Here are a few pointers to ensure your experience at the audiologist is a great one. Finding a hearing doctor can be intimidating, but it doesn’t need to be. An ideal audiologist or hearing aid specialist supplies their patients with comprehensive services like modern technology and hearing tests. Licensed practitioners can determine your level of hearing loss in addition to insuring that the hearing aids you use will be the best choice for your condition.
What to look for
- A business with history
If a hearing clinic has been in business for a long time, they likely provide great service and quality care because they have proven themselves to their community.
- Covered by your insurance
While most insurance companies will not cover hearing aids, some will pay for diagnostic hearing testing. If you are fortunate to have this coverage, check the provider directory for your insurance to make sure you’re going to a clinic that is in their provider network. Some insurance providers require you to get a professional referral to an audiologist before they will cover the services.
- Read patient reviews
Do some online research to find patient reviews and customer testimonials that provide you with additional evidence in determining which doctor to choose.
- Ask someone you know who wears hearing aids
If you have a family member or friend that has visited an audiologist, ask him or her for advice on who to see. However, if you don’t know anyone that has recently been to a hearing healthcare professional, you can ask your regular physician to help you find an audiologist. Your doctor will most likely be able to recommend a clinician who will give you great service.
When choosing the perfect audiologist, it’s important that you look for one that has a combination of qualities, to ensure that they are in a position to offer you the very best level of care.
- Qualifications and accreditations: This is the primary factor that must be considered. Your audiologist must be a hearing professional with memberships of the leading Audiology societies and organizations.
- Brand independence: A good audiologist will make product recommendations based on your needs and the quality and reliability of the product, rather than having a financial incentive from the manufacturer to fit a certain brand.
- Proper care practices: An excellent audiology clinic practices proper care standards to patients. This means no queueing for appointments and not seeing a different audiologist each time you visit.
- Hearing testing: An audiologist must be able to conduct comprehensive hearing tests for both, adults and children and for several different purposes, ranging from hearing loss diagnosis to hearing tests for employment, industry and aviation.
- Payment options: Like any good business, a good audiology clinic will have resources to help you select a payment option or plan that is easy for you. This means providing assistance if you have hearing health insurance or need to purchase hearing aids.
- Choices: Every patient is different, in that they have different lifestyles and different budgets for treating their hearing loss. If your audiologist has a wide variety of brands of hearing aids available for you to choose from, you are more likely to end up with the right choice of hearing aids for your particular needs.
- Hearing aid accessories: Anyone who has been using hearing aids for some time would know how important it is to have hearing aid accessories readily available at the audiologist’s clinic. If the clinic you selected has hearing aid batteries and other accessories available for sale or provides the option of buying them online, this could be a huge convenience for you later on.
- Hearing protection: A great audiologist will also educate you about the importance of protection for your ears if you have a lifestyle or job that requires you to be exposed to noise for extended periods. The audiologist should be able to dispense earplugs and protection for people with different needs.
- Hearing aid repairs: Considered one of the most critical of all factors, having an audiologist who can repair hearing aids is incredibly helpful! They should be able to repair all brands and provide free hearing aid cleaning and checks. Some will even make repairs while you wait.
- Follow-up visits: Your hearing aids may need adjustments from time to time, whether your hearing changes or you have new situational needs. Your audiologist should offer follow-up visits allowing you to have your hearing aid adjusted for your listening experience.