FAQs: Amplifon answers to your questions

The answers to the questions you might have

About hearing loss

How common is hearing loss?

Hearing impairment affects many people at different stages of their lives. 55% of people over 60 years of age have some degree of hearing loss, rising to over 70% of people by the time they reach 70 and 93% of people 81 years and older. This shows that if your hearing is deteriorating it isn't unusual at all. Hearing loss can affect your quality of life and it's never too late to do something about it, so if you have any concerns book an appointment for a free hearing test and talk to one of our qualified hearing aid audiologists who will be happy to help.

What causes hearing loss?

Most hearing loss is caused by the ageing process, however regular exposure to loud noises, heredity, and some illnesses can also cause hearing loss. Around 90% of all cases of hearing loss are because the microscopic hair cells in the cochlea (or inner ear) become damaged which limits their ability to detect soft, higher frequency sounds and means that they cannot send a complete signal to the brain. As a result, it becomes difficult to understand the consonants that allow us to understand speech. Also see How our hearing works and Types and causes of hearing loss

What are the hearing loss symptoms?

The first sign of hearing loss is a difficulty in hearing certain sounds or tones clearly. For example, you may be unable to distinguish similar sounding words or hear higher pitched voices, such as those of children. Other signs include difficulty with cross-conversations, hearing at a distance such as in meetings, listening to the TV or radio, or hearing in large buildings where there may be echoes such as in churches or auditoriums. Also see Take our online hearing questionnaire and Symptoms of hearing loss.

Why I have hearing problems with background noise?

There may be many reasons for difficulty in discriminating speech from background noise and this is usually an indication of sensorineural hearing loss. A hearing assessment will reveal the cause of this problem and properly prescribed and fitted hearing aids will normally provide significant improvement.
Also see Types and causes of hearing loss.

Why does hearing change with age?

It is generally accepted that a loss of hearing in old age is quite common. our hearing worsens with age. Not only have older people's auditory system been exposed to noise for many years but also, as we age, all our facilities deteriorate, including our hearing. A free hearing test will quickly establish if you do have a hearing loss  an age related hearing loss and our hearing aid audiologist will then be able to recommend suitable aids to improve your hearing. Regular hearing tests and Aftercare will ensure that any deterioration in your hearing is picked up quickly so that your hearing aids always provide you with the best possible hearing improvement.
Also see Take our online hearing questionnaire.

What is 'hearing loss'? What is 'deafness'?

'Deafness' usually implies a severe or profound hearing loss that only affects a minority of the hearing impaired population. 

'Hearing loss' is the general term to describe a lower ability to hear sounds than the average person. Unlike deafness Hearing loss can be treated by amplification or hearing aids.

Can hearing loss be reversed?

Broadly speaking, hearing loss can be divided into 3 categories: sensorineural, which affects the inner ear and possibly the auditory nerve; conductive, which affects the outer or middle ear and how sound is transmitted to the sensory (inner) part of the ear; and mixed hearing loss, which is a combination of the two types of loss.

Sensorineural hearing loss is the most common type of hearing loss seen in adults, typically due to age or significant ongoing noise exposure. It cannot be reversed, although in very rare cases it may fluctuate to some degree. Hearing aids are the only intervention to improve sensorineural hearing loss.
Conductive hearing loss is a lot less common in adults and may cause temporary or fluctuating hearing loss which may totally or partially resolve. A hearing test will reveal the degree and nature of the hearing loss, and in some cases will prompt a referral to your GP or even onwards referral to an ENT specialist for further investigation.

About your hearing aids

Are hearing aids a treatment for ringing in ears?

This problem is called tinnitus and hearing aids can often help as people with a hearing loss often suffer from this condition. Your first step should be to seek the advice of your GP, however if you also have a hearing loss, then your hearing aid audiologist can prescribe suitable hearing aids that can help you manage your tinnitus more effectively. 

Can I wear hearing aids after an ear infection?

Providing that your hearing loss is mostly confined to the middle ear, you should have a good chance of hearing well with 'bone conduction' hearing aids. These work by transmitting amplified sound through the mastoid bone to the inner ear, so by-passing the affected middle ear. These types of hearing aids are most commonly designed as part of a pair of spectacles.
Also see Types of hearing aids.

How do hearing aids work?

Hearing aids detect and amplify sounds across a range of frequencies that are important in human hearing- mainly for hearing speech, but also for environmental sounds such as birds singing or the phone ringing. Simply put, sound is picked up by a microphone, amplified digitally and then sound is produced via a speaker. Hearing aids amplify different levels and pitches of sounds differently, depending on the degree and configuration of hearing loss. Modern hearing aids are all digital, and are becoming increasingly sophisticated at picking out speech from background noise, and delivering better sound quality. 

How much are hearing aids?

We offer a wide range of hearing aids from the world's leading manufacturers at prices to suit everyone's budget. The cost of a hearing aid depends mainly on the type of hearing loss you have and the variety of different situations that your hearing aid will need to cope with. The more varied the situations and lifestyles, the more sophisticated the hearing aid's technology needs to be. At your hearing test we will advise you on the various options available to you and the most appropriate level of technology required for your individual hearing loss and lifestyle.
Discover Hearing aids types.

About your hearing test

Why should I take a free hearing test?

Everyone's hearing starts to deteriorate from an early age but especially from 50 onwards. So if you are having any hearing difficulties at all, it is worth having a free hearing test with one of our qualified hearing aid audiologists. During the test we can establish whether your hearing problems are due to medical reasons or simply 'wear and tear' (age or having worked in noisy environments are the usual causes of wear and tear). If you have not already seen a specialist and your hearing problems are due to medical reasons, we will refer you to an appropriate medical specialist, usually your doctor, for further investigation. If they are due to wear and tear we will discuss the results of the hearing test with you and discuss the options available.

What happens during and after a free hearing test?

The initial consultation and test is quick and easy and your results are available immediately. This consultation is intended to be an informative, helpful and stress-free meeting with your hearing aid audiologist. He or she will ask you about the history of your hearing loss, explore when and where you have most difficulty with your hearing and the type of situations that your hearing aids will need to cope with. The hearing aid audiologist will examine your ears and carry out full audiometric tests. Based on the information you provide and the test results, he will be able to recommend whether hearing aids will help you and the most appropriate ones to improve your hearing. During the test you will be in an acoustically controlled consultation room with the hearing aid audiologist who will check the health of your outer ear and, if they are healthy, he will continue to conduct a comprehensive hearing test. He, or she, will place a pair of head phones on your ears, ensuring you are comfortable, and will play a series of tones to you at different pitches through the headphones. The hearing aid audiologist will ask you to respond to the sounds you hear by pressing a button and he will plot these on a chart called an audiogram. This will tell us if there has been any damage to your hearing and, if so, which part of the ear is damaged and to what extent. The hearing aid audiologist will then discuss with you the best options available. You will also have the opportunity to experience how hearing aids look, feel and sound. This part of the consultation will give you a real understanding of just how much sound you have been missing and the potential benefits to wearing hearing aids. 
Also see What happens during your free hearing test?

How long does a hearing test take?

Due to the thoroughness of the test and the complexity of your hearing system, the full consultation usually takes up to one and a half hours.
Do a free hearing test.

Can I take somebody with me for the hearing check?

We recommend somebody attends the hearing test with you because: A loved one may assist us in understanding the situations where you experience hearing difficulties Some people find it more comfortable to have a family member or a friend with a familiar voice with them Hearing a familiar voice can often demonstrate the difference a hearing aid may make to you During your assessment your hearing aid audiologist will give you a great deal of information and discuss with you the best hearing aid for your hearing loss and lifestyle - having someone with you can help you to remember all this detail afterwards.

While it is beneficial for someone to attend with you, please don't worry if there isn't anyone available. You can still come for a hearing test and we will explain the results and discuss the options with you.

Where can I get a hearing test?

Find your closest Amplifon branch through our tool. Click here to find your local branch.

How much does a hearing test cost?

Our comprehensive hearing test is completely free and without obligation.
Discover our free hearing test.

About Amplifon services and care

Do you offer an after sales service?

Amplifon's free Lifetime Aftercare programme looks after your hearing and your hearing aids for life. This unrivalled programme of support includes a regular assessment and evaluation of your hearing, expert help and advice and demonstrations of new hearing aid technology to ensure you continue to get the most out of your hearing. Once your hearing aids have been fitted, your hearing aid audiologist will arrange your programme of free Lifetime Aftercare to make sure you are getting the maximum benefit from your aids and that they continue to work at maximum efficiency. The hearing aid audiologist will also advise you on how to take daily care of your hearing aids to maintain their performance and what to do when batteries need replacing.? During your regular six monthly Aftercare appointments, we offer expert help and advice, new technology demonstrations and a 5 Star Service check which includes: Cleaning or replacing tubing  (excluding electronic Receiver in the Canals/Ears) and adjusting your hearing aid contacts Cleaning the hearing aid casing and microphone duct Checking for acoustic feedback Checking your hearing aid performance A free pack of hearing aid batteries We will also assess your hearing on a regular basis to monitor changes in your hearing aid to ensure your hearing aids continue to give you the best possible hearing improvement.
Also see Free Lifetime Aftercare.
Also see Aftersales.

Why should I choose Amplifon for hearing health?

Amplifon offers a wide choice of hearing aids in many styles with the latest technology to suit your every requirement. This includes customised In the ear hearing aids where nothing is worn behind the ear. These types of hearing aids are not typically available within the NHS and, where appropriate, are often preferred by hearing aid users for their more discreet appearance. We also offer an unrivalled Aftercare programme that includes a regular assessment and evaluation of your hearing, expert help and advice, new technology demonstrations and a 5-Star Service Checks. So you know you are in very safe hands. We recommend that you come back every six months for your Aftercare appointments so we can adjust your hearing aids to ensure they continue to provide you with the most effective and comfortable hearing experience?. You can also arrange an appointment to see a qualified hearing aid audiologist at your local branch? Between your Aftercare appointments and at a time to suit you should you have any concerns.

Read more 

How much do Amplifon services and products cost?

Because we want you to be completely satisfied we guarantee you won't buy cheaper anywhere else.? We offer a wide range of hearing aids using the latest technology to suit your hearing requirements, your lifestyle? and your budget and our hearing aid audiologists will be happy to discuss and advise on the right hearing aid for you.? 
Also see our Price page.
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