We are proud to offer comprehensive hearing evaluations and will work with you to find the hearing solution that best fit your needs, lifestyle, and budget. We understand that for most individuals, better hearing means a better life. Dr. Jessica Dimmick, AuD
Hearing Aid Technology
Hearing technology is a useful tool to make everyday situations more enjoyable when you have a hearing loss.
The treatment for many cases of hearing loss is hearing aids. The investment in hearing technology is a significant investment in your overall health. Don't take the chance that you'll receive less than the best care for your hearing aids "after the sale." Hearing loss will be an ongoing condition. See an audiologist who offers numerous solutions for your lifestyle and the satisfaction in your experience will be of the utmost importance. It's true, hearing aids are usually an out of pocket expense. When you are investing your hard-earned money, it should be with the most consideration for the long term satisfaction.
Technology these days can be as simple or as complex as you want. With a wide variety of manufacturers and styles available, Hearing Doctors of the Heartland has a solution to fit your needs. Most individuals have a concern for either performance, cosmetics, or budget.
How Hearing Aids Work
Hearing aids use a computer to replicate your auditory environment into a meaningful signal your brain can understand.
The complication with achieving perfect sound lies in the fact that our auditory sensory system has structural damage. When you want to hear better, a hearing aid is the most common solution for treating your hearing loss.
All hearing aids have the basic components of a microphone, receiver, amplifier, and power source. Digital hearing aids are all going to be programmed by a computer. What differentiates one hearing aid from another? The computer chip inside of the instrument and the design of the hearing aid housing.
Like every type of technology, hearing aids have a billion-dollar research and development industry with manufacturers world-wide trying to improve on today’s technology.
- Hearing aids can automatically adjust to the sound environments for easier-to-follow conversations by collecting the auditory environment in it’s purest form.
- When you have access to the complete soundscape, it lets you, the patient, decide what sound to focus on.
- This feature also lets the brain classify what is important, not the hearing aids.
Hearing sound and knowing where it is coming from helps the brain tune in to your environment. Hearing aids have microphones positioned specifically for the purpose of capturing sound and preserving the cues that tell your brain where it is coming from. This allows a hearing aid user to hear what’s important and still have awareness of the sounds around them.
- Advanced technology will feature a computer chip that can make sound processing decisions quickly. This allows patients to feel more confident and better hear in front of them in the most difficult, noisy environments.
- The more developed the computer chip, the better the ability to preserve important sound information and maintain spatial cues to avoid missing important sounds around you, like conversations happening further away or soft speech happening next to you, instead of in front of you.
A hearing aid can’t choose what sound you are most interested in hearing, especially in complex environments, but the computer chip inside of the hearing aid can distinguish the pattern of speech and give it preferential treatment over background noise.
- Proper selection of the style of hearing aid can make or break your experience. Careful consideration of your lifestyle, preferences, dexterity, and the constraints of your specific ear canal will weigh on this decision.
- The style of the hearing aid will affect sound quality and a natural listening experience should be the highest priority.
- Maintaining your follow up visits with your provider will help ensure that the proper style of hearing aid was chosen before your exchange period has run out.
Our ears have a unique shape to collect sound and funnel it towards our inner ear. The outer part of the ear does apply helpful adjustment to the sound that is collected in your environment. The perfect hearing aid is going to combine comfort, discretion, and performance. The ear is a small space and yet we sometimes need to hold more than just a hearing aid in that small space! If you also wear eyeglasses, safety gear, use oxygen, or have cosmetic preferences, it’s critical that we choose the best fit for housing your hearing aid components.
- Industry-leading rechargeable battery life with at least a full day of power on a single charge.
- You no longer need to change batteries every 3-7 days! The lithium-ion batteries in hearing aids typically last a year and can be replaced as needed by the manufacturer.
In the past 5 years, advancements in technology have miniaturized rechargeable power sources to finally be practical for hearing aids. Rechargeable instruments have made it possible for improved independence and reliability in power supply for all users. Most rechargeable technology can give you a full day of power on a single charge! The advantage is no longer having to carry batteries, buy them, or manipulate the small parts to change them.
- Improved access to phone calls, music, and videos with streaming.
- Optional adjustments with sound control or program accessibility for complex environments.
In a time where everyone carries a smartphone, some hearing aid users like the ability to access features in their hearing aids for improved communication on the go. Bluetooth connectivity between your hearing aids and other technologies will vary from manufacturer to manufacturer and there are limitations on the smartphones that are accessible by hearing aid technologies. Bringing your cell phone to your appointment for a hearing aid evaluation will be important to make sure the compatibility is properly selected with your hearing instrument decision. If you don’t carry a smartphone, it’s ok! The hearing aids are not dependent on a smartphone to work. They simply add features such as phone call streaming, remote control adjustment, or even fall detection alerts that the hearing aids are already equipped with.
Options? We've got them.
We partner with great brands to provide the hearing aid technology to match your needs.
A Solution for the Hearing Impaired
Statistics show that only 22% of individuals who could benefit from hearing aids actually use them. In fact, there are many people with hearing loss that don’t realize that they have a problem until it is brought to their attention by someone else. Once an individual is aware of their hearing loss, however, our audiologists frequently find that people’s concerns regarding cost, comfort, and appearance are to blame for never pursuing hearing aids.
We don’t believe in a one-size-fits-all approach. Hearing testing and hearing aid fittings take precision.
After all, your hearing aids should fit you, not the other way around! With a careful selection of the best features in today’s technology to fit your unique lifestyle, our team will ensure that you are equipped with quality sound to power through your day.
Get the Most Out of Our Unrivaled Hearing Aid Solutions!
Your provider may be one of the 70% of hearing practices that do not perform hearing aid verification measures.
Don't settle for hearing aids without the proper settings and calibrations. This happens all too often, in fact, according to the American Academy of Audiology, it is suggested that only 30% of hearing practices report doing performance measuring verification on these intricate devices.
We follow best practices to unlock your instruments true potential.Schedule an Appointment
Two Ways We Optimize Your Investment in Hearing Aids
If you are looking for the gold standard in hearing care, understand that Hearing Doctors of the Heartland adheres to best practices in the fitting of your hearing instruments using real ear verification.
Verification is how we make sure your hearing aids are working RIGHT for your unique needs.
Validation is where YOU have a say in how your hearing aids sound and how your feedback improves your hearing aid experience.
What is Real Ear Verification?
Verification is the way to measure hearing aid performance to establish truth and accuracy. It is an objective measure based solely on the empirical evidence recorded by the instrumentation. We use verification to ensure that the powerful processors inside of hearing instruments are able to meet a specific standard, giving the patient what their hearing loss requires. Without proper verification practices, there is no way of knowing if the hearing aids are performing correctly. Some providers may refer to this process as “verifying your prescription” because, in essence, this procedure compares the real-time study of sound inside of your ear canal to prescribed amplification required for your individual hearing loss.
Hearing aid verification corrects areas of over or under amplification causing less than ideal performance. Dr. Tyler Duraes, AuD
Performing Hearing Aid Verification
Hearing aid verification is performed by a qualified hearing healthcare professional by placing a small microphone in the patient’s ear canal that works to measure the sound coming from the hearing aid, evaluating how it travels to the eardrum. This process generates a hearing aid report and can identify any specific problems with your hearing aids that need fixing.
Without this measure to program your hearing aids properly, the outcome will be equivalent to using eyeglasses that have the wrong prescription lenses. Sure, you might be able to see a little better, but you still do not see as well as you could. Without proper verification for patients, it is merely a guessing game. Rely on the seasoned audiologists at Hearing Doctors of the Heartland to deliver hearing tests and verifications to ensure you are equipped with hearing aids that suit you.
What is Hearing Aid Validation?
After the verification measurement has been completed and the proper adjustments have been made, it is crucial for a patient to validate their hearing aids or assess their effectiveness from their own perspective. We will fine-tune your hearing aids to your exact preferences, ensuring that the hearing aids are not only performing accurately, but are also comfortable and meeting your needs.
It is important to note that it is a necessary practice to schedule a follow-up appointment for further adjustments after verification and validation. These appointments are another integral part of overall hearing aid success, as we will ask you questions regarding your experience. These questions are designed to provide our audiologists with the needed information to make adjustments to that hearing sweet spot, maximizing the benefit of your hearing aids for you. Your feedback is an essential piece of the hearing puzzle that is being designed specifically for you. Your hearing needs are unlike any other and require a high level of effort to achieve optimal results. We put in this effort because you’re worth it!
What Determines the Cost of Hearing Aids?
The cost of hearing aids varies but is mostly determined by specific features and functions. Advanced features and higher level of performance will come at a higher investment. Buyers should beware of cheap imitation “hearing aids” that are basic sound amplifiers and only turn up the volume on everything- background noise and fire sirens alike! Internet hearing aid sales and mail order hearing aids are also not advised due to a lack of regulation on products not sold in an office by a licensed professional.
Some patients are not interested in hearing aids because they are uninformed about the technology that is currently on the market. The hearing aids on the market today are not your grandpa's hearing aids. Come see what is new in hearing aid technology! Manufacturers have been improving speech in noise abilities, the sound of your own voice and they even have the capability to stream phone calls direct from any smartphone!Dr. Lexi Kirner, AuD
Where do your hearing aids come from?
We only offer digital, programmable hearing aids that were researched and designed by reputable hearing technology manufacturers worldwide. As an independent audiology practice, we have access to all manufacturers of technology. We are not a franchise, and we never lock the programming on your hearing aids with proprietary software. This gives you the freedom to have your hearing aids adjusted, no matter where life takes you.
What will my hearing aid look like?
Hearing aids come in many sizes and styles. Based on your hearing loss and technology requirements, you may be a candidate for any style of hearing aid. Much like we can’t judge a book by its cover- the look of the instrument does not determine the technology inside. All hearing aids will have a microphone, amplifier, and speaker.
Small Chip, Big Power
The brains of a hearing aid lie in the computer chip that powers it. Since the invention of digital hearing technology, hearing aids have gotten much smaller and much more comfortable to wear over time. The miniaturization of hearing instruments paved the way for invisible technology to penetrate the market in the last five or so years.
Bluetooth connectivity between your electronics and hearing aids is now available in several hearing aid technology platforms. If you’re considering hearing aids, now is a very exciting time to get reconnected to life with better hearing!
Will my hearing loss be cured by hearing aids?
The treatment of hearing loss is much like any rehabilitation process; it takes practice to get better. The moment hearing aids are put into your ears, you'll likely be able to notice an improvement. The process of helping you adjust to the sounds you have been missing will often take some time. We urge you to remember to be patient with yourself during this process. Hearing loss usually takes years to develop.
It's essential to work closely with your ear doctor to make sure that you are comfortable while still reaching your goals for better hearing. Though there technically isn’t a cure for hearing loss, hearing aids have come a long way, and today’s hearing aids come equipped with technological advances that significantly improve your ability to hear in most environments.Learn More About Hearing Loss
How can Hearing Doctors of the Heartland help me?
From diagnosis to treatment, and through the life of your hearing instruments, Hearing Doctors of the Heartland provides our patients with the best care in the industry. We started this practice in 2017 knowing that better hearing means a better life, which is why we strive to offer the best care and services to our patients in Iowa, Illinois, and Missouri.
If you have any additional questions about your hearing aids, contact us today. We look forward to addressing your hearing issues with compassion and professionalism.Schedule an Appointment