So you ve had your hearing tested. What s next?

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1 So you ve had your hearing tested. What s next?

2 Nancy is wearing micro behind-the-ear hearing aids

3 Hearing matters By recently having your hearing tested, you ve taken a very important step. Discovering that you have a hearing loss can be difficult to accept at first and you re not alone. Many people with hearing loss wait years to take action. That s a long time to live with an issue that can be readily addressed with hearing aids. Today there s such a wide choice of hearing aids to suit every need, style and budget: the benefits truly outweigh the costs. Your hearing test shows you re a great candidate for hearing aids. We hope this brochure will give you the information you need to feel good about taking the next step. What does your test say about your hearing? Turn the page to find out. Why now is the time to take action If you re feeling hesitant about taking the next step, consider the vast improvements in quality of life experienced by people who take action and address their hearing loss. Studies 1 have shown that once they begin using hearing aids, people enjoy great improvements in social, emotional, psychological, and physical well-being, including: Communication in relationships Intimacy and warmth in family relationships Ease of communication Physical health Sense of control over life events Emotional stability Perception of mental functioning Earning power Participation in social situations

4 Understanding your hearing test results The results of your hearing test are used to develop an audiogram which shows the degree and type of hearing loss you have. It reveals how well you hear a range of pitches, particularly those most common in speech sounds. Your audiogram shows that you would benefit from wearing hearing aids. Increasing pitch (Hz) Increasing loudness (db HL) z v j mdb i n o ng e l u a r p h c h sh g k t f s th Audiogram basics Across the top of the graph, the audiogram displays pitch (frequency), measured in hertz (Hz) the lower the number, the lower the pitch. Along the side of the graph, labeled increasing loudness, is the measurement of sound volume in decibels hearing level (db HL) the lower the number the softer the sound. The softest sound you are able to hear at any pitch is called your hearing threshold. Xs = threshold for the left ear; Os = threshold for the right ear when sound is delivered down the ear canal. If all the Xs (left ear) and Os (right ear) fall above the db HL line, you have normal hearing. If any appear below the db HL line, you have a hearing loss.

5 Taking the next step Based on your hearing test and the type of hearing loss you have, hearing aids would be a great choice for you. 95% of people with hearing loss can benefit from the use of hearing aids. 2 If your hearing loss is in both ears, wearing two hearing aids is typically the best way to hear the most naturally. It will improve your hearing in noise, provide more natural sound quality, keep both ears active and permit better sound identification and localization. The benefits of today s hearing aids: There are many different kinds of hearing aids with unique features and looks to suit your specific hearing loss, listening environments, budget and style. Shown at actual size Hearing aids just keep getting better. In addition to technological advances, they re much smaller, blending discreetly with hair and skin tones to make some styles virtually invisible. Thanks to digital technology, hearing aids are incredibly advanced and yet still affordable. In addition to amplifying sound, they can help highlight speech, and reduce the discomfort of background noises. Some automatic hearing aids hardly need to be touched after you put them on, making them both very sophisticated and very easy to use. New hearing aid technologies allow you to wirelessly connect your modern devices with your hearing aids, including mobile phones, MP3 players, TVs and more. The sooner you act, the sooner you can reconnect with the important sounds, conversations and people in your life.

6 Communication tips and strategies While investing in hearing aids is the number-one recommendation to address your hearing loss, there are other strategies you can use alone or in combination with hearing aids to help you hear and communicate better. Almost everyone with a hearing loss does a certain amount of speech (lip) reading whether they re aware of it or not. Make eye contact with the person with whom you are speaking and make sure you can see their face and mouth clearly. Don t try to hide that you have a hearing loss. When others are aware of this, they re more likely to look directly at you when talking, speak clearly and repeat themselves if necessary. Be prepared to ask people to repeat themselves. Rather than simply saying pardon? it may be helpful to verify what you believe you heard so they can repeat only the parts you missed. Be aware of competing noises such as music, air conditioners or the refrigerator hum. If possible, turn off these noise sources or move away from them. Locate yourself close to the people whose voices you wish to hear. Anticipate your listening environment and plan ahead. Choose quieter restaurants or go at a time when it s less busy. At sit-down events, arrive early to select seating that s removed from background noise sources and closer to the presenter, if it s a speaking event. Be patient and matter-of-fact. If you can t hear what people are saying, let them know. It is not your fault, nor is it the fault of the person speaking to you. 1 Sergei Kochkin, Ph.D., Better Hearing Institute, Washington, DC 2 Kochkin

7 Paul is wearing micro behind-the-ear hearing aids

8 There s never been a better time By putting your trust in a trained and licensed hearing healthcare professional, you can be certain you re getting expert, caring and objective advice about your hearing and your options. The next step is up to you: we hope you ll give us a call to arrange a time to come in for a hearing aid fitting. Rest assured, we ll work with you every step of the way, answering questions and concerns, and providing follow-up service and advice whenever you need it. At Unitron, we care deeply about people with hearing loss. We work closely with hearing healthcare professionals to make advanced, purpose-driven solutions available to everyone. Because hearing matters. unitron.com

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