Services & Information
We strive for everyone to hear at his or her best ability. Whether you are looking to get tested for a hearing device or need an upgrade to your current one, we can give you the assistance you deserve. All of our equipment is up-to-date and is ideally automated for testing and fitting hearing aids. We even unbundle our products to make them more affordable for you.
FREE Comprehensive hearing evaluations·Hearing aid fittings and follow-up appointments·Hearing aid repairs for all manufacturers·Custom earmolds/plugs for hunting, sleeping, swimming and musicians·Set up Hearing Aids to phone for hands-free talking·Set up of Hearing Aid accessories such as TV streamers and remote micsSue Sherman is a Hearing Aid Specialist and has been in the industry for thirteen years. before she got into the hearing aid industry she worked in the restaurant/bar industry. She is a Montana native, has 2 sons and 4 grandchildren. She is knowledgeable, caring and service-oriented, and is looking forward to helping you hear all that you can hear! Amy Nelson is the receptionist and office manager. She will greet you with a smile and will help you in any way she can. Amy wears hearing aids and is happy to share her story about how they changed her life for the better. She has been a hairdresser for 12 years and is new to the hearing aid industry. She is looking forward to learning about the hearing aid profession.
Wireless & Bluetooth for Hearing Aids
All of the hearing aid brands have introduced wireless and Bluetooth capabilities for hearing aids in the last ten years. Each brand offers ways to connect to electronic devices such as computers, tablets, phones, and TVs.
Apple has patented Bluetooth connectivity with hearing aids that certain hearing aids, like NX from Signia, LiNX2fromReSound, Open from Oticon, and a few others, can communicate directly with the iOS platform that runs iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch devices. This technology is designed to allow the devices direct connection. Android Phones: With Unitron, Oticon, and Phonak hearing aids you can connect directly to your Android phone. For the rest of the brands, you need to have some sort of mic or streamer to connect to the phone. Phone apps for Hearing AidsBoth Android and iPhone have apps that you can use to control your hearing aids. It includes volume control, program changing, and environments. You also have the ability to control which side the hearing aids focus on such as when someone is in the backseat you can put the focus behind you. Some of the manufacturers have created remote programming. This allows the provider to program the aids from their office to your phone where ever you are (must have wireless cell service available). Modern hearing aids are often equipped with wireless capabilities that can be used for streaming the audio signal from your television directly to your hearing aids. In addition to bypassing environmental noises, signals that stream to your hearing aids are filtered through settings that are personalized for your hearing loss. It basically turns your hearing aids into a set of headphones.
Rechargeable Hearing Aids
All manufacturers now have rechargeable hearing aids. All rechargeable batteries are built into the hearing aids and can last up to 4years before they need to be replaced.
Price and insurance:
You can purchase a lot of things cheaply online, including ministry ordination and a medical degree. If you have mild hearing loss, you may be tempted to buy a personal sound amplification product (PSAP) from a website. This product is similar to the eyeglass“cheaters” available at a corner drugstore. Unlike the glasses, which are easy to set up and adjust, hearing devices require some initial programming to fit your loss. The thing you don’t usually get with online hearing devices is a professional fitting. Kochkin and colleagues at the Better Hearing Institute surveyed more than 2000 hearing aid users about their fitting experience and level of satisfaction. The outcome was straightforward: those users who were fitted using a clinically validated hearing aid fitting protocol had greater satisfaction with their hearing aids. In other words, those patients who were given appropriate support and service by a licensed hearing aid professional actually heard better!
About Hearing LossHearing Loss:
There are several types of hearing loss that we categorize as conductive, sensorineural, or mixed. Sensorineural hearing loss is hearing loss that stems from either the hair cells of the cochlea (inner ear), the nerve that runs from the cochlea to the brain, or a combination of both. Sensorineural loss is sometimes referred to as permanent hearing loss because there is no pill, medication, or surgery that can restore natural hearing. Sensorineural hearing loss can be caused by many things including but not limited to: disease processes, older age, heredity, birth defect, and noise exposure. Sensorineural hearing loss is treated by the use of hearing aids or cochlear implants. Conductive hearing loss is hearing loss that stems from something, typically fluid, tissue, or a bony growth, that blocks or reduces the incoming sound. The ‘blockage’ can involve the ear canal, the middle ear, the eardrum, or the bones in the middle ear. Conductive hearing loss is often referred to as‘ temporary’ or ‘transient’ hearing loss because often (but not always) the blockage can be treated by either the primary care physician (PCP), or a physician who specializes in ears (an ENT). They may use medication, surgery, or a combination of treatments.
Conductive hearing loss can be caused by many things including but not limited to: disease processes, heredity, birth defect, and physical trauma. Conductive hearing losses that cannot be medically remedied are treated by either hearing aids or a bone-anchored hearing aid, often referred to as a Baha.
Signs of Potential Hearing LossHearing Loss:
Most hearing loss occurs gradually, so the symptoms may be hard to recognize. You may notice yourself turning up the volume of the television or asking people to repeat themselves. As our hearing begins to fade, we tend to forget how things sound and we start to live in a quieter world. The softer sounds in our daily world may go missing, yet unnoticed. Do any of the following situations sound familiar?
· It seems as though people are constantly mumbling·You ask others to repeat themselves on a regular basis
·Conversations become muddled indecipherable in noisy environments
·Others complain that the TV volume is too loud
·It’s difficult to hear certain voices, particularly those of women or children
·You no longer hear noises like rustling leaves, footsteps, or whispers
·Music sounds less rich or full-bodied than it used to
Learning to Hear AgainHearing Loss:
If you have a moderate to severe hearing impairment, the auditory processing centers of the brain have been deprived of information. This is called sensory deprivation! As a hearing healthcare professional with more than 12 years, I have seen a tremendous difference in how well patients hear and understand after being fitted with hearing instruments. It all depends on the length of time they have suffered from hearing loss. Those who have had an uncorrected hearing impairment of a long duration do not gain as much improvement as those who correct their hearing loss earlier. Why is this so? If a part of the brain is deprived of sensory input, then that information is restored, (i.e. through correction of hearing loss with hearing aids), that portion of the brain that controls your processing and listening skills have to be retrained, and the longer the duration of sensory deprivation, the more important that is. In fact, there is now evidence that a loss of hearing in the ear literally produces physical changes in the brain. Simply having your hearing corrected with hearing aids can and does force the auditory portion of your brain to go back to work. However, you will do much better with some rehabilitation therapy. At Hearing Solutions, we understand this and include counseling with our patients on how to do some simple yet very effective retraining exercises as part of our fitting process. If you have recently been fitted with new hearing aids, you might want to give one of the following methods a try and see what happens.
Obtain two copies of a book.
For 5 minutes a day, in the morning, have your spouse read aloud as you read along in your copy silently. This causes you to both hear and see the words. After one week, start introducing a small amount of background noise. Just 30 days of this will improve and accelerate your listening skills. Studies have shown that your listening skills will have improved as much in 30 days as they would in two years of wearing the hearing aidsalone.2.Another way of doing this is to get an audiobook and a copy of the written version. Listen to the narrator and follow along reading the book. This will accomplish the same thing as having your loved one read as you follow along. Remember to introduce some background noise after one week.
What is Tinnitus?
Tinnitus: (TIN-ih-tus) is the perception of noise or ringing in the ears. A common problem, tinnitus affects about 1 in 5 people. Estimates of patients with tinnitus range from 10-15% of the population (30-40 million people). Tinnitus isn’t a condition itself–it’s a symptom of an underlying condition, such as age-related hearing loss, ear injury, or a circulatory system disorder. The microscopic hairs form a fringe on the surface of each auditory cell in the cochlea. If hairs are damaged, they may move randomly, sending electrical impulses to your brain as noise, or tinnitus.
Tinnitus can also be caused by turbulence in the carotid artery or jugular vein and temporomandibular joint problems. Tinnitus involves the annoying sensation of hearing sound when no external sound is present. Tinnitus symptoms include these types of phantom noises in your ears: ringing, buzzing, roaring, clicking, and hissing. The phantom noise may vary in pitch from a low roar to a high squeal, and you may hear it in one or both ears. In some cases, the sound can be so loud it can interfere with your ability to concentrate or hear actual sound. Tinnitus may be present all the time, or it may come and go.
Although bothersome, tinnitus usually isn’t a sign of something serious. Although it can worsen with age, for many people, tinnitus can improve with treatment. Treating an identified underlying cause sometimes helps. Other treatments reduce or mask the noise, making tinnitus less noticeable. Manufacturers being aware of this condition have done a lot of research and put tinnitus maskers in their hearing aids. Dementia: Seniors with hearing loss are significantly more likely to develop dementia over time than those who retain their hearing, a study by Johns Hopkins and National Institute on Aging researchers suggests. The finding, the researchers say, could lead to new ways to combat dementia, a condition that affects millions of people worldwide and carries heavy societal burdens. The investigators found that if the brain doesn’t get the clarity of the words that leaves them to be more vulnerable to dementia. They also speculate that hearing loss could lead to dementia by making individuals more socially isolated, a known risk factor for dementia and other cognitive disorders.