Simple Answers to Frequently Asked Questions
A) Approximately how many people in the United States have a permanent hearing loss?
Answer: Statistics report that in any given year, there are 28-30 million Americans with hearing loss. Among mature adults, hearing loss averages one in three.
B) Where Can I Find Out If I Have A Hearing Loss?
Answer: Many medical offices can conduct a screening test for hearing loss. Also, depending on location, some hospitals, and support groups offer a free hearing test, as part of a "health fair." An Ear, Nose and Throat practice routinely performs diagnostic hearing evaluations, and hearing aid
C) If I choose not to use a hearing aid, is there any other type of
amplification device to help me?
Answer: There are many varieties of Assistive Listening Devices to address this question. There are pocket worn systems, used in conjunction with earbuds, or a headset; that will amplify all incoming sounds. In addition, there are products which can be ordered through the mail, without ever seeing a doctor. We strongly advise against this, as an instrument obtained in this manner, has to potential to damage residual hearing. Lastly, for those who only need help in hearing television, there are infra- red systems that work effectively.
D) If I get a hearing aid, what kind of guarantee do I have?
Answer: In our practice there are two guarantees: 1) All patients have a 30 day grace period, beginning on the day they are fitted. If the instrument(s) is not acceptable, it may be returned to this office for a refund, less a professional fee. 2) Also, all of the products we dispense come with either a one year manufacturer's warranty, which includes loss, or a two year warranty, depending on the exact model. Additional warranty coverage can be purchased at any time during the warranty period.
E) Do hearing aids run on batteries?
Answer: Yes, batteries are readily availble for all styles of hearing aids. They can last up to 2 weeks, and are inexpensive.
F) How do I know which style is best for me?
Answer: Depending on the degree, and type of hearing loss, certain styles
are more appropriate than others. By and large, we favor fitting the receiver in the canal hearing aids
G) How long until I adjust to the hearing aid(s)?
Answer: It takes at least 3 weeks just to understand how your hearing is improving. At about 8 weeks, patients are typically very comfortable with their instruments. The hearing can continue to improve, based on the experience you gain from each day's use, for up to one year.
H) Do people always benefit from hearing aids?
Answer: No. Some patients have auditory processing disorders, or central hearing loss. For these patients, the brain is unable to process information correctly, even when it is well heard.
I) I've heard from all my friends that hearing aids end up in a drawer. Is that really true?
Answer: Those comments mostly applied to the kind of hearing instruments that were being fitted many years ago. By far, the majority of first time digital users are pleased with the self- realization that they are hearing much better.
This "urban myth," also has to do with where a patient chooses to purchase a hearing aid. We believe hearing loss is a medical problem, and therefore it is not unreasonable to seek a medical opinion.
J) I've heard hearing aids cost thousands of dollars?
Answer: The cost of standard and mid-range digital hearing aids has dropped significantly in recent years, and will continue to decrease in cost. For the majority of patients, the benefits outweigh the cost, and we believe our pricing is very affordable.
K) Will insurance cover your services and products?
Answer: A patient's insurance is a contract between the patient and the insurance carrier. The patient is responsible for the payment of deductibles, co-payments, any non-covered services and remaining balances at the time of the office visit.
HEAR MD participates with most indemnity insurance carriers and PPO's. As a courtesy to our patients, we will file the appropriate insurance claim form to your insurance carrier.
HEAR MD participates with HMO's administered through the local IPA: Arcadia Health City Health Care Partners Physician Associates.
HMO’s require a referral from a primary care physician for an initial evaluation. They also usually require subsequent authorizations for office follow-up. You should receive a written authorization for initial as well as follow-up visits. Please bring this authorization with you at the time of your appointment.