Category Archives: All Blog Posts

Audiology Credentials…what do all those letters mean?!

Patients are often confused by the series of acronyms and abbreviations listed after their audiologist’s name. Listed below are common abbreviations used and a description of what they mean.

  • Au.D.: Au.D. is the abbreviation for Doctor of Audiology. Beginning in 2007, many states adopted the Au.D. as the entry level degree required to practice Audiology. Prior to the Au.D., a master’s degree was required for clinical practice. There are no longer any professional training programs offering a master’s degree in Audiology. To obtain an Au.D., you must obtain a bachelor’s degree and complete four years of graduate school.
  • CCC-A: CCC-A stands for Certificate of Clinical Competency in Audiology. This is a voluntary certificate issued by the American Speech Language and Hearing Association (ASHA). Professionals who have been awarded the CCC-A have completed a rigorous academic program and a supervised clinical experience and have passed a national examination.
  • F-AAA: F-AAA is the abbreviation used to delineate those audiologists who are Fellows of the American Academy of Audiology. The American Academy of Audiology is the world’s largest professional organization of, by, and for audiologists. The active membership of more than 11,000 is dedicated to providing quality hearing care services through professional development, education, research, and increased public awareness of hearing and balance disorders.
  • ABA: If an audiologist uses the abbreviation “ABA” after their name, they have been awarded board certification in Audiology by the American Board of Audiology. To become board certified in audiology, one must maintain continuing education credits above and beyond what is simply required for clinical practice. ABA certification demonstrates a commitment to excellence through lifelong learning.

At JHBI, all of our audiologists have their CCC-A, are Fellows of the American Academy of Audiology, and are board certified in Audiology by the American Board of Audiology. When you visit our office Audiology care, rest assured that you will be seen by a professional with extensive training who has demonstrated a commitment to maintaining the highest levels of professional competency.

Hearing Loss: The Largest Disability in the Country?

Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that about 37 million people in the United States have a hearing loss. According to a recent article by CNN’s Jen Christensen, if hearing loss were officially considered a disability, it would rank as the largest disability class in the country.

Though hearing aids are the most widely used treatment for hearing loss, only about 20% of people who need a hearing aid actually get one. One of the biggest obstacles to treatment with hearing aids is cost. Unfortunately, most private insurance plans do not include hearing aid benefits, so most patients are forced to pay for hearing aids out of pocket.

Read below for more information on hearing loss, the “invisible disability”, and the current status of hearing aids as they relate to insurance coverage.

http://www.cnn.com/2012/07/10/health/hearing-aid-insurance/index.html?hpt=hp_c2

 

Ear Candling: Ineffective and Dangerous

Proper removal of cerumen (ear wax) is a topic that is frequently misunderstood by patients. One of the most dangerous techniques people employ to remove ear wax is known as ear candling. Ear candling is a dangerous and ineffective method of ear wax removal. For more information on ear candling, its myths, and proper ear wax removal techniques, please refer to the following article from the American Academy of Audiology.

http://www.audiology.org/news/Pages/20100622.aspx

Boomers Benefit from Hearing Aids, Stay in the Workforce Longer

Today’s workforce features a changing demographic of aging employees. Between 2006 and 2016, the number of workers in the mature age group is expected to grow by 80 percent, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Many people are staying in the workforce longer due to tough economic times, in turn requiring hearing healthcare professionals to help keep those people as successful and productive as possible.

So what does this mean for the general public? It means people need to take charge of their health, including their hearing, so they can age productively and continue being successful at their jobs. Boomers should get their hearing checked routinely, and address any hearing loss as soon as possible.

According to the Better Hearing Institute, more than 34 million Americans suffer from hearing loss (about 11 percent of the U.S. population), and 60 percent of them are below retirement age. The vast majority of people with hearing loss can most likely benefit from hearing aids. Employers must also recognize the changing demographics of the workforce and make efforts to help maintain their valued employees, by encouraging healthy hearing habits.

If you have any questions regarding hearing loss, please contact our office at 904-399-0350.

How Can Bluetooth Technology Help You With Your Hearing Aids?

Did you know that some of the latest Bluetooth technology can be used with hearing aids? Learn how from one of our audiologists, Dr. Jacqueline Olson, who was featured recently in a live segment on First Coast Living in Jacksonville, Fla.

What Makes Us Different from Other Hearing Aid Companies?

Find out more from one of our audiologists, Dr. Jacqueline Olson, who was featured recently in a live segment on First Coast Living in Jacksonville, Fla.

 

How to Measure Your Potential for Hearing Loss this Fourth of July

Noise is one of the most common occupational illnesses in the United States, and one of the most common causes of hearing loss. According to the Better Hearing Institute, 30 million Americans are exposed to dangerous noise levels each day, and 10 million people have already suffered irreversible hearing damage from noise. Because the damage often takes place gradually, the effects of noise on hearing are often underestimated.

This Fourth of July, Jacksonville Hearing and Balance Institute is urging Americans to protect their hearing by enjoying fireworks from a comfortable distance and wearing disposable earplugs, made of foam or silicone, which are usually available at local pharmacies.

(Click to Enlarge Image) 

Excessive noise damages the delicate hair cells in the inner ear. Working in noisy occupations or participating in loud recreational activities can involve dangerous levels of noise. Beware of activities such as music concerts, shooting a gun, sporting events, motorcycles and fire crackers. Firefighters, police officers, factory workers, construction workers, musicians and military personnel are particularly at risk for hearing loss due to exposure to noise.

If you suspect that you or a loved one may be experiencing noise-induced hearing loss, contact our office at 904-399-0350 to schedule your evaluation.

 

 

 

 

 

National Men’s Health Month

The Better Hearing Institute (BHI) is promoting National Men’s Health Month by raising awareness of the link between hearing loss and a man’s overall wellbeing.

Jacksonville Hearing and Balance Institute along with the BHI is urging men across America to get their hearing checked. According to the BHI, more than half of the 34 million people with hearing loss in the United States are male.

Familes are encouraged to support the men in their lives by becoming more aware of preventable health problems. The purpose of Men’s Health Month is to promote early detection and treatment of disease or injury among men and boys. Resources are available at Jacksonville Hearing and Balance Institute to test for hearing loss and implement comprehensive treatment plans.

The whole month of June is National Men’s Health Month, so encourage the men in your life to consider how their hearing health is linked to other aspects of their lives. Hearing aids can benefit the majority of men with hearing loss, and improve the quality of their lives and relationships.

Deaf Baseball Player Aims for the Major Leagues

A high-school senior from New Jersey has grabbed the attention of baseball scouts across the nation. As one of the top pitchers in his region, Austin Solecitto is headed to the state playoffs with his team.

But it’s not only his skill on the field that has caught everyone’s attention. The 18-year-old pitcher was diagnosed with profound hearing loss at the age of two. He wears a cochlear implant throughout the day, but when he’s pitching on the mound, he often disables the device. Ironically, Austin explains that the ability to disable his cochlear implant while pitching has proven to be an advantage, since he is able to focus on his pitching and not the other team or parents.

A cochlear implant is a surgically implanted electronic device that provides a sense of sound to a person who is profoundly deaf or severely hard of hearing. Cochlear implants have been an area of major advancement in the arena of hearing rehabilitation over the last several decades. Jacksonville Hearing & Balance Institute (JHBI) is proud to offer patients an experienced, comprehensive cochlear implant team, consisting of neurotologists, audiologists with special board certification in cochlear implant assessment and rehabilitation, physician’s assistants, and allied health professionals within the Jacksonville community. Through their expertise and dedication, they are helping to restore the gift of hearing to patients both locally and internationally. And some of these patients, like Solecitto, might even set their sights on the major leagues.

Ringing in the Ears

We’ve all had it at one time or another–that sound of ringing in your ears—that can range from subtle to shattering.  Tinnitus (TIN-ih-tuss) is the medical term for the perception of sound in one or both ears when there is actually no external sound present.  It can come and go or be constant, and causes vary.

Common causes of tinnitus:

  • Hearing loss.   Whether age-related or caused by exposure to loud sound, hearing loss can cause tinnitus.  Tinnitus caused by short-term exposure, such as attending a loud concert, usually goes away.
  • Earwax blockage. When too much earwax builds up, it can cause hearing loss or irritation of the eardrum, which can lead to tinnitus.
  • Ear bone changes. Stiffening of the bones in your middle ear may affect your hearing and cause tinnitus. This condition tends to run in families.

Less common causes include:

  • Meniere’s disease, an inner ear disorder
  • Stress and depression are often associated with tinnitus and seem to aggravate it.
  • TMJ disorders are problems with the temperomandibular joint –where your lower jawbone meets your skull.
  • Ear or sinus infections, but once the infection is healed the tinnitus goes away.
  • Head or neck injuries
  • Acoustic neuroma, a noncancerous tumor in your brain

Some medications will trigger tinnitus as a side effect.  Fortunately, it usually disappears when you stop using these drugs.

  • Antibiotics, including chloramphenicol, erythromycin, gentamicin, vancomycin and bleomycin
  • Cancer medications, including mechlorethamine and vincristine
  • Diuretics (water pills)
  • Quinine and Chloroquine, taken for malaria
  • Aspirin in very high doses (12 or more a day)