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ASK THE EXPERT

Q.  I have served as an usher at the Long Center and other Austin venues off and on for almost 15 years.  The dialogue during the events has become harder and harder to understand in recent years.  Do I need hearing aids to hear more clearly?   A.  If you wore good, properly programmed hearing aids, the dialogue during the

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Q.  My Grandma knows when I’m trying to talk with her, but she asks me to repeat things a lot.  Would she hear me better if she had some hearing aids?   A.  If your Grandma has some hearing loss, she would likely hear you more easily and more clearly if she had some good hearing aids.  Encourage her to

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Q.  When I bought hearing aids 5 years ago, my hearing center said I did not need to make any adjustments because the aids adjusted automatically in different environments.  Last month I bought new hearing aids somewhere else.  They gave me three different listening programs and volume control to make some adjustments myself.  What’s the difference between automatic and manual

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Q.  My hearing began to go in my late 40’s.  I’ll be 60 next year and am keenly aware of how my behavior and communication with people has changed over the years.  Still, wearing hearing aids worries me.  What steps can I take before I have to get hearing aids?   A.  It sounds as if you are already aware

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Q.  My Mom cared for my Dad the past 10 years.  Her hearing declined throughout that time.  Now she is uncertain about making a hearing test appointment.  What are the hazards if she chooses not to address her hearing loss?   A.  After caring for your Dad for 10 years, your Mom might think of a hearing test as the

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Q.  I am 76 and stay fairly active.  My hearing has been less than ideal for a number of years.  How well would hearing aids handle bridge games, a bowling league, shows at the Long Center, Zach Scott Theater, swimming at Barton Springs and working in the yard?   A.  Newer hearings aids are very durable, highly resistant to moisture,

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Q.  Why can’t I hear the TV better, even when it is turned up almost all the way?  This is driving me and my family crazy.  A.  With most types of hearing loss the level of volume can seem okay, but words sound unclear.  Most hearing loss makes it harder to detect high pitched and softer parts of speech, like

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Q.  When my sweet, 3-year old Yorkie chewed up my cute 1-year old hearing aid last month, I had to buy a new one.  Do you know of a company that provides insurance for hearing aids, either for damage or for loss?   A.  The more prominent hearing aid manufacturers automatically provide insurance and repair warranties on their hearing aids. 

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Q.  I only have trouble hearing in loud, noisy places like restaurants and sporting events.  Are there any hearing aids that can help me in these situations?   A.  Yes, the newest hearing aids work wonders in noisy environments – if you have distinct hearing loss.  However, if noisy places are truly the only locations that cause you difficulty, you’re

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Q.  My 10-year old hearing aids work just fine.  Is there any reason to consider new ones?   A.  Let’s say your 10-year old hearing aids were the top of the line when you bought them.  There is no doubt that today’s most advanced hearing aids process sound more quickly, more thoroughly, and more clearly than your older hearing aids. 

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