2019 Hear For The Holidays!

 

Do you know someone who’s life would be improved by improved hearing? WE WANT TO KNOW!

The Hearing & Dizziness Clinic and Amherstburg Audiology & Hearing Aids are in search of members of our communities (Essex, Amherstburg and LaSalle) who’s hearing impairment is holding them back – so we can gift them US! One lucky winner from each clinic will receive a set of hearing aids and the gift of our services for 3 years.

Simply click the gift below and fill out our short online form.

All applicants must make themselves available for an audiometric evaluation. Entries will be received until November 29, 2019 at 11:59pm, so that we can have some time to have our winners hearing by the holiday! If you have questions, please feel free to contact us any time!

CLICK HERE TO ENTER!

What is an Audiologist

I have the pleasure to work with new patients everyday. When going over my patients case histories, I ask them the following two questions: “Have you ever had your hearing tested? If yes, by whom?”

I am amazed by the amount of people who tell me that they were tested by an audiologist, but in reality they were tested by the office secretary, the physicians wife, or even the janitor. You may think I’m joking, but unfortunately I’m not. The next time you see your audiologist, ask them about this and I guarantee you that they will tell you something along the same lines.

I’m not going to bash any other profession, but I do think that patients need to know who they are seeing. Obviously, I am biased: if you ask me EVERYONE should see an audiologist.

When getting a hearing test, you may encounter one of the following three different professionals:

Ear, Nose and Throat Doctor:

Also known as E.N.T. or an Otolaryngologist, this is a surgeon. E.N.T.s are medical doctors. Surgeons do surgery, and prescribe medications.  Often, family doctors will refer patient’s who complain of hearing loss to these surgeons. Personally, I believe that this is often a waste of a medical referral. Especially during the cold months when children with chronic ear infections have to wait months before getting an appointment. Just my two cents.

Audiologists:

What can I say, Audiologists are awesome. I just wish the general population knew who we were. When I tell people what I do, people think I work with stereo equipment. If you are one of those people, don’t be ashamed. I went to visit a local family doctor and he had NO CLUE what I did. I wish I was joking, but I am not.

Now you really want to know what an Audiologists do. Audiologist have a Masters or Doctorate level degree in Audiology. After completing undergrad, we complete three to five years of advanced education. Simply put, we diagnose and treat hearing and balance disorders. DISCLAIMER: Ohh wait… in Ontario we don’t diagnose (I will save that for a later rant). When you see an Audiologist we will measure you hearing, similar to how an Optometrist (Eye Doctor) measures your visual acuity. An Audiologist will prescribe hearing aids, similar to how an Optometrist will prescribe glasses.  We also see patients with balance disorders, tinnitus (ringing/sounds in the ear), and central auditory processing disorders.

Hearing Aid Dispenser:

If you had a “free hearing test”, you most likely saw a hearing aid dispenser. I hate to use the eye example again but think of them in the same light as an optician. Opticians can dispense (or teach you) how to use your glasses (and possibly contact lenses, I’m not sure about that), hearing aid dispensers are supposed to dispense hearing aids BUT there is a loophole in our Ontario Healthcare system that allows them to “suggest” hearing aids (this will be a topic of a later rant).  Dispensers are non-regulated health care providers who have a college level diploma.

As I said before, I am biased towards Audiologists. I hope I haven’t confused you. If you, or a loved one, have a hearing loss it would be in your best interest to be evaluated by an Audiologist.  Book an appointment to see an Audiologist today!

I Think I’ll Wait Until My Hearing Gets Really Bad

“I Think I’ll Wait Until My Hearing Gets Really Bad”
Laurie Bornstein, MS, CCC/A
Executive Hearing LLC

What is your reason to postpone an investment in better hearing? While cost may certainly be a concern, it has also been shown that even when hearing aids are free, many still balk at wearing them. What’s worse is when physicians tell their patients that they are “too young” to wear hearing aids, or “not bad enough yet,” or that “hearing aids only make things louder.”

Physicians who are not Ear, Nose and Throat specialists get very little education about hearing in medical school. Even ENTs who are quite knowledgeable about ears are seldom educated about hearing aids, but because they are medical doctors, patients listen to them and accept as fact statements that might only be opinions. Hearing aid technology changes so frequently that audiologists can barely keep up, but that’s precisely what makes audiology a specialty that requires several years of schooling and constant updating!

When your physician (or anyone!) tells you to skip getting hearing aids for now, ask if s/he knows of a medical or surgical intervention that will make you hear better or make your tinnitus subside. If the answer is no, then get out of there and head to an audiologist for another opinion.

If you have trouble hearing – even “sometimes” – please don’t postpone taking care of it. Today’s hearing solutions range from simple amplifiers that are useful for those who truly might not benefit much from “real” hearing aids, yet report some difficulties, to high-tech devices that will even interact with some electronic devices in the home.
Many people don’t realize how much they miss and how much added stress and fatigue results from straining to hear. Life is not only safer and experiences richer when one can hear, people report having energy that they thought was only available to the young.

Now that there has been shown to be a relationship between untreated hearing loss and early onset of dementia, it is more important than ever to retain your hearing as long as possible. If that means wearing hearing aids, wear them proudly in the realization that you are taking care of yourself so that you can interact fully for as long as you walk this earth. Friends and loved ones are counting on you!

You are a Doctor but I can’t call you Doctor?

Our audiologist is a Doctor of Audiology. She was part of the first graduating class of Doctors of Audiology at Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan. Prior to her official graduation the was practicing in Livonia and was referred to as “Dr. McKenzie”, then after she graduated she returned to Ontario where she could no longer use her title.

In the United States, audiologists who hold a doctorate degree are able to address themselves as Doctor to their patients. In Mexico, audiologists who hold a doctorate degree are able to address themselves as Doctor to their patients.In the U.K., audiologists who hold a doctorate degree are able to address themselves as Doctor to their patients. In other provinces of Canada, audiologists who hold a doctorate degree are able to address themselves as Doctor to their patients. Unfortunately, audiologists who hold a doctorate degree in audiology are unable to address themselves as doctor in in Ontario.

There is a list of several health care professions that are allowed to use the title doctor while treating patients in Ontario. This list includes physicians, chiropractors, optometrists, dentists and psychologists. Patient’s who go to a dentist, are not confused when they see “Dr. Smith”. Patient’s who go to an optometrist, are not confused when they see “Dr. Brown”. Patient’s who bring their dog to a vet are not confused when they see “Dr. White”. Yet, for some reason it is believed that patients who make an appointment to see an audiologist will be confused when they see “Dr. Green”.

Our audiologist is Dr.McKenzie when she goes to the bank. She is Dr. McKenzie when she renews her drivers license or passport. She is Dr. McKenzie in every situation but one: when she treats her patients. She has to actually correct her patients when they refer to her as Dr. McKenzie.

In June 2016, audiologist Dr. Brenda Berge launched a constitutional challenge to use the title doctorwhen treating patients. It’ll be interesting to see what will happen next. We will update this post once a decision has been made.