What You Need to Know

Audiology Dr. Courtney PalmiereWith so many audiology offices, it is important to understand the differences between an audiologist and a hearing instrument specialist to make the most educated decisions on your hearing health.

The biggest difference is their scope of practice. Audiologists are trained to work with all populations to evaluate, diagnose, treat, and manage hearing loss, balance, and tinnitus. They are considered health professionals that understand the science behind hearing loss and other audiological disorders as well as the impact hearing loss has on a patient’s life, brain, and physical health.

Hearing Instrument Specialists are trained to test hearing, to recommend and fit hearing aids, and to know and recognize when to refer patients to other hearing healthcare professionals.

Audiologists spend 6-8 years studying their profession that includes a four-year undergraduate degree and a four-year doctorate degree. During their training, students study the diagnosis and treatment of hearing loss and balance disorders, anatomy and physiology, communication development, genetics, ethics, and physics.

The Doctoral program also places a large emphasis on how to counsel patients on their hearing loss. Doctor of Audiology students spend significant time in a variety of clinical settings working full-time in Audiology their final year of training.

It is important to choose the right hearing provider so that you can ensure the best care possible. No matter how expensive and advanced hearing aids are, it is up to the provider to make sure they work efficiently with the appropriate fit for your specific hearing loss.

For more information, you can reach Dr. Courtney Palmiere via email at courtney@audiologyofcharlotte.com.