How does a hearing aid fitting work?
If a choice has been made which hearing aid best suits your needs and hearing loss, the next step is the final adjustment or setting the hearing aids to your hearing loss and wishes. What can you expect during an appointment?
A good hearing measurement is the basis for every hearing aid fitting. We call this hearing measurement audiometry. With such a hearing test, your hearing is measured with headphones. (Beep test) It is then checked which pitches you can still hear and the extent to which you can still hear them. In addition, we can do a test in which we can determine which loudnesses are not pleasant for you. This is the level we call the “uncomfortable level”. Then we measure by means of a kind of diadem, which we place behind the ear on the skull, the “bone conduction”. This way we can determine where the hearing problem lies. Either in the conduction part, these are the eardrum and the ossicles, or in the inner ear the cochlea (the cochlea), we call this the perception loss. Finally, we do a speech test. With such a speech test (word test) we can determine the percentage that you can still hear at a normal loudness and at which loudness you can hear the maximum percentage. In this way we can estimate to some extent what is feasible with a good setting of the hearing aids.
The chosen hearing aids must then be tailor-made. That is to say, the correct size of the tubes or the speakers and the correct way to bring the sound into the ear. Bringing the sound into the ear is done with a custom-made earmold, which is then previously made in a laboratory, or a universal solution in the form of a kind of umbrella. We call this a “dome”. The way we choose depends on the degree of hearing loss. With a greater hearing loss, it is better to close the ear canal a little more.
Then we will make contact with the PC on which the special software is located with which we can adjust the hearing aid. The measurement is used to calculate how the hearing aid should be set. We call this a “First Fit”. This calculation is unique for each manufacturer. Also a “Feedback test” is usually done. This is a test with the hearing aids in the ear where we see what sound escapes from the ear. This way, unnecessary beeping can be prevented and we have a good return on the sound that we send into the ear with the devices. The hearing aid is also designed according to the wishes and requirements of the user. For example, we can add extra programs and make certain functionalities available.
To make an adjustment successful, we also carry out a special measurement in which we can give you the very best setting in an objective way, using a kind of neck loop where we can measure what is happening near the eardrum with small tubes in your ear. . We see the result of this measurement on our screen and so we can fine-tune the hearing aid via the software. In addition, we can do a speech test to see whether speech understanding has indeed improved and whether we achieve the score that we measured in the very first hearing test.
Everything is set now, what now?
If the hearing aids are optimally set up, you will certainly need some explanation about the use and operation of the hearing aid and how to use the device. We do this as extensively as possible. adjustment is desired, an additional appointment will have to be made with your hearing care professional. Have fun with your new hearing aids!