The need to be a motivated and informed patient
The need to purchase the right technology
The need to find a competent and caring hearing provider
The need for a supportive family.
The part I personally found of most interest was FINDING THE RIGHT HEARING AID PROVIDER as Tom addressed issues that I would never have thought of. He recommended that you visit two to three different providers before making a decision on who to choose as your provider. He also said "DO NOT BRING YOUR WALLET OR CHECK BOOK" to this first visit; you are not there to buy anything, you are there to determine if this is the right place for you. He also strongly suggested that you bring along your significant other to these first visits as use of a hearing aid is designed to help you in communicating effectively with other people and the person most affected by your loss of hearing is your spouse and family. In order to determine which of the providers might work the best for you he suggested that you ask yourself these questions:
- Were you given a hearing screening or full exam?
- Were you given a full explanation of all the tests that were done?
- Were you told what type of hearing loss you have and why you sometimes can "hear" but not "understand"?
- Were you told what a hearing aid can and cannot do for you?
- Were you asked about the effect of your hearing loss on your daily life at home, at work, in school etc?
- Was your "significant other" given an opportunity to express the effect of your loss of hearing on them and your other loved ones?