A hearing aid is a small electronic device that is worn in or behind your ear and amplifies sounds so they can better be heard. Digital hearing aids convert the sound waves into numerical codes and amplify them. They can be programmed to amplify some frequencies more than others and to focus on sounds coming from a certain direction.
We work together with the Hearing Institute of the Desert for the dispensation of hearing devices. They will recommend the best device for each particular patient’s needs and budget.
A bone anchored hearing aids (BAHA) is an implantable device used to improve hearing by stimulating the inner ear through the bone. BAHAs can improve hearing in patients with less severe cases of conductive or mixed hearing impairment. It is ideal for patients who are not candidates for regular hearing aids because of a physical deformity, frequent ear infections or narrow ear canals.
Aural rehabilitation for those with cochlear implants or BAHAs generally includes learning strategies to communicate more effectively in conversation as well as how to handle distracting background noise.
Ear Wax and Foreign Body Removal
Ear wax is a natural substance produced to protect the ear from damage and infections and cleaning generally isn’t needed. However, if an extreme amount of wax builds up, it may need to be cleaned, or lavaged, by your doctor. Ear drops may also be prescribed to soften the wax and allow it to be cleared out.
When a foreign body has lodged in the ear canal, it’s essential to see a medical professional. Your doctor will most likely remove it using either tweezers or by flushing the canal with saline.
Tympanostomy Tube Placement and Eardrum Perforation Repair
Ear tube surgery, known as a tympanostomy, involves a tiny incision in the eardrum. Any fluid in the ear is removed, and the tube is inserted. The surgery is performed as an outpatient procedure and only takes 10-15 minutes. Most patients can resume normal activities the next day.
The tympanic membrane, or ear drum, can be easily damaged by injury or infection. Tympanoplasty is reconstructive surgery for perforated tympanic membranes that can help restore hearing. The surgery can be performed through the ear canal or behind the ear. Tympanic membrane grafting may be required, in which skin tissue around the ear is used to reconstruct the eardrum.
Custom Swim-Mold Creation
Custom swim molds are silicone ear plugs created from an impression of an individual’s ear. They provide a water-tight seal to keep ear canals dry, which is important for people who have undergone ear surgery or have certain chronic conditions. Used for swimming and bathing, swim molds repel the moisture that can exacerbate symptoms or delay healing.
Assistive Listening Devices
Assistive listening devices are technological instruments that can improve your listening comfort level in everyday situations. Some examples of assistive listening devices are television listening devices, corded or cordless amplified telephones, personal amplifiers and Captel captioned telephones that can display the words of a call as they are spoken.
A bone anchored hearing aid placement procedure takes less than an hour to perform on an outpatient basis, using local anesthesia for adults and general anesthesia for children. Patients can return home the same day. During the initial procedure, only the titanium screw and abutment are placed, while the hearing aid is implanted during a second procedure three to six months later. This ensures that the titanium becomes integrated into the bone for long-lasting correction.
Tinnitus Management with the Zen Program
The Zen Program is an option offered in certain hearing aids for tinnitus management. Tinnitus sufferers experience a ringing or other noise in their ears that can be very stressful, especially if it is loud or constant. The Zen feature plays harmonic tones through your hearing aid, making tinnitus less noticeable to many patients and promoting relaxation.