Why I'm trying internet source after trying local audiologist

I had my hearing tested at Sam’s Club. I thought the test was pretty thorough. Then I went to a local audiologist - the only one covered by my health insurance. His test was less thorough, although the audiogram results were similar to Sam’s. But he was on the condescending side.

The problem really arose a few hours after he literally CRAMMED the Widex Moment RIC receiver into my ear when I noted a sloshing/popping sound in my left ear. The canal was bleeding and didn’t stop for a few hours. The next day a requested and received a refund. I didn’t want the healing process to consume my 30-day trial period and I really didn’t care for the audiologist.

My point is: Not all audiologists are worth going to. Some are better or worse than others. You either need a good personal recommendation or you need to be lucky.

As for me, my experience convinced me I’d rather do my own fitting and calibration. After doing a few weeks worth of online research, I settled on MD Hearing Core Bluetooth aids. The fit is much better than what the local audiologist did to me, and they seem to be as effective as the Widex were. The test for audiogram the Bluetooth system provided was very similar to both the Sam’s Club and audiologist office tests.

So, for those who are reasonably familiar with audio and smartphones, and don’t mind research and comparing, online options are a very viable option and are likely to save a grand or two as well.

gfmucci,

That sounds traumatic! While reading your experience I literally cringed and got the shivers just imagining the feeling in the ear canal. OUCH!

If I were in your shoes, I would probably have come to the same conclusion. Unfortunately, just because someone is an Audiologist does not mean that they actually know what they are doing with hearing aids.

Not all hearing professionals are created equal. Please don’t give up on us just because you happened to have a terrible one. In fact, today in my office we were talking about the biggest problem that we face is that other hearing professionals have given our industry a big black eye.

If you are doing the DIY hearing aid model, then there are a few things to keep in mind. 1) do not turn it too loud!!! You do not want to cause any damage simply because you didn’t know what you were doing. 2) Wear your hearing aids a minimum of 10 hours per day, every day. Your brain will thank you as it adapts and gets the auditory exercise it needs. 3) Once you’re pretty sure that the hearing aids are programmed appropriately, go spend a few bucks to get your hearing tested again. Do a pre and post comparison. Make sure that you are tested with single syllable words both with your hearing aids and without them. This way you can ensure that you are getting maximum clarity from your hearing aids.

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Taking it a step farther, after you are happy with your work, pay for a live speech mapping to see what is actually happening at the tympanic membrane. The audiologist/ HIS will not be able to program your MD Hearing products but you will be able to see if you are in the ballpark. You may be happy with your programming but maybe you could be a lot happier with a few minor tweaks. As a retired hearing aid specialist, I did not have to deal with the self programming issue but I still cannot imagine an individual actually hitting the nail on the head on their own.

How does “live speech mapping” work? Is that when words with s and t and ch and such are repeated?

I know my “old age” hearing loss is fairly typical: down about 10 db at 2,000Hz and down 55 db around 5,000 to 6,000Hz; about 30% less severe in my right ear.

My tinnitus has the characteristics of the sounds of crickets in a distant meadow. I’m guessing it raises the noise floor by around 20 db in the mid/high frequencies. Not markedly unpleasant, but it does impact my S/N ratio.

Live speech mapping is like real ear measurement except that live speech is used instead of a test signal. Both speech mapping and REM are very effective in seeing what is happening at the TM. Not exactly the end all and cure all for prescription setting but at least you know you are in the right ball park and fine tuning can proceed from there.