If you need to get your hearing checked, there’s a good chance you’re looking to visit an audiologist. Just like any other medical or healthcare profession, audiology contains a range of people with different mannerisms, approaches, and costs. The following will explore steps you can take to locate audiologists and qualities you can look for once you’ve found one to help you make the choice of who you’re trusting with your hearing and balance.
What Is An Audiologist?
Foremost, given the amount of medical and health professional categories there exist, you should first be sure that an audiologist is a person you’re looking for. An audiologist is a healthcare professional who has the training and experience necessary to diagnose hearing and balance problems. This position requires a doctorate in audiology (Au.D.) or a master’s or doctoral degree from an audiology graduate program from a university that has been accredited.
Audiologists can treat patients at any stage of life (from birth to adulthood) and have the skill set necessary to diagnose hearing or balance problems, as well as the expertise needed to help you better manage and treat hearing problems.
Typically, an audiologist will be visited when someone suspects that they have a hearing problem (or a balance problem). The audiologist will typically begin by reviewing your health history and then evaluate your hearing. They will let you know whether your citation is medically treatable and if any specialist doctors will be needed. Even if your situation isn’t something that requires or allows for medical treatment, care recommendations can still be suggested, like hearing aids, aural rehabilitation, or balance therapy.
Do They Come Well Recommended Or Referred?
If you have a good working relationship with your doctor, naturopath, or another healthcare provider, you can ask them for recommendations and referrals for either a specific audiologist or an audiology clinic. They may have had several other patients who went to an audiologist, and so have gotten an idea of whether people are pleased with the care they received.
You can also ask for referrals from friends, family members, or colleagues. If they have been to an audiologist recently, they can let you know what their experience was with a particular audiologist.
Does Your Insurance Policy Cover Part Or All Of Their Services?
Not everyone has medical insurance, but some people do. If this is you, and you’re hoping to have your visit covered by your insurance provider, it is a good idea to take a look at the policy and figure out which audiologists are included in their network. This will greatly speed up the process of having your insurance provider pay for your visit to the audiologist.
Are They Well-Reviewed?
One of the best qualities an audiologist can have is positive reviews from previous patients. Given the abundance of reviews on the internet, it’s relatively easy to hear a few strangers’ opinions on an audiologist you’re considering. When reading reviews, be sure to maintain a critical eye towards all posts, but especially ones that are one star or five stars. Try to see what else a person who has left a glowing or scathing review has reviewed. Sometimes it becomes clear that a reviewer is simply a miserable person or someone who sees the world through rose-tinted glasses.
Are There Options Available To Meet Your Linguistic Needs?
Not everyone is living somewhere where their first language is spoken. When it comes to medical terminology, functioning in a second language can be especially daunting, as it can be hard to describe sensations and symptoms as well as understand what a medical professional is saying. The words needed are often not part of everyday vocabulary. Ensure that the audiologist speaks your preferred language, or seek out the option of bringing someone you trust to the examination who can act as a translator.
Do They Make You Feel Safe And Comfortable?
You should never put up with someone making you feel unsafe, uncomfortable, disrespected, or unheard in the field of medicine (or really, anywhere else). You are allowed to leave at any time; you are allowed to ask questions; you are allowed to speak your mind; you are allowed to talk about what you feel is happening. Will they talk to you about your own research regarding hearing aids and which ones you think you might like? A good audiologist will listen to your concerns and needs and work with you to find solutions that suit your life and worries.
The above information should help you filter through your audiologist options and find someone who meets your needs and expectations. Remember, it’s always okay to find a second opinion if you’re unhappy with the information you’ve been given.