People don’t fit into boxes very well. I know this both as an audiologist and as a person who has received services from audiologists. If you take a moment to think about your own experience of audiology services, maybe you can relate to this. Maybe you feel as though you have been placed into a box… and not just a hearing test booth.
Communication and language play a vital role in our lives and identities. It is through accessible language and effective communication that we relate to others, share our thoughts with the world, and understand meaning. When a person does not have full access to these, their quality of life suffers. Communication and language touch nearly every aspect of daily living: telling your children that you love them, texting your friend when you’re going to be late for coffee, having a lightbulb moment when you understand a new concept for the first time, and many more examples. Communication is not just about well-programmed hearing devices or access to sounds, and you are more than just a pair of ears.
Your communication is an expression of who you are. You deserve access to a professional who understands this and will accompany you along the way to your goals. That is why I created Audiology Outside the Box.
Audiology Outside the Box is not your typical audiology practice. I don’t focus on diagnoses or tell you that something is wrong with your ears. I listen as you tell me about your concerns and use my expertise as an audiologist to support your communication needs – whatever they might be. I provide audiology services that do not always happen during traditional appointments. What are those services, exactly? These are just a few examples:
- Supporting a family in understanding the communication needs of a newly identified deaf or hard of hearing child
- Teaching an adult who uses hearing aids how to understand their hearing test results and explain their hearing to family and friends
- Working with a deaf or hard of hearing student on self-advocacy skills for success in transition to the next level of education
- Facilitating a coping strategies group for people who have progressive hearing loss or are late-deafened
- Answering questions about hearing devices in the context of broader communication goals for a deaf or hard of hearing person who communicates in American Sign Language (ASL)
- Teaching skills and strategies to family members of deaf and hard of hearing people for more effective communication at home
- And many others! See this page for a complete list of services.
Additionally, I offer a variety of resources – many of which are available free of charge to anyone who finds them helpful. Going forward, I will be using this blog to write about communication, hearing, and related topics that people who see audiologists would like to understand better. Maybe you are wondering: if a baby does not pass the newborn hearing screening, does that mean the baby is deaf? What exactly is the difference between an audiologist and a speech-language pathologist? How well do people who use hearing devices hear, anyway? If you have an idea for a blog post or a general audiology-related question that you would like to see me answer, feel free to contact me here.
I look forward to meeting you and supporting you on your journey. No matter who you are or how you communicate, you will be treated with kindness and respect. In this place, creative thinking about communication, hearing, and all things audiology is welcome and encouraged. It’s time to take audiology outside of the box.
[Image description: the image at the top of this page is a hand with light skin tone holding up a brown paper box with paints of different colors (purple, yellow, red, green, orange) splashing out and upward from the box. The background is a blue sky.]