moment, which is said to ‘change the game’ by delivering the purest and natural sound. Normally, sound from a hearing aid reaches the eardrum slightly later than sounds heard directly by the ear; when these two sounds are out of sync, the signals mix to produce an artificial sound. The Widex Moment is said to overcome this phenomenon, so wearers hear sounds like they once used to before hearing aids. Widex’s recharger (for their rechargeable hearing aids) doubles as a cleaning unit, using UV light to clean and sanitise the hearing aids whilst charging them.
Signia’s latest product is known as ‘Augmented Xperience’ more easily known as AX, or Pure AX. This product uses proprietary ‘Augmented Focus’ technology contains two processors which work in parallel, with one processing speech, and the other processing background noise. When this is done, a clear contrast between speech and background noise is created. The speech and noise are then re-combined and given back to the wearer; the speech is delivered to the client with excellent clarity while the noise is given back to the client in a meaningful way so that the background sound is enjoyable, not overwhelming. Signia products also use ‘Own Voice Processing’ technology which helps to normalise the wearer’s own voice. Signia products are compatible with iOS products and can be controlled using the Signia App.
Starkey’s latest product is known as Livio Edge AI, and it is one of the first hearing aids on the market to utilise artificial intelligence to provide an excellent hearing for the wearer. Livio AI can track both body and brain functions; it provides a ‘body score’ which is a combination of steps and body movements, as well as a ‘brain score’ which measures social engagement and hours of active listening. The Livio AI also has a ‘falls detector’ which alerts loved ones if it detects a fall by the wearer. Livio Edge AI is compatible with iOS and Android, as well as the Thrive App.
Your Life, Your Ears
Remember, it’s important to choose your hearing aids based on your lifestyle. It’s best to work with a specialist that can help you choose the right hearing aids for you.
We don’t want you to have to live in a world without sound, that’s why our highly experienced hearing specialists are here to work with you and help guide you in this great decision. Book an appointment with us today.
Holidays are meant to be fun and stress-free, but they also often take you to crowded, noisy tourist attractions that make your hearing aid essential, and the last thing you need is to be worried about your hearing aid or finding yourself struggling to use it in a new setting.
We’ve collected seven top travel tips for hearing aid users to help you enjoy every moment of your holiday:
Tip 1: Make Sure Your Hearing Aids Are Working Well
Our number one tip is to ensure that your hearing aids are in great working order before you leave – there’s nothing worse than having to deal with an unexpected fault, especially if it could have been prevented. If you have any concerns about the performance of your hearing aids or require any adjustments, get them done before you leave. You don’t want to be worrying about your hearing aid while on holiday!
Tip 2: Don’t Forget These Hearing Aid Essentials
Make sure you’ve packed everything you could need; depending on your destination these might not be easy to purchase while you’re away. Items you should consider taking include:
Extra batteries and charger
Protective waterproof case
Dryer or humidifier – particularly if your destination is humid
Any other accessories you use frequently
Tip 3: Familiarise Yourself With Your Hearing Aids Settings
If you’re in an unfamiliar and noisy environment, you may need to make use of some features of your hearing aid you don’t normally use. For example, we recommend you practice using any Bluetooth settings your hearing aid has – these are useful for connecting to other devices, including TVs, mobile phones, and computers. Preparation will ensure you’re ready for any situation.
Tip 4: Keep Essentials in Your Carry-On Baggage
You’ve heard the nightmare stories about baggage being sent halfway around the world in the wrong direction and, unfortunately, it does happen. We recommend keeping all those hearing aid essentials we recommended you bring on your carry-on baggage. If you have them with you, they can’t get lost, so wherever you go (and regardless of what happens to the rest of your baggage), you’ll be able to use your hearing aid.
Of course, don’t forget your hearing aids either! We recommend you wear these for both security checks and then on to the flight so you can hear the boarding and safety instructions. There is not normally a need to take them off for security scanners.
Tip 5: Ask About Induction Loops
Many tours, museums, theatres, and other tourist attractions have induction loop systems installed to help visitors who are hard of hearing. If possible, check in advance to see if they have a loop or any other allowances to help you enjoy your experience there; the venue website is often a good place to check. If you can’t see any information, ask – even if they don’t have an induction loop, they may be able to do something else to help you get the most out of your visit.
Tip 6: Contact Your Hotel When Booking
Some hotels have adaptive rooms with special features that may make your stay more comfortable. For example, these rooms may have flashing lights to alert you to a door knock, fire alarm, or ringing telephone. The more advance notice you give your hotel, the more likely they are to be able to help.
Tip 7: Check For Local Hearing Aid Experts
You’ve got the perfect itinerary, packed everything you could need, and you’re having a brilliant time – but then your hearing aid breaks. To avoid this ruining your holiday, we recommend checking in advance where the local hearing aid expert is. Who will you contact if you need repairs or a new battery? Having this information in advance should enable you to enjoy a stress-free holiday – you’ve got a plan for everything.