6 Ways To Finance Your Hearing Aids

While they are a necessary investment in your overall wellbeing, hearing aids can be quite expensive, especially if you are paying for them out-of-pocket.

Here at Heroes of Hearing, we have helped many people determine their hearing aid financing options and wanted to share what other patients have done to cover the cost of their hearing devices.

1. Contact Your Insurance Provider

While hearing aids are sometimes not covered by insurance, it is worth checking with your insurance to check if your need for hearing aids would qualify you. We can help you by running a precheck on your insurance during your hearing test consultation with our hearing instrument specialist.

2. Heroes Of Hearing Offers Financing Options

We offer several financing options at our hearing clinic to help you afford your hearing aids. Along with accepting credit cards, we also work with these health financing organizations:

  • Care Credit
  • Wells Fargo Health Advantage
  • AllWell

With payment plans ranging from month-to-month, with 6-12 month plans which are interest-free, you are sure to find a financing plan to suit your needs.

3. Consider A Personal Loan

If you prefer to secure your own financing, a personal loan from your bank or credit union is also a good option to help you finance your hearing aids. Depending on your credit score and length of time you’ve worked with them, you may be able to receive a better offer.

4. Work With A Hearing-Centered Charity

There are a variety of hearing-related charities, though much of their efforts are focused on underdeveloped nations. But there are two charities in particular that Heroes of Hearing admires, which are:

  • Starkey Hearing Foundation – The Starkey Hearing Foundation has helped many people receive free or low-cost hearing aids and work on a global scale. You can contact them for assistance with financing your hearing aids.
  • Hometown Hero Project – We have partnered with the Hometown Hero Project to provide military veterans with a discount on the hearing services they need, ranging from tinnitus assistance to discounted hearing devices.

5. Check FSA or HSA Accounts

If you have a medical flexible spending account (FSA) or health spending account (HSA), needing hearing aids can be an approved reason to dip into these savings accounts without paying taxes.

6. Reach Out To Others Through Crowdfunding

For those who have a spread out support system, reaching out through crowdfunding platforms such as GoFundMe, Indiegogo, and others is a great way to allow others to offer financial assistance. Also, you never know when a kind stranger may help you finance your hearing aids.

Our hearing specialist is committed to helping as many people as possible overcome their hearing difficulties. If you want to work with a professional who will always put your needs first, contact us to consult with our hearing specialist.

Reasons You Don’t Wear Your Hearing Aids (And Why You Should)

When someone makes an investment in hearing aids, it can be a real epiphany. Once they’ve adjusted to the cafeteria of sounds the world has to offer and their sheer volume, it can feel like they’ve been given a new lease on life. So it may come as a surprise to hear that many people end up leaving their hearing aids unused in a drawer.

At Heroes of Hearing, we’re all-too-familiar with the many reasons people become disenchanted with their hearing aids. While the various rationales may be valid, each has a simple solution.

Your Hearing Aids Aren’t Comfortable

One of the main reasons people don’t wear their hearing aids is they find them uncomfortable. If this is the reason your hearing aids are lying unused, it’s likely they weren’t fitted properly. Or, you may be wearing an older model that lacks the comfort of sleeker new hearing aids.

Often, finding the most comfortable fit starts with settling on the right style of hearing aids. The following options, all of which rest snugly in the ear, are all custom-shaped:

  • Invisible-In-Canal (IIC) hearing aids (mild-to-moderate hearing loss)
  • Completely-In-Canal (CIC) hearing aids (mild-to-moderate hearing loss)
  • In-The-Canal (ITC) hearing aids ( mild-to-severe hearing loss)

Behind-The-Ear hearing aids can also be quite comfortable. You just want the tube that extends down to your ear canal to end in a custom-fitted earmold. At Heroes of Hearing, we will work with you until you find the perfect fit.

Your Hearing Aids Are No Longer Effective

Our hearing changes over time, whether due to noise-related damage or aging. Did you get fitted with hearing aids that once worked well for you, only to find the world now sounds muffled and muted when you wear them?

It’s likely you’re wearing outdated hearing aids. You may need new ones or your existing hearing aids may need to be reprogrammed to reflect your current level of hearing loss. If you suspect this is the case, we encourage you to come to Heroes of Hearing for an exam. It’ll help us ensure your hearing devices are up to date.

You’re Tired Of Changing Your Hearing Aid Batteries

Some people feel overwhelmed with the ongoing need to change out their hearing aid batteries.
You need to keep new hearing batteries on hand. And if you have a smaller hearing aid style, it can be difficult fiddling with tiny devices and even tinier batteries.

If battery care is leaving you drained, you might want to consider getting a larger style of hearing aid. Or, you can see about getting fitted with a rechargeable hearing aid model like Widex Beyond Z receiver-in-canal style hearing aids.

You’re Embarrassed To Wear Your Hearing Aids

Not only are some people embarrassed to wear their hearing aids, they’re embarrassed that they’re embarrassed to wear their hearing aids. Talk about a double-whammy!

We all want to think that once we’re out of high school, we’ve evolved to become less self-conscious. The truth is that we all retain certain areas of vanity. Some people view wearing hearing aids as a signal to the world that they’re old and “out of it” when, in fact, by correcting hearing impairment they’re actually remaining in the mix of our ever-changing society.

Other people, especially if they wear the behind-the-ear style, don’t want their hearing aid to detract from a glam look like upswept hair.

If you feel your large hearing aids are cramping your style, you might want to consider one of the more discreet models. For instance, Invisible-in-Canal Hearing Aids are, as the name implies, virtually invisible.

Why You Should Wear Your Hearing Aids

It’s crucial to wear your hearing aids and not just because they allow you to hear the speech and ambient sounds all around you. Wearing hearing aids can help keep your hearing from deteriorating further. This is because if you deprive yourself from sound input, it can cause the auditory nerve that processes speech to atrophy. Further, untreated hearing loss has been linked with a greater risk of dementia.

While there are many reasons people don’t wear their hearing aids, there are more reasons why you should. If you’re one of the many people shelving your hearing aids, contact us today for an appointment. We’ll help you overcome any hurdles keeping you from what everyone deserves: to hear loud and clear.

You Heard It From The Hearing Specialist: The Best Hearing Aids on the Market

When it comes to enhancing something as precious as your hearing, it’s important to invest in the best possible devices. It can be hard, though, to navigate the slew of available hearing aids to find the ones that are right for you.

At Heroes of Hearing, we carry all major brands of hearing aids. There are a few, however, that have particularly impressed our hearing instrument specialist and patients alike. Here’s a brief overview of 4 the best hearing aid brands on the market.

Oticon

Oticon is a Danish-based company that’s more than a century old. Along with creating some of the most innovative hearing aid tech, Oticon dedicates resources to the Oticon Hearing Foundation. The nonprofit helps underserved people across the globe get the hearing aids they need. Unitron models include:

  • Opn (Behind-The-Ear or BTE and Receiver-In-Canal or RIC)
  • Alta2 (BTE, RIC, In-the-Ear or ITE)
  • Dynamo (BTE)

Starkey

Starkey is an American hearing aid company that’s more than a half-century old. They focus on making quality hearing products and ensuring customers have access to the latest hearing aid tech. The company also operates a charitable arm, the Starkey Hearing Foundation, that’s helped underprivileged people in more than 100 countries get the hearing aids they need. Starkey models include:

  • Muse (micro-RIC, mini-BTE, ITE, In-The-Canal or ITC or Completely-In-The-Canal)
  • Halo (RIC)
  • SoundLens (Invisible-In-The-Canal or IIC)
  • Synergy (IIC)

All of Starkey hearing aid models can be equipped with a tinnitus management tool called Multiflex Tinnitus Technology (MTT). MTT streams a sound stimulus right into your hearing aids that can help ease the distressing effects of persistent phantom sound.

Unitron

With more than 50 years in the hearing aid industry, the Canadian-based company Unitron prides itself on helping users be an active part of the conversation. Unitron hearing aids can help wearers perceive speech from all directions, even in challenging environments like noisy venues or crowds with multiple speakers. Unitron models include:

  • Flex (RIC)
  • Insera (ITE)
  • Max (BTE)
  • Moxi (RIC)
  • Stride (RIC and BTE)

Widex

Headquartered in Denmark, the Widex company is more than 60 years old. Among the 6th biggest hearing aid manufacturers worldwide, Widex aims to equip all of its hearing aids with the most natural sound. Innovation in the area of hearing tech is another priority. Widex hearing aid models include:

  • Evoke (all hearing aid styles)
  • Beyond (RIC)
  • Beyond Z (RIC)
  • Custom (ITE)
  • Unique (all hearing aid styles)

Every Hearing Aid User Has Different Needs And Priorities

Rather than pushing certain models on customers, our hearing aid specialist works to fit you with hearing aids that match your budget as well as your hearing needs. Factors in determining which hearing aids are right for you include what style you want—from BTE to virtually invisible options—and whether you want relatively bare-bones devices or those equipped with tech like Bluetooth-enabled wireless streaming.

If you’re ready to upgrade your hearing aids or get fitted with hearing aids for the first time, our hearing instrument specialist is ready to help you find your best solution. Contact us to make an appointment for top-notch care, from a comprehensive hearing exam to a review of your hearing and tech needs to an expert fitting.

Our Personal Hearing Heroes: The American Tinnitus Association

At Heroes of Hearing, one of our main areas of expertise is helping people manage tinnitus.

We understand how distressing the persistent phantom sounds of tinnitus can be, so we consider finding ways to treat and cure this condition to be of paramount importance. That’s why we’ve chosen the American Tinnitus Association as one of our personal heroes.

The Trouble With Tinnitus

A staggering 45 million Americans are affected by tinnitus, with the constant din in their ears ranging from ringing to roaring and from buzzing to clicking.

Tinnitus can have some pretty troubling side effects, including:

  • Anxiety
  • Concentration problems
  • Depression
  • Fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Memory problems
  • Sleep problems
  • Stress

The Mission of the American Tinnitus Association

Enter the American Tinnitus Association (ATA), a nonprofit organization that promotes relief for people suffering from tinnitus and advocates for its prevention. The ATA also works to bring attention and scientific focus to this disorder, with its efforts including the funding of target research projects.

Prevention

One of the ways the ATA works to silence the sound of tinnitus is by educating people about prevention. Here at Heroes of Hearing, we agree that “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

One of the main causes of tinnitus is exposure to loud noise. We advise our patients—particularly those who are regularly exposed to loud noise—to get fitted with custom earplugs. Ear protection is especially important for:

  • Construction workers
  • Concert or sporting event aficionados
  • Musicians
  • Swimmers

Relief

The ATA also works to educate tinnitus sufferers and their allies on the latest tinnitus management tools.

At Heroes of Hearing, we stay up-to-date on effective tinnitus treatments so we can help alleviate our patients’ symptoms. These include:

  • Sound therapy
  • Hearing aids with built-in tinnitus management tools
  • Counseling

Finding a Cure

Over the last 35 years, the American Tinnitus Association has contributed nearly $6 million in grants to scientists working toward a cure. The ATA seeks to share any scientific breakthroughs with people suffering from tinnitus and the hearing professionals that treat them.

This component of the ATA’s mission is hugely important for people living with tinnitus because the lack of a cure is one of the most dispiriting aspects of this condition.

Community

Despite the large number of people who have tinnitus, those with this disorder can feel very alone. Without help and guidance, they may experience a sense of hopelessness and despair.

With this in mind, the American Tinnitus Association has a vigorous outreach program that provides a sense of community to people with tinnitus.

The ATA sponsors a regular “Conversations in Tinnitus” podcast and also provides resources for people interested in forming a tinnitus support group in their area. These groups let tinnitus sufferers gather face-to-face, sharing advice and support and receiving education from local hearing professionals.

The ATA also helps coordinate the efforts of people who have volunteered to communicate with fellow tinnitus sufferers through telephone and email. Help Network volunteers provide compassion and support to their correspondents, often by simply by sharing their own experiences and perspectives.

If you or a loved one is plagued by tinnitus, contact us to arrange a consultation with one of our tinnitus experts at Heroes of Hearing.

Common Hearing Aid Questions Answered By Russell Broadhead, HIS

It can be tough to think of all the hearing aid questions you have while at our hearing clinic. To help you find reliable answers, our hearing instrument specialist, Russell Broadhead, has provided answers to some of the most common hearing aid questions.

How long will my hearing aid last?

On average, hearing aids will last for 3-5 years. With excellent maintenance, they can last longer. Also, some hearing aids are built with greater care, which helps them last longer than average.

Even if your hearing aids last beyond the average lifespan, you should still come in for your yearly hearing test. If your hearing loss has progressed, it is crucial to fit you with the proper hearing aids to prevent further loss.

Can I wear my hearing aids as I sleep?

Hearing aids can become damaged as you sleep if you wear them to bed. Most people move in their sleep, and this movement can jar your hearing aids, causing them to fall out or become caught and damaged. So, be sure to take them out every night.

Where should I keep my hearing aids when I’m not using them?

When you are not using your hearing aids, be sure to place them inside of the hard-shelled case you received with your hearing aids. This case will keep them safe from accidents and help you locate your hearing aids more easily.

Also, make sure you open your hearing aid battery doors when your hearing devices are not in use. This step will help prolong your battery life and hearing aids.

Is there a special way to dispose of hearing aid batteries?

Batteries of any kind can be corrosive, so it is essential to dispose of them properly. Hearing aid batteries should be kept separate from your regular trash. You should be able to find a place for hearing aid battery recycling at most electronic stores.

Why is my hearing aid making a strange sound?

Hearing aids are sensitive devices that need a good deal of care to operate properly. Check your hearing aid settings to ensure your volume levels are correct and the telecoil setting is off. If you hear a squealing sound, take out your hearing aids and place them back in, as they will often squeal if not placed correctly.

How often should I clean my hearing aid?

Depending on what you are cleaning, some parts of your hearing aids will need to be cleaned daily. Be sure to wipe them down with a soft cloth every day after using them and clean all the openings once a week.

You should also bring your hearing aids into our hearing office at Heroes of Hearing every 3 months for a professional cleaning. This level of cleaning will keep your hearing aids in top condition and help extend their lifespan.

Are my hearing aids waterproof?

While some of the higher-end hearing aids are water-resistant, no hearing aids should be immersed in water. Before you go to do any activity with water, take out your hearing aids to keep them safe.

If you have more hearing aid questions or other hearing-related concerns, contact us. Our hearing instrument specialist will be glad to help you.

Fine Tune Your Hearing Aids For The Tucson Regional Ballet

Here in Tucson, Arizona, we are lucky to have the Tucson Regional Ballet. If you have been thinking about catching a performance, either because you know a performer or just love ballet, you should make sure your hearing aids are in good working order or your show may be spoiled.

The Tucson Regional Ballet Engages Your Sight And Hearing

Founded in 1983, the Tucson Regional Ballet has been dedicated to bringing the beauty of ballet to people without the high prices of other ballet companies. Along with their regular low prices, the Tucson Regional Ballet offers school shows for chaperones to come with students and even brings their performances to local nursing homes and senior centers for free.

To catch their December production of “A Southwest Nutcracker,” featuring the Tucson Symphony Orchestra, check out their website and the map below for their location.

How Hearing Loss Affects Ballet Performance Enjoyment

Not only does the Tucson Regional Ballet engage your eyes in a visual feast of acrobatic skill, but the stories they tell with their dancing are conveyed by the sweeping orchestral music. However, if you are struggling with hearing loss, you may miss out on some of the experience of attending a live ballet performance.

Hearing loss often affects the high-frequency range, leaving an individual with hearing loss straining to hear. This loss would be particularly noticeable during poignant moments where only violins or flutes play to indicate the feelings of the dancer. Without the audible clues, it is easy to lose track of the story being conveyed.

Ways To Prepare For A Ballet Show

To avoid missing out on any moment of the ballet, come by the Heroes of Hearing office. Our hearing instrument specialist can help you prepare for the performance in several ways:

  • Hearing aid repair – Hearing aids should be professionally cleaned every 3 months. This cleaning allows our hearing instrument specialist to check for any damage that may be impairing your hearing and help you extend the longevity of your hearing aids.
  • Hearing test – Sometimes your hearing aids are no longer powerful enough to provide you with the level of hearing to match your hearing loss. Our hearing specialist can give you a hearing test to evaluate if your hearing aids are right for you.
  • Earwax removal – Some models of hearing aid are more prone to causing earwax buildup, which can impact your ability to hear. You can have that earwax safely removed by our hearing specialist.

To make an appointment to have your hearing taken care of by our hearing specialist, contact us today.

What’s New In Hearing Aid Tech: Starkey’s Livio AI Smart Hearing Aids

Starkey has rolled out new hearing aid technology that may revolutionize how everyone regards hearing aids. Their new hearing aids are called the Livio AI, and they utilize artificial intelligence to give users a more intuitive listening experience, from translating foreign languages to step tracking.

New Tech In Starkey Livio AI Hearing Aids

It may sound like a space-age dream, but the Livio AI really can provide direct language translation in 27 different languages. As long as you have an internet connection, the Livio AI hearing aids can translate with about a half-second delay between speech and translation.

Other technologies packed into the Livio AI hearing aids are:

  • Thrive app syncing, so you can adjust your hearing aids via your smartphone.
  • Hearing Reality™ tech built-in to allow for enhanced hearing in noisy environments, with a focus on speech clarity.
  • Sensors are incorporated in these hearing aids, allowing them to track how many steps you take, your general activity levels, and how often you talk to others. All this information can be sent to the Thrive app, giving you a clearer picture of your overall health and fitness.
  • Stronger wireless streaming capabilities are included in the Livio AI, allowing you to directly stream phone calls, music, TV, and other types of media to your Livio AI hearing aids.
  • You can tag a specific area via the GPS feature on your smartphone with preset volume control for your hearing aids. So, if you tag your home with quieter volume settings, your Livio AI hearing aids will automatically change when you enter the area you have tagged as home.
  • Customize your tinnitus management through the Thrive app thanks to the Advanced Multiflex Tinnitus Technology built into your Livio AI.

So, if you find out at your next hearing test that you have hearing loss and need hearing aids, you may want to seriously consider these amazing hearing aids.

Where To Find Starkey And Other Hearing Aids

For those living in the Tucson, AZ area who are interested in these revolutionary hearing aids, Heroes of Hearing is the hearing clinic where you can find Starkey products. Along with Starkey hearing products, we carry a variety of other major hearing aid brands, allowing you to have a wide selection.

We also offer other hearing services such as comprehensive hearing tests, earwax removal, hearing aid repairs, tinnitus treatment, and more. To work with our experienced hearing instrument specialist, feel free to schedule an appointment today.

Find More Laughs at Laffs Tucson With The Help Of Improved Hearing

There are few activities more therapeutic than having a good laugh, one of the reasons many people enjoy heading out to a comedy club.

If you’re suffering from untreated hearing loss, however, a public entertainment like a stand-up routine can feel more like torture. It’s exhausting straining to hear what the comic is saying and figure out why everyone around you is “rolling in the aisles.”

Where To Catch Comedy In Tucson

One possible destination for quality comedy shows in Tucson is Laffs Comedy Caffe, southern Arizona’s comedy headquarters. The club has been around since 1988 and played host to luminaries like Jerry Seinfeld, Tim Allen, Damon Wayans, Maria Bamford, and late comedy legend Robin Williams.

The comedians hitting the stage at places like Laffs Comedy Caffe, the first and only comedy club in Tucson, have a knack for pointing out the lighter side of life. They give audiences some much-needed perspective in a stressful and stressed-out world.

When you have trouble making out what public speakers are saying, from your pastor at church to the jokester on the stage, there’s some irony at play. If you’re living with hearing loss, you’re more in need of words of wisdom or a good chuckle than ever, because untreated hearing loss can lead to depression and anxiety.

Treat Your Hearing Loss and Rejoin The Social Whirl

If impaired hearing makes a night on the town cause for worry rather than celebration, it’s time you scheduled an appointment with Heroes of Hearing. Our hearing specialist can offer you:

  • Hearing evaluation – With a comprehensive hearing evaluation, our hearing instrument specialist will be able to pinpoint the source of your hearing loss. Once your hearing loss is identified, whether it is due to impacted cerumen (earwax) or sensorineural hearing loss, our hearing specialist will be able to help you.
  • Hearing aids – Our hearing instrument specialist can fit you with customized hearing aids and work to address any additional issues like tinnitus. With the right hearing aids, you can enjoy outings again.
  • Ear protection – If you are going to be in particularly noisy environments, it is important to have ear protection like earplugs. Our hearing specialist can offer custom earplugs for concert-goers, musicians, hunters, and others who may need high-quality earplugs.

    Your return to hearing will leave you ready to move from self-imposed social isolation to a night on the town. So, if you’re ready to raise your hearing level as well as your spirits, contact us for an appointment with our hearing specialist.

    Keep Your Memory Sharp By Maintaining Healthy Hearing

    It’s a foregone conclusion that hearing aids can help you hear better. Did you know, however, that treating hearing loss can help keep your memory sharp?

    A 2001 study at Johns Hopkins University established a clear connection between hearing loss and dementia. Researchers followed nearly 2,000 older Americans over the course of six years. Some participants had hearing loss and others could hear well, but started out with healthy cognitive skills.

    At the conclusion of the study, scientists found those in the cohort with mild hearing loss were twice as likely to have developed dementia as the subjects with normal hearing. Participants with moderate and severe hearing loss had three and five times, respectively, more chance of having dementia than those who heard well.  

    Researchers had some hypotheses to explain these results. One is that straining to hear on an ongoing basis can tax your brain, leaving you vulnerable to cognitive decline. Another theory points to the isolation associated with untreated hearing loss; loneliness is a risk factor for developing cognitive disorders like dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

    Whatever the cause, your ability to hear sound can help keep you sound of mind. If you suspect you may be losing your hearing, it’s time to make an appointment with  Heroes of Hearing.

    Untreated Hearing Loss Is Widespread

    People wait an average of 10 years after their initial diagnosis to be fitted with hearing aids.

    This lengthy lag, paired with the high number of people experiencing hearing loss—17 percent of adult Americans and nearly half of those 75 and older—prompted the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association to declare that untreated hearing loss is a national epidemic.

    Some people put off treatment because the progression of their hearing loss is so slow as to be insidious, or because they experience hearing loss in only one ear. They may not notice how much effort it takes to compensate.

    Others avoid being fitted with hearing aids because they don’t want to face the fact that they need them. In our youth-centric society, there may be a stigma that hearing aids are for “old people.” Others, remembering the sizeable devices that were once commonly used, fear hearing aids will be unsightly.

    The truth is people of all ages experience hearing loss. And with new technological developments,  hearing aids can be smaller and more discreet than ever.

    It’s Time To Address Your Hearing Loss

    Some 48 million Americans have hearing loss. If people in this group considered the link between declining hearing and declining brain function, they might be more likely to stop procrastinating and seek treatment. Other problems associated with untreated hearing loss include:

    • Depression and anxiety
    • Irritability
    • Fatigue
    • Social withdrawal
    • Reduced alertness

    It’s to time ask for aid with your hearing loss, looking out for your mind as well as your ears.  Along with hearing tests and hearing aids, Heroes of Hearing offers:

    • Hearing aid repair
    • Hearing aid accessories
    • Tinnitus treatment and counseling
    • Preventative devices like ear-protecting headphones

    Our hearing aid specialist and his qualified staff are ready to help you hear, and think, better. Contact us today to make your appointment.