We select hearing aids and styles based upon their ability to address your needs and our ability to adjust the devices to optimize your hearing.
We provide all of the styles available from the manufacturers. Different styles work better for different types and degrees of hearing loss. During the "demo" we will guide you to styles that will optimally address your needs.
Manufacturers have developed different hearing aid models based upon the number and type of digital processing features they contain. They do this for pricing purposes. Some of these features greatly contribute to the effectiveness of the instrument. Others have little positive effect. We select models that suit your hearing and pricing needs.
Today's hearing aids are capable of more settings than there are atoms in the universe. Many have the capacity to be customized to your personal needs. They are designed to be easy to fit. However, fitting them properly for individuals requires special skill.
All hearing aids are not equal.
We choose Signia/Siemens' hearing aids primarily at this point. We regularly evaluate the latest hearing-aid technology and are free to purchase from any manufacturer. In an industry focused heavily on sales, Signia/Siemens currently stands out in technological quality. In our experience:
In 1984 Dr. Shlomo Silman demonstrated that when hearing-impaired people wore only one hearing aid, their brains lost the ability to hear speech clearly from the side that was not receiving sound stimulation.
In other words, if you don't use the ear, you lose the ability to hear speech clearly.
When Dr. Gil first opened his office in Walnut Creek, he was shocked to find very low speech understanding scores with the new clients coming into his office.
He discovered, they were all grossly misfit and most were under-fit. (Dr. Gil presented what he believed to be the cause of this common mis-fitting of hearing aids in "The Missing Link".)
He knew long-term sound deprivation resulted in withdrawal, psychological ailments, cognitive deficiencies, and a host of issues that made a person prematurely aged.
Properly fit hearing aids can reduce these deprivation created ailments. In many cases, individuals recover their cognitive abilities with proper hearing correction.
When a person becomes aware of their hearing problem, often they assume getting hearing aids is the proper decision. Dr. Magilen makes a clear distinction between "getting hearing aids" and "getting hearing correction".
"Getting hearing aids", means finding the right model, provider, price, size, and features that satisfy the consumer's taste and budget. The hearing aids are fit with formulas that are primarily based upon "hearing loss" alone. Getting such hearing aids merely requires the assistance of providers who deliver on a trial-and-error basis a variety of devices until the client finds one that is more satisfactory than the rest. The results are generally hit or miss.
"Getting hearing correction", means obtaining the hearing aids and services that optimally relieve the hearing-impaired individual's hearing problems. Hearing aids are selected and sound engineered to optimally address the audibility, neural and cognitive components of the individual's hearing impairment. That requires the assistance of a knowledgeable and skilled professional.
Unfortunately, the hearing-aid dispensing industry is not truly focused on correcting the underlying the problem...it is primarily a sales industry. In addition, the prevailing theory for how hearing aids should be fit, focusing on adjusting for "hearing loss", is also seriously flawed. For that reason it is difficult to find hearing-aid providers with the scientific and technical background to address the neuro-cognitive components associated with hearing impairment. This is why Consumer Reports found "a fragmented and confusing marketplace and difficulty sorting out good hearing-aid providers from less-capable ones..." The hearing aid industry and the audiology communities have been unable to develop an effective standard of practice.