Hearing Aids vs. Ear Drops

Q.  For the past 3-4 years I have wondered if hearing aids would help me hear people more easily and more clearly.  The Austin American Statesman had a large ad a couple of weeks ago about ear drops that would restore hearing.  Should I try the drops before trying hearing aids?

A.  I also saw that ad in the paper and felt very conflicted about it.  If you have an ear infection or some other malady, contact your doctor.  If your ears are blocked with wax or if your eustachian tubes are stopped up, a prescriptive drop might help reduce the blockage and help improve your hearing to a degree. 

  My guess is that very, very, very few people who using the advertised drops will notice any improvement in their hearing.  It is more likely the drops will temporarily reduce the function of your ear drum and reduce your hearing in the short term.

  Before you use a drop like this, have your ears checked to determine if they need to have a wax buildup removed.  During that ear-check, get your hearing tested also to find out if your hearing issues are caused by nerve loss or not.  Then you can listen to hearing aids during your appointment and find out if they provide the ease of listening and overall clarity you have missed these past few years.  After that appointment, you can consider using drops.  Then compare how the drops affected your hearing with the impact the hearing aids made.

  Call us at the Better Hearing Center of Austin.  We are making appointments for new patients on a selective basis.  Get your ears checked and your hearing tested.  Then listen to some hearing aids.  We provide coaching and adjustments during a 4-week hearing aid trial for patients to fully test hearing aids before making a final purchase. 

Saleem Assaf (BA – Rice, MBA – UT) is a native Dallas, Texan and a recipient of the Texas Hearing Aid Association’s 2018 Dispenser of the Year award.  Outside his practice, Saleem volunteers for hearing healthcare in Austin and abroad.  Since 2008, he has provided $165,000 in hearing aids to students at the Texas School for the Deaf.