Audiologist versus Hearing Aid Dispenser

closup of doctor's face

For non-specialists, it can be easy to mix up industry terms. After all, some of them sound the same, such as a hearing aid dispenser and audiologist. Don’t they both do the same thing and provide hearing loss testing and devices? While these are some of the solutions, they offer their customers, they aren’t mutually exclusive. In short, an audiologist and a hearing aid dispenser are two very separate entities. To better understand your options and determine which professional is right for you, consider the following differences between these specialists:

Audiologists: What they provide

One of the main things that set an audiologist apart from a hearing aid dispenser is qualifications. Audiologists have rigorous educational and training requirements, including an undergraduate and graduate-level degree. As a result, they can provide a diagnosis of auditory pathology for the sake of their patients. Anyone with issues, or who thinks they have the warning signs of hearing loss, can go to an audiologist and get a full breakdown of the next steps and the treatments.

Another difference is that they provide recommendations based on their analysis. With an audiologist, you can trust their advice and use it to better your lifestyle. Non-medical treatments are also available at a hearing center. For example, here at Northgate Hearing Services, we offer hearing loss tests and device fittings as well as hearing aids and their accessories.

Losing your hearing can be a tough transition, which is why individual hearing centers provide hearing loss counseling. If they don’t offer the treatment but think it may help, an audiologist will make a referral to another specialist.

Hearing aid dispensers: Their services

Qualifications-wise, a hearing aid dispenser doesn’t have the same licenses or permits as an audiologist. They are licensed to provide hearing aids and accessories and nothing else other than hearing screening. However, the testing is to fit a device and not for treatment of an ear-related issue.

They may also offer services that relate to their products, such as repairs. If you are not happy with your devices, you can ask a dispenser to take a look and make general fixes.

Which one do you need?

In most cases, an audiologist is the best hearing professional you can see. Thanks to years of studying and real-time experience, a qualified audiologist can transform your life. From the social to career side of life, and the everyday aspect, proper recommendation and fitting centers on the skill of the person in charge.

They have a wide range of knowledge and services because of their extensive education, whether you need assistance with hearing loss or require tinnitus treatment. Their comprehensive testing is able to provide more accurate results. Understanding that you suffer from hearing loss is a significant part of the treatment because 25% of people with symptoms don’t realize it. By scheduling a test, they will work out the problem and advise you on your options. From fitting aids to removing wax, you should be able to regain control of your hearing and enhance your lifestyle. They also provide hearing aid services like fittings, adjustments, cleanings and repairs, as well as solutions for conditions like tinnitus or balance problems.

They can also recommend the best technologies for your particular set of needs. As a result, you can pick the device that suits your needs and makes you comfortable. With various styles on offer, you don’t have to worry about your device being awkward or discreet. The process is an art, and it takes multiple appointments to get it right. Therefore, you will spend a lot of time with your hearing professional developing a relationship. As a doctor would, an audiologist learns to understand your body and how it reacts. Not only that, but they figure out what works and what is ineffective, which allows them to tailor your treatment to your needs.

Northgate Hearing Services

At Northgate Hearing Services, we go the extra mile for our patients. That means our audiologists have more than just their extensive education – they also have an extra 25 hours of continuing education per year. We want to stay on top of trends, which is why this is a minimum. Some audiologists have more hours under their belts, which helps us to provide the superior hearing care you need and deserve.

If you want to learn more Northgate and our services, you can call 206-367-1345 and speak with one of our helpful and friendly team members today.

COVID-19 INFORMATION:

As of April 27, 2020, the office has reopened to further support patient care needs. In an effort to keep our patients, staff and community safe, we will be limiting the number of patients seen per day. We will be creating time buffers between patients to assist in social distancing and in-depth cleaning between appointments. Read more