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Guest Column: Is Hearing a Problem?

Updated: Oct 6, 2022

Dr. Randi Davis answers common questions about hearing.

What is tinnitus?

Tinnitus is the perception of a sound that has no external source. Some of the more common sounds reported are buzzing, hissing, humming and cricket-like chirps. The sounds can be constant or intermittent. They can occur in one ear or both ears or even in the middle of one’s head. The sound can be accompanied with dizziness or hearing loss. Tinnitus varies in intensity and afflicts millions of Americans. No supplement is currently FDA-approved to help with tinnitus.

How do I find the best cell phone to use with my hearing aids?

Cell phones are rated as to how much interference they are likely to cause hearing aids. The rating scale for both “M” (microphone) and “T” (telecoil) ranges from 1 (poor) to 4 (excellent). The higher the rating, the less likely you will be to experience interference.

Does diabetes increase my risk of hearing loss?

Recent studies have shown that diabetics are two to three times more likely to experience hearing loss. If you are diabetic, please schedule a hearing exam as a baseline to track your hearing in the future.

Will hearing aids make my hearing worse?

This is a very common question and the answer is no. When hearing aids are fit to the correct prescription, they do not harm your ears. The technology in hearing aids ensures that loud sounds are never amplified enough to damage hearing. Some people believe that hearing worsens when they take their aids out. This is a misconception. In reality, hearing aids actually provide auditory stimulation which is good for ears. This stimulation prevents auditory deprivation which can lead to irreversible distortion in the ears. Wearing a hearing aid is like exercise for the brain and ears!

Dr. Randi Davis, the owner of Ascent Audiology and Hearing in Madison, Tennessee, is a Tennessee-licensed audiologist certified by the American Board of Audiology (ABA), the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), and the Academy of Doctors of Audiology (ADA). She is also a Fellow in the American Academy of Audiology (FAAA).~


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