Audiology and Hearing Aid Services
We keep a supply of batteries for you to purchase in our office. Stop in routinely for fresh batteries. Make sure to check the batteries in your hearing devices often and make sure there is no dirt, wax or corrosion interfering with the battery performance. Batteries that carry sufficient charge will cause the hearing aid to make a noise (squeak or squeal) when cupped in your hand, or as you are inserting the device into your ear. Often a squeal can be detected if you cup your hand over the aid once its inserted in the ear. Most new hearing aids also create a low battery signal (sequence of beeps) when the battery charge is low and requires a change. It is important to remember that when you remove a freshness tab from a new battery, you must allow the battery to "breathe" (or air to saturate into the battery) for at least one full minute prior to inserting the battery into the hearing aid. This will produce a full charge and the longest battery life.
Different manufacturers may tag their batteries with a different letter designation (ie. 312A or 312DAZ), but the number is the actual size of your battery. Battery Color designations are universal to all manufacturers.
- Size 10 (yellow)
- Size 312 (brown)
- Size 13 (orange)
- Size 675 (blue)
Cell Phone Accessories
Custom earmolds for cell phone headrests, Bluetooth compatible device, hands-free and more.
Cerumen, or ear wax, can be removed from the ear canal so that it does not interfere with listening or comfort, especially for individuals who wear hearing aids.
Diagnostic Audiologic Evaluations
Scheduled with and performed by our licensed, certified Doctors of Audiology, diagnostic testing is subject to professional fees. Insurance often covers these services, though appropriate referrals may be required.
Diagnostic Hearing Evaluations
During your hearing examination, you will be tested using a series of low to high pitched tones. We will also ask you to repeat several words to determine how well you understand speech. The results of both tone and speech testing are interpreted, and we will explain the degree, shape, type and severity of your hearing loss, and how this impacts your ability to communicate and interact with others. The diagnostic hearing evaluation also helps your Audiologist to determine how beneficial the use of hearing aids might be, and what kinds of improvements you can expect with amplification.
Ear Impressions & Ear Molds
Making a mold of your ear, or an ear impression, may be necessary for the fitting of hearing aids, swimming molds, hearing protective devices, custom music earpieces or earpieces for your cell phone. Your Audiologist will guide you through the style and selection process unique to each of these devices. If a custom earpiece is required, an ear impression will be made using silicone material syringed carefully into the ear canal to capture the unique shape and contour of your ear canal. This ensures that your custom earpiece fits perfectly and ehances the performance of your hearing aid or audio device.
Evaluation and Fitting for Musician's Ear Plugs
Musicians practice and perform in a variety of different settings. They are exposed to high levels of sound, sometimes for long periods, which may put them at risk for permanent hearing damage. Musician’s ear plugs are custom-made devices that help to limit the sound exposure from instruments, while still providing a rich musical experience for the performer or audience.
Hearing Aid Selecting, Fitting and Counseling
When the hearing examination reveals significant hearing loss, your Audiologist will recommend hearing aids. During the hearing aid selection process, you will consult with your Audiologist to determine the style and technology that will fit your lifestyle and budget. At the hearing aid fitting, you will receive the hearing aids you selected. They are programmed based on a prescription that is specific your hearing loss. The Audiologist will make adjustments to the hearing aids to make sure the settings and fit are ideal for you. The Audiologist will counsel and instruct on the use and care of the instruments, and schedule you for follow-up visits to ensure your experience is successful.
Hearing Aid Repairs
Some minor hearing aid repairs can be done at Platte Valley Hearing Center in a short period of time; others will need to be sent to the manufacturer for repair. Your Audiologist can help determine what kind of repair is necessary if you feel your aid is not working properly.
Industrial hearing screenings
Workers in certain occupations are required to receive regular hearing tests due to the risk of hearing loss that can be caused by excessive noise in their workplace. These hearing screenings can be completed in less than 30 minutes, and comply with the standards set by OSHA.
In Office Services
We encourage ongoing cleaning and maintenance after your hearing aid purchase to ensure you receive optimum performance and benefit from your hearing aid(s). We encourage all our patients to come in for regular hearing aid check-ups and cleaning.
Repairs, Maintenance, Cleanings, and Warranties come with all brands of hearing aids. We offer in-office repairs when possible on most makes/models.
Live Speech Mapping
Live Speech Mapping is a fitting process that uses probe microphones and live real-time speech to allow the patient and their family members to immediately see and understand the benefits of hearing aids and fitting adjustments.
Otoacoustic emissions are a valuable new clinic toold that allows our Audiologists to understand how the hearing receptor cells (called outer hair cells) in the cochlea are working. OAEs provide essential information in the diagnosis and treatment of hearing loss in infants, especially if a rare condition called Auditory Neuropathy is present. OAEs also provide useful information when testing for tinnitus, and to help better understand the nature and degree of hearing loss in children.
Tinnitus Evaluation and Management
Tinnitus is described as a ringing in the ear, and can range in severity. A tinnitus evaluation can help you identify how much tinnitus interferes with your daily life and if there are treatment options that can benefit you.
Tympanometry is a method used to test the condition of the middle ear and mobility of the eardrum (tympanic membrane) and the conduction bones, by creating variations of air pressure in the ear canal. It is useful in the diagnosis of ear infection, and certain middle ear conditions such as otosclerosis or middle ear bone problems.
VNG - Balance Evaluations
The vestibular portion of the inner ear often requires evaluation when patients are experiencing symptoms of vertigo, unsteadiness, dizziness, and other balance disorders. Hearing evaluation tests are frequently combined with vestibular studies for the identification of inner ear disorders. At Platte Valley Hearing Center, we are equipped to perform evaluations such as Auditory Brainstem Response testing, which evaluates the auditory nerve function and can help rule out tumors. We also routinely perform Electrocochleography for patients suspected of having Meniere's disease. Electrocochleography takes about an hour, and involves placing a sticky electrode near the eardrum to measure the electrical potentials generated in the inner ear. Our Audiologists are also trained to perform and instruct regarding Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo, or BPPV. BPPV is one of the most common, and most treatable, forms of episodic dizziness. We have excellent success rates using proven BPPV exercises, some of which are performed in the office while others are done by the patient at home.
Additional Hearing Services
- Comprehensive hearing evaluations and screenings for children and adults
- Tinnitus evaluations and treatment options
- Diagnostic assessments including Auditory Brainstem Response, Otoacoustic Emissions, and Electrocochleography
- Coordinated care with your family physician or Ear-Nose-Throat Specialist
- Industrial hearing screenings
- Evaluation and selection of hearing instruments to meet your needs
- Custom hearing aid fittings, including conventional and advanced digital instruments
- Full range of Bluetooth and Wireless 2.4 GHz hearing aid accessories for phones, cell phones, TV and more
- Advice and counseling on the use and care of hearing aids
- Live speech mapping to ensure maximum hearing aid benefit
- Minor hearing aid repairs on-site, usually within 48 hours
- Custom hearing products, including musicians' earplugs, swim molds and hearing protection
- Assistive Listening Devices, including FM technology, alarm clocks, doorbells, television and phone amplifiers