Hearing Therapy is a service which can provide information, counselling and practical assistance for people experiencing issues with hearing loss, central processing disorders (or Hidden Hearing Loss), tinnitus and hyperacusis.
What specific services are offered in Hearing Therapy?
We can offer sessions in communication tactics online, in London, and the surrounding areas for patients, their families and significant others.
Lip-reading sessions are available on an individual basis, and we can provide information about local lip-reading groups.
We can provide Auditory Training sessions for developing listening ability for people with hearing losses.
Whilst sophisticated hearing devices send high-quality signals to the ear, the brain still needs to interpret these signals and translate them into recognisable words, so often a combination of a hearing device with some Auditory Training will achieve the best results.
As an illustration, many people with normal hearing do struggle to follow the dialogue when watching a typical Hollywood action movie – especially when the speech is delivered in an unfamiliar accent set against a background of loud film music and noisy special effects, for example. This isn’t usually a hearing problem; this is often a listening and interpretation issue.
Auditory Therapy helps people improve their ability to understand speech, from very quiet voices, the distractions of loud background noise or when trying to follow rapid conversations. The training course consists of 20 sessions each lasting 20 – 30 minutes and can be run on most home computers. For best results, we suggest that this is carried out over 20 days. It is highly interactive and, at the end of the sessions, the results can be analysed by an Audiologist to see where further improvements can be made. We have seen patients make an improvement in their listening ability following the course.
We offer assertiveness sessions to enhance patient confidence in explaining their communication needs and hearing problems to others.
We can provide sessions regarding assistive listening devices that can run on most Phones and Computers.
Access to work, and Disability student Allowance information and reports can be provided to support access to equipment within the workplace or University.
We can offer telephone training sessions to develop confidence and correct positioning technique for use with the telephone.
Counselling and Relaxation:
We offer Tinnitus Retraining Therapy and counselling for patients referred from the Audiology-led Tinnitus Clinic.
We provide counselling to patients who have experienced sudden losses, or those having difficulty coping with a hearing loss.
We offer relaxation sessions for people experiencing problems with tinnitus and hearing loss, to reduce stress and enhance management techniques.
We provide sessions for people needing extra time to develop effective management techniques for using hearing aids.
We provide information and practical help sessions for people who have dexterity, dual sensory loss or memory problems requiring additional help to adapt to their hearing aids using alternative techniques.
We work with the Local Authority Disabilities team to provide rehabilitation packages including hearing aid management and adaptation, communication strategies and equipment assessments for patients with Learning Disabilities and hearing loss.
Central Processing Disorders:
We are able to offer counselling, relaxation and communication advice sessions to people with central processing issues which affect their ability to hear sound, especially in the presence of background noise, when their hearing is regarded as being within normal limits.
We can provide sessions of Auditory Training to assist with listening in quiet and in the presence of background noise.
Central Auditory Processing Disorder (CAPD) or Auditory Processing Disorder (APD) occurs when the brain cannot process or understand correctly the sounds the ears hear, even though the ears might be functioning properly. Auditory processing is the system running from the ear to the brain and is to be distinguished from hearing, language, and thinking.
Distorted hearing profiles can also be detrimental to how a child functions in their environment. For example, something like continued ear infections during critical periods of neuronal network formation may disrupt normal development. Without being able to hear properly, as certain frequencies may be ‘blocked’ due to the infection, they are unable to process and integrate that information. As a result, language, both written and spoken, may be delayed, the sense of balance disrupted or worse. With each ear infection crucial frequencies of sound are not integrated within the critical time frame of development.
Auditory processing difficulties impact on an individual’s ability to analyse and make sense of information taken in through the ears. This is different from problems involving hearing, such as deafness or being hard of hearing. Difficulties with auditory processing do not affect what is heard by the ear, but do affect how this information is interpreted and processed by the brain.
An auditory processing difficulty will directly impact on speech and language and will affect other areas of learning, especially reading and spelling. Instructions often rely on the spoken word and a person with an auditory processing difficulty may find it very hard to understand the learning points or specific instructions.
Common areas of auditory processing difficulties are:
The importance of having a comprehensive and integrated approach to treating hearing loss, tinnitus and other hearing disorders is receiving more attention in recent years and across the entire field of hearing healthcare. This includes support for cognitive, emotional, and mental wellbeing.
People who experience audiological and hearing issues such as tinnitus or hyperacusis are at a higher risk of accelerated health problems like depression, anxiety, fatigue, social withdrawal and issues with recalling and remembering information.
However the hearing health industry focuses on hearing and hearing loss as an entity. It is standard practice to look at reduced hearing ability on an audiogram as the primary ‘problem’ to be solved.
The same can be said for tinnitus management and in the case of balance disorders where specialists mainly concentrate on assessing and treating basic reflexive functions. There is rudimentary consideration of cognitive function, psychological and perception issues.
Our Audiologists steer away from an ‘impairment focused’ model of care in our delivery of hearing therapy. From a hearing health point of view, the purpose of a conventional model is to improve hearing with hearing aid technology.
There is little consideration for a person’s:
In other words, it does not consider the whole person.
At Clearly Hearing; these ‘whole person’ considerations are key to all decisions made regarding treatment and management of hearing loss, tinnitus and audiological disorders. We go beyond the ear and provision of hearing aid technology and place a strong emphasis on supporting these whole person considerations by integrating the following into care and as required:
Clinic Address: 3 Tintagel Gardens, East Dulwich, London, SE22 8HS & Clinic Address: 23 Hunsdon Rd, New Cross, London, SE14 5RD & Clinic Address: 111-119, Until, Ground & Lower, Charing Cross Rd, London WC2H 0DU & Clinic Address: The Uplifting Clinic, Castleland Street, Barry, Vale of Glamorgan, CF63 4LL
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