We believe that Doctors of Audiology have an obligation to help their patients hear in all listening environments: face-to-face, in background noise, on the telephone, when watching TV, and in poor acoustical environments, such as places of worship and other large gathering places. Furthermore, we believe it is relatively easy to make patients hear better, but it is very difficult and takes considerable skill to make them hear their best.
Our hearing enrichment classes are intended to empower our patients.
The first class is devoted to learning about the ear, hearing loss and where along the auditory pathway the hearing loss occurs. Topics such as earwax, diseases and conditions that contribute to hearing loss, the importance of a diagnostic hearing test, and the critical sounds missed by each respective class attendee are discussed. We’ll review your diagnostic audiogram and transcribe your individual hearing test results to an easy-to-understand audiogram of familiar sounds where both you and your family members can see why you hear some things quite well and others quite poorly or not at all.
The second, and most important, class to attend is devoted to communication strategies. Recommendations are given regarding where to sit at public gatherings, how to structure the home environment for maximizing audibility, and positive steps that can be taken to restrict situations in which the person with hearing loss is isolated from conversations. Class 2 empowers you to positively deal with hearing loss and become a self-advocate.
The final class focuses on the rights of people with hearing impairments (as mandated by the Americans with Disabilities Act–the ADA) and methods and means to preserveand protect hearing. Education about ototoxic medications, chemotherapy agents, noise exposure, and general health is provided. Assertiveness training is taught to encourage you to educate others on how to improve the communication breakdown when you are struggling to hear. In addition, we’ll demonstrate hearing assistive technology such as television amplifiers, telephone amplifiers, smoke detectors and alarm clocks.
An excerpt from the article “Empowering Patients Through Audiologic Rehabilitation Classes” by Sergei Kochkin, Ph.D., in association with the Better Hearing Institute: “In short, treatment of hearing loss at Hearing Associates, Inc. is all encompassing, with the provision of hearing aids as only a part of the solution. [They stress] that hearing loss is not an isolated condition limited to the person with hearing impairment. Rather, when there is hearing loss in the family, all family members need to be involved, and multiple strategies employed, in the successful resolution of the condition and its impact on each one of them.”