Hearing Health Center
The Hearing Health Center is a division of the Ear, Nose, Throat & Allergy Center and serves as a full-service hearing and hearing aid clinic. Our audiologist, Dr. Karrie Cuttler, works closely with Dr. Welch to insure that each patient’s individual hearing needs are addressed. We provide services for children as young as 4 – 6 months of age as well as adults and elderly adults.
Services offered by the Hearing Health Center include hearing evaluations, free hearing aid consultations, a variety of different digital hearing aids, hearing aid batteries, and minor hearing aid repairs. Each hearing aid is individually fit and customized to the patient’s specific hearing needs and comes with a 30-day money back guarantee. Financing is available. For more information on our hearing aids, click on the hearing aid tab.
A hearing aid is a small electronic device that is worn behind the ear to amplify some sounds, making it easier for a person with hearing loss to hear and communicate. A hearing aid is made up of three basic parts: a microphone, amplifier and speaker. The microphone receives the sound and sends the converted sound waves to the amplifier. The amplifier then increases the “volume” of the signals and sends them through the speaker.
People who suffer from sensorineural hearing loss, can benefit from hearing aids. Sensorineural hearing loss occurs when the small sensory cells of the ear are damaged from aging, disease or an injury from certain medicines or noise.
A hearing aid amplifies the sound vibrations entering the ear. The extent of the damage to the sensory cells determines how much amplification is needed to enhance a person’s ability to hear. However, there are realistic limits to the level of magnification a hearing aid can provide. If the inner ear has suffered an extensive amount of damage, large vibrations will not be able to be converted into neural signs, making a hearing aid ineffective.
Types of Hearing Aids
While hearing aids may differ in style, size, placement and degree of magnification, there are three basic types of hearing aids.
Behind the Ear (BTE) hearing aids are comprised of a hard plastic case that is worn behind the ear and connected to a plastic earmold fitting inside the outer ear. BTE’s are good for people of all ages with mild to significant hearing loss.
In-the-ear (ITE) hearing aids are made of hard plastic and fits completely inside the outer part of the ear. ITE’s are used for adults with mild to severe hearing loss.
Canal hearing aids fit into the ear canal. There are two types of Canal Hearing Aids: the in-the-canal (ITC), which is custom-made to fit the person’s ear canal; and the completely-in-canal (CIC), which is virtually hidden in the ear canal.
Hearing aids differ in the type of electronics used as well. There are analog hearing aids that convert sound waves into electrical signals to be amplified and digital hearing aids that convert sound waves into numerical codes to be amplified. With Analog hearing aids, fine tuning can be done manually in the office or at the hearing aid factory, but the hearing care professional and hearing aid use are limited in the amount and degree of adjustments that can be made. Digital hearing aids can be programmed to amplify some frequencies more than others allowing more flexibility for the user.
Your audiologist will work with you individually to help determine which type of hearing aid will work best for you. Please contact us today to schedule an appointment.