Samantha Foster, co-owner and General Manager of Hear Again says that in helping adults of all ages with their hearing, it is usually family members who first notice hearing loss in a loved one and urge them to have their hearing checked. “Clients often come to Hear Again saying ‘I’m fine, everyone just mumbles in my family’,” says Samantha “and then are amazed at the difference we can make”.
Technological advances mean it is now possible to have rechargeable hearing aids. “You charge the hearing aids up overnight, rather than changing batteries, which can be small and fiddly,” Samantha says. “Rechargeable aids are slightly pricier than the disposable battery hearing aids, but if dexterity or poor eyesight make coping with the traditional batteries difficult, then the rechargeable hearing aids are a real advantage.”
Rechargeable hearing aids bring the confidence that the aids will last a whole day and won’t leave you high and dry in a meeting. The hearing aids are simply charged overnight like a phone and then provide over 24 hours of continuous use. “We really recommend patients opt for the rechargeable hearing aids if they can afford the little extra cost,” Samantha says.
“Technology that connects hearing aids to an iPhone has been around for a while now, but it’s still not widely known,” she adds. “This type of hearing aid allows you to use your cellphone like a remote control; you can send the phone conversation audio straight to your hearing aid and you can always hear your phone ring if you are within 10 metres. The same technology can also be used to send the sound from your TV straight to the hearing aids, even if the volume is turned down or off for others in the family.”
If you suspect your hearing is impaired, the team offers free hearing screening for over-18s. They provide full diagnostic testing, or you can bring in the results of a hearing test you have had within the last six months and the Hear Again team can offer a second opinion. If hearing aids are indicated, a full needs assessment examines every aspect of your life and what you need your instruments to do. Your existing aids can be cleaned and checked, and ear wax removal is available for teens and up.
If hearing damage has occurred in your workplace or from military service, Hear Again can assess whether you are eligible to make an ACC or Veterans’ Affairs claim and help with that process. “Most New Zealanders are eligible for a government subsidy of $1022.22 for a pair of hearing aids and we can help you gain this,” Samantha says.
Hear Again has ensured it is easily accessible, with opening hours Monday to Saturday 9am to 5pm. Located at The Hub in Hornby, patients come from all around Canterbury because they don’t have to travel to the central city and there is parking right at the door.