It is estimated that more than 30 million Americans suffer from hearing loss, and the problem can affect people of all ages. At least 1.4 million of those who suffer are children, and 65% are under the age of 65. Related: 5 Awesome Healthcare Careers With Salaries Over 100k Often thought of as a problem of aging, the fact is that hearing loss can affect people at any age. When hearing loss is suspected, a patient is often sent to see an audiologist for both diagnosis and treatment.
What Is An Audiologist?An audiologist is a healthcare professional who evaluates, diagnoses and treats hearing loss in adults and children. Most audiologists hold a doctorate degree in audiology from accredited universities or colleges. In addition, most states demand that audiologists be licensed, requiring further testing or continuing education.
What Does An Audiologist Do?An audiologist treats all types of hearing loss, which are almost all treatable in some manner. An audiologist can:
- Examine and assess patients reporting hearing loss
- Prescribe and fit hearing aids
- Design and implement hearing conservation programs
- Develop newborn hearing screening programs
- Provide hearing rehabilitation programs
- Counsel patients on alternative communication methods such as lip reading or sign language
- Conduct research on the causes and treatment of common hearing loss causes