Kelly Briley AuD
I have been caring for the hearing impaired population of Dallas area for over a decade specializing exclusively in hearing aids and amplification.
As a professional, it is fascinating to see the growth and improvements that are constantly occurring in the field of audiology. Hearing aids are now highly sophisticated devices that require advanced training and education to make certain that the user obtains the optimum result and benefit.
There are many types of hearing professionals that dispense hearing aids including Audiologists, hearing instrument dispensers, and audioprothologists. Of these, Audiologists are unique, in that they are the only providers that are required to obtain college degrees, making them specialists assessment, identification, and treatment of all aspects of Audiology. My desire to provide the absolute highest level or care possible, prompted me to obtain my doctorate degree, so that I could instill within my patients the highest level of integrity, trust and care.
Throughout my extensive training, I have gained a wealth of information to make certain that every patient feels valued, and has trust and confidence in my abilities in the treatment of their hearing loss.
- Bachelors of Arts in Speech Language Pathology and Audiology from University of North Texas
- Masters of Science in Audiology from University of North Texas
- Doctorate of Audiology from Arizona School of Health Sciences
What is a Hearing Aid?
A hearing aid is simply a small sound amplifier that can be worn by the user. It is made up of a microphone, an amplifier and a speaker. The sound travels to the microphone which is then amplified and at the same time “equalized”, like the equalizer on your stereo, so that the frequencies which are not as responsive in the hearing of the user can be amplified more than others. That signal is then sent to a small speaker which is placed close to the eardrum.
How Hearing Aids Help
Watch the following video to see an interview with Dr. Fred about how hearing aids help patients.
Hearing aids can be mounted behind the ear, with the speaker in the unit and a tube connected to a small plug which goes into the ear canal, or can be in a smaller unit, which is placed directly into the ear canal. Other types, like the BAHA, are mounted directly to the bone behind the ear and transmit the sound through the bone to the hearing mechanism.
To learn more about the BAHA procedure please click on this link which includes an interview with Dr. Bob Owens about the surgery and what can be expected.
How do you know what frequencies I’m missing?
When you come for a hearing aid evaluation, you will be given an audiogram, a simple and painless test to check how your hearing is doing. The human hearing mechanism can hear sounds in a large range of frequencies, from very low like a bass guitar, to very high like the noise of hissing steam. Most people with hearing loss first lose the higher frequencies, which also include the range of speech, making it hard to understand what people are saying. Our audiologists are highly trained professionals who work closely with the Otologist (medical ear specialist) to advise him as to the extent of your hearing loss. You will be placed in a soundproof booth, given headphones and made comfortable and then the audiologist will play tones into the headphones at various frequencies and volumes. This will give the doctor a graph which will help him or her advise you as to what type of hearing aid will work best for you.
Will I be able to take my new hearing aids home with me?
No, first the audiologist will do an earmold, which will give them a mold of the inside and outside of your ear canal, so that the hearing aid housing, made of plastic, can be made at the factory, and the electronics are placed inside. The making of the mold is a painless process, your ear will be cleaned by either the doctor or the audiologist and then a warm, soft foam is injected into your ear, let cool for a few moments and pulled out. Most people actually like the warm feeling of this.
So, do you just mail them to me then?
No, once we receive the aid or aids back from the factory, you will come in for a fitting with the audiologist. The aid will be checked to make sure there is a good, tight and comfortable fit, and then another hearing test will be done to check the improvement in your hearing. You won’t be sent home with the aid until both you and the audiologist are comfortable with the results.
Then once I walk out, I will be hearing normally?
Having a hearing aid is just like any other useful tool, it will take you a little time to get used to the way it works. You won’t be hearing exactly like you did before, but with practice and patience and help from the audiologist, you will soon be able to communicate better or hear sounds that you thought were gone forever.
"Just wanted to tell you how much I have enjoyed my BAHA unit. I was unable to hear my children or grandchildren talk to me across the room. With my unit on, my grandson can talk to me so easily without me say 'what'. I can converse with my friends without pretending to hear what they say! The BAHA has been a blessing for me!"
The Physicians of Owens Ear Center work closely with Audiologists and Otologic Technicians to accurately assess each patient's hearing condition. We are happy to help you with your hearing aid questions serving the Dallas Fort Worth TX Area.
4104 Junius Street
Dallas, Texas 75246
Toll Free: 800-OwensEar
|Ft Worth Office
1001 12 Ave., Suite 130
Ft Worth, TX 76104
Toll Free: 800-OwensEar
Baylor Medical Center Plano
4708 Alliance Blvd
Pavilion 1, Suite 860
Plano, TX 75093
Toll Free: 800-OwensEar