The Role of an Audiologist in Managing Hearing Loss

October 3, 2023

Hearing loss is a prevalent health issue affecting people globally. In the United States alone, more than 15% of adults report some form of hearing issues. The person who comes to the rescue in such cases is an audiologist, a healthcare professional specializing in hearing and ear disorders. 

As Audiologists, we thought we would clear the air on the crucial role that we play in diagnosing and treating hearing loss.

What is Audiology?

Audiology is a branch of medicine that deals with hearing and hearing-related disorders. The professionals who practice in this field are audiologists, like us! We diagnose, manage, and treat hearing problems, including hearing loss and tinnitus, an auditory condition characterized by ringing or noise in the ears without an external sound source.

Audiologists can work in various settings, including private practices, hospitals, schools, and rehabilitation centers. At Anywhere Audiology, we deliver our services right at the patient's doorsteps, making us a mobile audiology service provider in New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania.

Audiologists are doctoral-level healthcare professionals who are certified and licensed in audiology. We undergo extensive training that includes an AuD, PhD, or a combination AuD/PhD degree. We are also required to undertake clinical placements, state licensing exams, and national exams.

Audiologists are also committed to lifelong learning, keeping abreast with cutting-edge research, innovative technologies, and best practices in audiology. This commitment ensures we provide the highest quality of care to our patients.

What We Do 

The responsibilities of an audiologist are diverse and centered around the diagnosis and management of hearing loss. Here is a detailed look into our primary roles:

Comprehensive Diagnosis

This is the first step in the hearing care journey. Audiologists conduct an array of audiological assessments to determine the type and degree of hearing loss. These tests enable us to develop an effective, personalized treatment strategy.

Hearing Aid Selection and Adjustment

Navigating the complex landscape of hearing aids and assistive listening devices can be daunting. However, audiologists are well-versed in these technologies. We recommend the most suitable hearing aids based on an individual’s specific needs, lifestyle, and budget. We also ensure that these devices provide maximum comfort, optimal sound quality, and effective noise reduction.

Ongoing Maintenance and Care

Properly functioning hearing aids are essential to your hearing success. Audiologists perform regular maintenance checks, cleaning, and adjustments to keep your hearing aids functioning at our best.

Auditory Rehabilitation

Audiologists play a pivotal role in auditory rehabilitation – a set of services designed to improve hearing and communication skills. These may involve auditory training, speech-reading, and development of strategies to improve listening skills, especially in challenging environments.

Emotional Support and Counseling

The journey with hearing loss can bring about emotional challenges. Audiologists provide support, offering counseling to patients and our loved ones. We help individuals understand the nuances of our hearing loss and how to adapt to life with hearing aids or other assistive devices.

The Difference Between an Audiologist and a Hearing Aid Dispenser

When you're looking for a hearing aid, you'll likely encounter two main types of professionals: hearing aid dispensers and audiologists. Now, you might wonder, "Aren't we the same?" Well, not quite.

A hearing aid dispenser usually has a high school diploma and has passed a state licensure exam. Their role is pretty straightforward: they conduct basic hearing tests and fit you with hearing aids. They can get you a device and make basic fittings, but that's about the extent of it.

On the other hand, an audiologist has a doctoral degree and a much broader scope of practice. We’re the hearing healthcare all-stars, if you will. Not only can we fit you with hearing aids, but we can also diagnose and treat a range of hearing and balance disorders. We’re trained to manage tinnitus, often work with cochlear implants, and even provide rehabilitation services. It's a holistic approach that goes beyond just selling you a device.

So why do most people favor audiologists like us when it comes to getting a hearing aid? First off, our level of expertise is hard to beat. We’ve got the educational background to handle complex cases and offer personalized treatment plans. Secondly, we can dig deeper to diagnose any underlying issues that might be contributing to your hearing loss or tinnitus. And let's not forget the ongoing support we provide. From adjustments and maintenance to counseling, we’re here for the long haul.

What to Expect When You See an Audiologist?

When you visit an audiologist, we will start by taking a detailed personal and family history. We will then examine the outer ear to check for external trauma, ear infection, or earwax buildup. After that, we will perform several tests to diagnose your hearing health accurately.

Based on the results of these tests, we will make recommendations for treatment and/or management. This could include suggestions for hearing aids, auditory rehabilitation, or other related treatments.

Come See Us for the Real Thing

At Anywhere Audiology, our team of experienced audiologists is dedicated to improving your hearing health in the comfort of your home. We are a reliable, customer-centric, and trustworthy hearing care provider serving the New York Tri-State area. To learn more about our services or to schedule an appointment, contact us today.

Written by
Reviewed by
Dr. Emma Durazzo
Owner & Doctor of Audiology
Read full bio

With years of experience and continued professional training, Emma Durazzo (formerly Emma McCue) has developed her expertise in a variety of subspecialties within the scope of audiology.