Here you will find a list of commonly asked questions. If you click on the question, the drop down box will show you the answer! If there is something missing or something you would like us to add, please feel free to ask! If you are thinking it, you can be sure other people are! We aim to provide you with the most relevant information from hearing aid styles to the maintenance of them to make sure you get the full benefit of hearing aids. We are also keen to share knowledge of hearing loss and patient experiences. As a family owned audiology clinic its important to us that you are informed every step of the way, from hearing loss to assessment to wax removal managment, Wigan Hearing is with you every step of the way.
Frequently asked questions
What is a hearing aid?
A hearing aid is a very small electronic device that is worn behind the ear or in the ear canal. It amplifies sounds so that a person with the hearing loss can hear sound better. Hearing aids have three main components to them: a microphone, amplifier and speaker. Sound comes through the microphone and is then converted into an electrical signal and sent to the amplifier. The amplifier then increases the power of the signals at certain set points and sends them to the ear through the speaker or receiver.Today’s hearing aids are much smaller and more powerful than the hearing aids our parents and grandparents wore even 10 years ago! There have been many advances in digital hearing aid technology that makes them better able to distinguish conversation in noisy environments; many are Bluetooth capable and connect with smart phones and other personal electronic devices we now use on a daily basis.
What should I look for when choosing a hearing aids?
How long will it take for me to adjust to wearing hearing aids?
Adjusting to hearing aids varies from person to person and depends upon how long you waited to treat your hearing loss as well as its severity. Although our ears collect noise from the environment, it’s actually our brain that translates it into recognisable sound. The longer hearing loss is left untreated, the auditory part of your brain can actually atrophy, in which case your rehabilitation may take a while longer. You’ll also want to wear them as recommended.
How long do hearing aids last?
With proper use and maintenance, hearing aids typically last between three and five years. I have seen hearing aids that have lasted a lot longer than that, the key is to keep them well maintained and serviced. We offer extended warranties on hearing aids at an extra cost. We also have a section on the website that shows basic maintenance procedures like wax traps and cleaning.
How often should I remove wax from my ears?
There is no standard course of action for preventing earwax buildup. Most people do not have to do anything unless too much wax develops.
How long do hearing aid batteries typically last?
A standard hearing aid battery lasts anywhere from 3 to 22 days, depending on the hearing aid type, battery type and capacity, and the amount of hearing aid use. We will doscuss the particular type of battery you have on the visit and what you can expect.
Are there different types of hearing loss?
Won’t wearing a hearing aid make me stand out?
Will a hearing aid restore my hearing?
Will I be able to hear in noisy places?
While no hearing aid can filter out all background noise, our advanced hearing aids are designed to reduce some types of background noise so that you can enjoy conversation and improve communication in places like restaurants, business meetings and social gatherings.
What are some advances in hearing aid technology?
Is there an adjustment period to wearing hearing aids?
Will I need a hearing aid for both ears?
Two-ear hearing (called "binaural") is better than one. If you have hearing loss in only one ear, you may be fine with one hearing aid. Age and noise-related hearing loss tend to affect both ears, but your hearing profile for each ear is probably different. If there is a loss in both ears, you will probably benefit more with a binaural solution. Today, about two-thirds of new users opt for dual hearing aids, and as a group they report a higher level of satisfaction than purchasers of a single hearing aid.
Are cheap hearing aids any good?
Inexpensive models are simply hearing amplifiers that will make everything louder (including all the ambient noises around you). They will not, for example, separate human voices from background noises, or hear directional sounds like today’s more sophisticated hearing aids are designed to do.
My friend has hearing aids but never wears them because she says they don’t work – is this true?
My elderly father claims that my mumbling is the cause of him not always hearing me. No one else seems to have a problem. Is it me or him?
I have two hearing aids from the NHS and whilst they are not as big as they used to be, I am still conscious of them and I am sure everyone can see them. Is there anything else I can try?
At Wigan Hearing we will be able to assess you for a new range of hearing aids called ‘invisible in the ear’. If your hearing loss and your ear canal is suitable, these clever instruments can literally disappear. In addition; it is now possible to locate the latest generation of digital circuitry in these hearing aids allowing you to hear as well as you can with amplification.
I'm having difficulty using my mobile phone when I am wearing my hearing aids. Is there anything I can do?
I hear that the NHS is no longer providing free hearing aids because of the cutbacks. Is this true?
Unfortunately this is almost entirely dependent on where you live. There is at least one area in the country, North Staffordshire, where GPs have decided that they won’t invest money in hearing aids for patients with mild hearing loss. One of the other ways to save money is to only offer one hearing aid. If you don’t know much about the benefits of amplification, it is easy to imagine that this is better than no help at all. But, how strange would it be if your optician only offered you a lens for the left or right eye?
What is an audiogram?
An audiogram is a graph, which plots the quietest level that you can hear at each frequency tested. This is your hearing threshold. In a hearing test, the Audiologist will test your hearing at a range of frequencies from 250Hz to 8000Hz. These are listed along the base of the chart, on the horizontal axis. The loudness of the sound is listed up the side of the graph, on the vertical axis. The loudness will be between -10dBHL, which is extremely quiet, and 120dBHL, which is extremely loud.