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Q: How long does a hearing test take?

A: If you are entering one of our clinics for the first time, prepare to be in the appointment for 45 minutes to 1 hour. We start by asking you questions about your medical history and noise history to determine possible causes of hearing loss. The comprehensive audiological assessment usually takes about 20-30 minutes and then we sit down with you to explain the results.

If hearing loss is found, we can determine whether further medical referral to an ear, nose and throat specialist (ENT) is warranted. About 95% of the time, hearing loss is not medically or surgically treatable, but can be successfully treated with hearing devices.

Q: I have constant ringing in my ears. What is it & how can it be treated?

A: The term is tinnitus (pronounced ti-ni-tus or ti-nigh-tus), and it means the perception of noise in the ears or head when no external noise is present. The most common causes of tinnitus are noise-induced hearing loss, head/neck trauma, adverse medicine reaction or allergy and autoimmune deficiency. Learn more about tinnitus.

Q: Should I get custom hearing protection for my noisy job or for running my lawnmower & grass trimmer?

A: Having proper hearing protection is crucial for preserving your precious hearing. Noise-induced hearing loss is now the most common cause of hearing loss. The good news is 99% of noise-induced hearing loss is preventable. The bad news is very few people protect their ears.

Once damage is done to the inner ear, it’s not reversible. A good rule of thumb is if you have to speak loudly with the person beside you to communicate because of noise, hearing protection should likely be worn. How long you can be exposed to a sound before permanent damage occurs depends upon the intensity of the sound.

Expert Hearing Solutions makes custom noise protection, plus custom musician plugs, swim plugs, sleep plugs and iPod plugs. Creating awareness about the prevention of hearing loss is a very important part of our profession. Consult with your local Expert Hearing Solutions staff for more details. If you have other questions, please feel free to contact us by phone or email. Plus, we have provided many links to other helpful websites in our resources section.

Q: How can I prolong the battery life of my hearing aid?

A: Opening the battery door when you remove your hearing aid for an extended length of time is one way. An 8th grade student in Rochester, NY has found an unusual way to save significant money on batteries recently. He found that once he took the sticker off a new battery, if he waited 5 minutes before putting it into the hearing aid, battery life improved by 80%. That means your battery could last 2 or 3 days longer!

Here’s why. Taking the sticker off a new battery allows oxygen to combine with the zinc oxide in the battery. Oxygen energizes the zinc oxide, so allowing 5 minutes for the two to mix means significant improvement of the battery life. But don’t remove the sticker tab from the battery for more than 5 minutes, since when you remove the tab, you’re activating the battery.

Also, don’t keep your unused hearing aid batteries near metal objects, or they might short circuit. Avoid getting dirt on your new batteries by washing up before handling them, and DO NOT STORE BATTERIES IN THE REFRIGERATOR. This once-popular trick not only doesn’t work with today’s zinc oxide batteries, it actually has the opposite effect!

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