Hearing is a complex sense, so it is no wonder that patients sometimes have trouble deciding which type of professional to see for different hearing issues.
At a high level, an Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) physician is a doctor who specializes in diagnosing and treating diseases of the ear, nose, mouth, and throat. In contrast, an audiologist is a hearing healthcare professional who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of hearing loss. Audiologists have extensive knowledge of the human auditory system and are specially trained in how to accurately fit and adjust hearing aids. You might think of audiologists as “hearing doctors”.
Based on these distinctions, you would want to first seek out an audiologist if you have noticed a change in your hearing or if you have been struggling to understand people in day to day situations. A decrease in hearing can manifest itself in many ways, for instance, asking people to repeat themselves, having more trouble hearing in crowds, having difficulty with women or children’s voices, or tinnitus (a ringing in the ears). In some cases, your audiologist might choose to refer you to an ENT physician based on their exam of the ear, or if you have a medical condition that could be associated with hearing loss, like an autoimmune disorder.
If you have a sudden hearing loss, you should speak immediately to your physician. Although this type of hearing loss often needs to be treated with hearing aids later on, it is important to have a medical evaluation to check for any serious medical conditions that might have caused the sudden change in hearing. You should also speak to an ENT physician if you are experiencing balance issues or ear pain, or have had trauma to the head or ear.
Many ENT physicians work with audiologists to provide comprehensive hearing health care to their patients. Therefore, if the physician determines that you need a hearing aid, he or she may send you to the audiologist after your initial exam to determine the best hearing aid for your needs. Likewise, your audiologist may send you to the ENT if additional medical evaluation is needed before proceeding with a hearing treatment. Some hearing solutions, like the Earlens Hearing Aid, require an ENT physician and audiologist to work together. This ensures a complete approach to hearing health and a high standard of care for patients.
To find an Earlens ENT physician and audiologist near you, search for an Earlens provider.
About the Earlens Light-Driven Hearing Aid
The Earlens Light-Driven Hearing Aid is one of the best hearing aids for providing audible amplification across a broad frequency range. Earlens is a digital hearing aid that uses light to transmit sound for the most complete hearing available from a hearing aid. Earlens automatically adjusts to noisy environments and uses a rechargeable battery with wireless charging for enhanced ease of use. Learn more about Earlens’ new hearing aid technology and full product details.
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