Hearing aids for sensorneural hearing loss


Hearing loss can have a big impact on the quality of your life. This is because your hearing is essential for communicating, participating, socialising, relaxing and interacting with others.

If after your hearing assessment, your audiologist at Melbourne Audiology Centre, recommends treating your hearing loss with hearing aids, we recommend that you don’t delay because:

  • Hearing difficulties may lead to feelings of anxiety, isolation, embarrassment and even depression
  • Auditory deprivation occurs with untreated hearing loss and results in loss of understanding of speech.
  • Recent studies have shown the sooner you start wearing hearing aids the better the results and your quality of life
  • The sooner you start wearing your hearing aids the sooner you will be able to hear all your favourite sounds

Our audiologists are experts in all aspects of hearing, they keep abreast of the latest in hearing aid technology to offer you the best hearing loss treatment solution. They are also experts in helping you to achieve the best hearing that is possible for you by supporting you as you on your journey to better hearing.

One or two hearing aids?

We are often asked if wearing one hearing aid only will do. If you have a hearing loss in both ears, two hearing aids are recommended for multiple well-researched reasons.

Learn more

Hearing Loss Treatment


Your hearing is one of your most precious senses. This is because hearing is essential for communicating, participating, socializing, relaxing and interacting. Hearing helps you to fully enjoy your life.

Hearing loss will disrupt all aspects of your life; professional, family and social life will be impacted. This is because it affects your ability to communicate and participate and it may lead to feeling frustrated, discouraged, embarrassed, isolated and even depressed.

Our blog on ‘Everything you need to know about hearing loss’ has details on signs and symptoms of hearing loss, why you should have your hearing tested and information on available rebates, funding or compensation.

There are five stages that people go through when coping with hearing loss and they are similar to the stages people go through when they grieve a passing of a loved one or any loss that alters their life. Before you can come to terms with hearing loss, you will go through the following five stages: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and finally acceptance. The duration of each stage varies greatly from individual to individual and it may be a process of moving forward and backwards through the stages.

At MAC our audiologists understand the emotional impact of hearing loss and can empathise and help you work through each stage.

Denial
The first stage is denying any hearing difficulty. If you attend a hearing assessment, it is only on the insistence of a family member. You may deny any difficulties, “my hearing is fine, you speak very softly”

Anger
When you can no longer deny it, for example after a diagnosis of hearing loss, feelings of anger, rage, envy and resentment may ensue, and you may lash out blaming others and anything in your frustration.

Bargaining
A period of bargaining follows, this is really an attempt to postpone getting your hearing tested or purchasing hearing aids. You may make excuses.
“my hearing isn’t that bad if only people didn’t mumble”

Depression
Anger and postponement are soon replaced with a sense of loss and sinking into depression, you become tired of saying “pardon”, “what” and begin to withdraw “I won’t go to the club because I can’t hear what is going on”

Acceptance
You will sooner or later come to terms with the hearing loss and seek a solution
“what can I do to hear better”

It is important to address hearing loss earlier rather than later because long term untreated sensorineural (or permanent conductive) hearing loss leads to auditory deprivation; a weakening of the auditory neural system affecting the brain’s ability to understand speech. Auditory deprivation can also occur with poorly fitted hearing aids that do not deliver adequate sound to the brain or with monaurally fitted hearing aids when there is a hearing loss in both ears.

Just like trying to look both ways with one eye, walking with one leg or trying to cut your steak with one hand, hearing with only one ear is also difficult, limiting and physically tiring.

Brains are designed to work with two ears. Information from both ears is used to help you identify the direction of sounds, distinguish speech in noise and deliver a balanced stereo quality to sound.

If you have hearing loss in both ears, two well-fitted hearing aids will allow:
  • A "stereo" or balanced sound between the ears
  • Increased ability to pin-point the direction of sounds
  • Better hearing of sounds from all directions
  • Ease of communication with people who are situated on either side of you
  • Increased comfort because the volume in each hearing aid does not need to be as loud as when only wearing one
  • Reduced risk of auditory deprivation this is where the brain's ability to understand speech diminishes over time because it is not receiving enough sound stimulation.

The benefits of wearing two hearing aids, and in protecting the brain from auditory depravation, are well worth the additional cost. To this end, we always recommend two lower cost aids rather than one higher cost aid when there are budgetary considerations.

Hearing loss, in most cases, occurs gradually over time. As a result, many people wait months or even longer before seeking professional help. You cannot delay doing something about your hearing loss and think that it will not affect you.

This is because, understanding sounds that you hear including speech, involves so much more than just the ear.

Once the ear has detected sound, it is sent via neural pathways to the many areas of the brain that process it. This allows you to understand what the ear has detected, whether it is music, environmental sounds or the spoken words. It is your brain that actually “hears and understands”.

Hearing loss can prevent some of the sounds getting to the brain. As the hearing gets worse, the brain receives less and less sound stimulation and the hearing nerves and areas in the brain responsible for the processing of sound start to weaken. This is known in the field of hearing science as “auditory deprivation”. Even if the hearing levels don’t change, over time the brain continues being deprived of certain sounds and the effects on the brain are ongoing. Ultimately the brain can “forget” how to hear and process sounds properly and the largest effect is seen on the ability to understand speech.

The longer you go without sound, the greater the reduction of speech understanding and the more permanent the effect. Clinical studies are repeatedly showing that the sooner a hearing problem is addressed – usually by the use of hearing aids- the better.

In summary, the effects of auditory deprivation are:
  • Trouble understanding speech
  • Significant difficulty understanding speech in background noise
  • Difficulty identifying where sound is coming from
  • Psychological - anxiety, denial, frustrations, fatigue, shame, social isolation, depression, grief
  • Dementia - people with severe hearing loss are more likely to develop cognitive decline
The best ways to prevent auditory deprivation are:
  • Protect your hearing so you don't get a hearing loss in the first place
  • If you feel you may have a hearing loss have it tested as soon as possible
  • If you do have a hearing loss, early amplification (the use of hearing aids) can prevent auditory deprivation and help get the hearing pathways in the brain working again
  • If you know you have a hearing loss, hearing aids have been recommended but you haven't made a decision to acquire them, don't delay further - give us a call on 1300 761 021
  • If you have hearing loss and have hearing aids but are not wearing them, try to wear them or contact us so we can help you

Batteries used in hearing aids are small “button” size batteries and may be a hazard to young children.

In fact, these small coin size batteries are found everywhere in the home including in TV remote controls, kitchen and bathroom scales, flameless candles and tea lights, reading lights, calculators, and talking books, not only hearing aids.

Due to the relatively high number of batteries used with hearing aids – hearing aid batteries will last between 1 and 4 weeks – it is important that all hearing aid users and carers of people using hearing aids are vigilant at keeping batteries out of sight and out of the reach of children.

Safety Tips
  • Keep coin-sized button batteries and devices out of sight and out of reach of children
  • Dispose of used button batteries immediately. Flat batteries can still be dangerous.  Hearing aid zinc-air batteries can be disposed of in general waste or they may be be recycled - check with your local council about battery recycling.
  • If you suspect a child has swallowed a button battery, immediately go to a hospital emergency room. Do not let the child eat or drink and do not induce vomiting.
  • Call the Poisons Information Centre on 13 11 26 for additional treatment information.
  • Tell others about the risk associated with button batteries and how to keep their children safe.
  • Examine other non hearing aid equipment and make sure the battery compartment is secure

Hearing Loss Treatment


Your hearing is one of your most precious senses. This is because hearing is essential for communicating, participating, socializing, relaxing and interacting. Hearing helps you to fully enjoy your life.

Hearing loss will disrupt all aspects of your life; professional, family and social life will be impacted. This is because it affects your ability to communicate and participate and it may lead to feeling frustrated, discouraged, embarrassed, isolated and even depressed.

Our blog on ‘Everything you need to know about hearing loss’ has details on signs and symptoms of hearing loss, why you should have your hearing tested and information on available rebates, funding or compensation.

There are five stages that people go through when coping with hearing loss and they are similar to the stages people go through when they grieve a passing of a loved one or any loss that alters their life. Before you can come to terms with hearing loss, you will go through the following five stages: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and finally acceptance. The duration of each stage varies greatly from individual to individual and it may be a process of moving forward and backwards through the stages.

At MAC our audiologists understand the emotional impact of hearing loss and can empathise and help you work through each stage.

Denial
The first stage is denying any hearing difficulty. If you attend a hearing assessment, it is only on the insistence of a family member. You may deny any difficulties, “my hearing is fine, you speak very softly”

Anger
When you can no longer deny it, for example after a diagnosis of hearing loss, feelings of anger, rage, envy and resentment may ensue, and you may lash out blaming others and anything in your frustration.

Bargaining
A period of bargaining follows, this is really an attempt to postpone getting your hearing tested or purchasing hearing aids. You may make excuses.
“my hearing isn’t that bad if only people didn’t mumble”

Depression
Anger and postponement are soon replaced with a sense of loss and sinking into depression, you become tired of saying “pardon”, “what” and begin to withdraw “I won’t go to the club because I can’t hear what is going on”

Acceptance
You will sooner or later come to terms with the hearing loss and seek a solution
“what can I do to hear better”

It is important to address hearing loss earlier rather than later because long term untreated sensorineural (or permanent conductive) hearing loss leads to auditory deprivation; a weakening of the auditory neural system affecting the brain’s ability to understand speech. Auditory deprivation can also occur with poorly fitted hearing aids that do not deliver adequate sound to the brain or with monaurally fitted hearing aids when there is a hearing loss in both ears.

Just like trying to look both ways with one eye, walking with one leg or trying to cut your steak with one hand, hearing with only one ear is also difficult, limiting and physically tiring.

Brains are designed to work with two ears. Information from both ears is used to help you identify the direction of sounds, distinguish speech in noise and deliver a balanced stereo quality to sound.

If you have hearing loss in both ears, two well-fitted hearing aids will allow:
  • A "stereo" or balanced sound between the ears
  • Increased ability to pin-point the direction of sounds
  • Better hearing of sounds from all directions
  • Ease of communication with people who are situated on either side of you
  • Increased comfort because the volume in each hearing aid does not need to be as loud as when only wearing one
  • Reduced risk of auditory deprivation this is where the brain's ability to understand speech diminishes over time because it is not receiving enough sound stimulation.

The benefits of wearing two hearing aids, and in protecting the brain from auditory depravation, are well worth the additional cost. To this end, we always recommend two lower cost aids rather than one higher cost aid when there are budgetary considerations.

Hearing loss, in most cases, occurs gradually over time. As a result, many people wait months or even longer before seeking professional help. You cannot delay doing something about your hearing loss and think that it will not affect you.

This is because, understanding sounds that you hear including speech, involves so much more than just the ear.

Once the ear has detected sound, it is sent via neural pathways to the many areas of the brain that process it. This allows you to understand what the ear has detected, whether it is music, environmental sounds or the spoken words. It is your brain that actually “hears and understands”.

Hearing loss can prevent some of the sounds getting to the brain. As the hearing gets worse, the brain receives less and less sound stimulation and the hearing nerves and areas in the brain responsible for the processing of sound start to weaken. This is known in the field of hearing science as “auditory deprivation”. Even if the hearing levels don’t change, over time the brain continues being deprived of certain sounds and the effects on the brain are ongoing. Ultimately the brain can “forget” how to hear and process sounds properly and the largest effect is seen on the ability to understand speech.

The longer you go without sound, the greater the reduction of speech understanding and the more permanent the effect. Clinical studies are repeatedly showing that the sooner a hearing problem is addressed – usually by the use of hearing aids- the better.

In summary, the effects of auditory deprivation are:
  • Trouble understanding speech
  • Significant difficulty understanding speech in background noise
  • Difficulty identifying where sound is coming from
  • Psychological - anxiety, denial, frustrations, fatigue, shame, social isolation, depression, grief
  • Dementia - people with severe hearing loss are more likely to develop cognitive decline
The best ways to prevent auditory deprivation are:
  • Protect your hearing so you don't get a hearing loss in the first place
  • If you feel you may have a hearing loss have it tested as soon as possible
  • If you do have a hearing loss, early amplification (the use of hearing aids) can prevent auditory deprivation and help get the hearing pathways in the brain working again
  • If you know you have a hearing loss, hearing aids have been recommended but you haven't made a decision to acquire them, don't delay further - give us a call on 1300 761 021
  • If you have hearing loss and have hearing aids but are not wearing them, try to wear them or contact us so we can help you

Batteries used in hearing aids are small “button” size batteries and may be a hazard to young children.

In fact, these small coin size batteries are found everywhere in the home including in TV remote controls, kitchen and bathroom scales, flameless candles and tea lights, reading lights, calculators, and talking books, not only hearing aids.

Due to the relatively high number of batteries used with hearing aids – hearing aid batteries will last between 1 and 4 weeks – it is important that all hearing aid users and carers of people using hearing aids are vigilant at keeping batteries out of sight and out of the reach of children.

Safety Tips
  • Keep coin-sized button batteries and devices out of sight and out of reach of children
  • Dispose of used button batteries immediately. Flat batteries can still be dangerous.  Hearing aid zinc-air batteries can be disposed of in general waste or they may be be recycled - check with your local council about battery recycling.
  • If you suspect a child has swallowed a button battery, immediately go to a hospital emergency room. Do not let the child eat or drink and do not induce vomiting.
  • Call the Poisons Information Centre on 13 11 26 for additional treatment information.
  • Tell others about the risk associated with button batteries and how to keep their children safe.
  • Examine other non hearing aid equipment and make sure the battery compartment is secure