What is a hearing aid dispenser?
A hearing aid dispenser is licensed through the State of California to perform Functional Hearing Assessments, and after verifying health of the auditory system, conducts Communication Needs Assessments to help patients achieve their communication goals.
What led you to this type of work?
After becoming certified as a Medical Assistant, I was excited to start in a particular field and when a position in audiology became available, I felt it would be a perfect specialty where I would be able to incorporate my background in electronics (in my previous career) to help people with their communication needs.
What is the most common issue or issues that you see today regarding hearing loss?
Some of the most common issues are tinnitus, not hearing speech clearly and difficulty hearing in noisy environments, all of which are treatable with the proper fitting of technology.
Would you like to share a patient experience with us that made an impression on you?
One I will always remember was a gentleman who was accompanied by his wife. He had lost hearing in his right ear a few years prior to coming to see us. We fit him with type of hearing device called a CROS system (Contralateral Routing of Signals) which picks up sound incoming to the ear with no hearing and transfers it to the better hearing ear. I fit the hearing devices on him and while I was programming them, his wife was speaking on his right side and he immediately stopped talking, I turned toward him to see if he was ok, and saw tears running down his face. He stated it had been so long since he has heard his wife while she was sitting on his right side. While I realized we continually help people every day, this really brought home for me the impact of how much of an effect hearing can have on a person’s life.
Why do you like working with patients?
I enjoy meeting and getting to know new people and listening to their accounts of their experiences and challenges. I find great joy in helping people overcome their individual communication barriers and in seeing them happy, confident and hearing well. I can truly say it is the most rewarding aspect of my job.
Do you love researching new interventions?
I have a keen interest in new technology of many types, especially when it comes to helping our patients deal with a variety of hearing losses. It is exciting to me to learn of the advances in technology and to be able to relay and adapt it to each person’s needs for them to experience so they can achieve their best possible outcome.