Speech Therapy & Audiology
Speech Pathologists work with individuals of all ages who may have a variety of speech, hearing, voice, fluency, swallowing, language, or cognitive disorders (difficulty with thinking, reasoning, judgement, and memory).
Audiologists work with individuals of all ages who have issues related to hearing or balance.
Speech-language pathologists work with individuals of all ages who may have a variety of speech, voice, fluency, swallowing, language, or cognitive disorders (difficulty with thinking, reasoning, judgement, and memory).
These problems can be caused by stroke, brain injury, development delay, cleft palate, hearing loss, emotional problems, autism, cerebral palsy, mental retardation, and genetic syndromes. Therapy is provided for toddlers through adults.
Speech therapy includes the evaluation and treatment of:
- Delayed speech
- Articulation (sound) disorder
- Fluency (stuttering)
- Voice disorders
Other services include:
- Cognitive Therapy
- Augmentative Communication
- Modified Barium Swallows
- Dysphagia or Swallowing Therapy
Audiologists are the primary health-care professionals who evaluate, diagnose, treat, and manage hearing loss and balance disorders in adults and children.
- Hearing Evaluations (infants through adults)
- Hearing Aid Assessment (infants through adults)
- Hearing Aid Sales and Repairs (infants through adults)
- Electronystagmography (ENG) / Videonystagmography (VNG) (test for dizziness)
- Custom Earplugs and Swimplugs
- Tinnitus Assessment and Counseling
- Auditory Processing Disorder Screenings
- ABR (Auditory Brainstem Evoked Response)
approximate number of Americans with hearing loss
Hearing Aid Assessment
Columbus Regional Health has three licensed and certified Audiologists in two convenient locations that provide diagnostic services for Columbus and surrounding communities.
Available services include comprehensive hearing tests for all ages, balance assessments and tinnitus evaluations. Our services, knowledge, and expertise do not end when testing has been completed. If you are a hearing aid candidate, we can provide any continuing care you may need.
Purchasing hearing aids can be an overwhelming experience. That is why we are here to answer all your questions and discuss your individual listening needs. We are then able to guide you through selecting the most appropriate technology for your lifestyle at a competitive price.
Hearing aids alone may not be able overcome every difficult listening situation. In these instances there are many accessories available to address specific needs, such as a Bluetooth compatible streamer for cell phone and TV use.
Everyone is unique. Everyone’s hearing is different. Each person’s hearing needs vary. That is why we will treat you as the individual you are. Our goal is to enable each person to enjoy the lovely sounds of life.
If you already have hearing aids, and are not satisfied with their performance, please give us a call and schedule a hearing aid check appointment. We can evaluate the function of your current hearing aids and discuss new technology options for your specific needs.
Speech Delay, Hearing Loss, or Both?
When should you be concerned about your child’s language development and hearing? Many of us search for a justification of a child’s behavior: “boys talk later” or they have “selective listening”. It makes it difficult to know when to be concerned. Please let the milestones listed below guide you:
By 3 months of age your baby should be cooing.
At 6 months infants should have speech-like babbling- pa, ma, and ba, and should also giggle and laugh.
Around one year your child should start using longer strings of babble, wave bye-bye, reach to be picked up, point to objects and shake his/her head no. A few words will also emerge, for example: dada, mama, uh-oh or hi.
By 2-3 years of age your toddler should discuss things not in the room, talk during pretend play, ask ‘why?’, put 3 words together and be easily understood by family.
All babies are screened at birth for hearing loss. If they pass, it does not mean they cannot develop hearing loss later in childhood. You should be concerned if your infant is not startling to loud sounds or is not quiet or smile when spoken to.
By 6 months the infant should be able to turn his/her head to localize to sounds and pay attention to music or toys that make noise.
At 7-9 months children should respond to his/her name and bounce to music.
By 1-2 years of age toddlers should understand simple questions like “Who’s that?”, “Where’s your ball?” and be able to identify body parts and pictures in books.
Besides permanent hearing loss, another factor that can affect hearing and speech are ear infections. Having an ear infection is similar to listening through a mild to moderate hearing loss in which not all sounds of speech or an environment can be heard. It is not uncommon for children with chronic ear infections to have some language delay; however once the infections are treated, your child should catch up. This can also be assisted by the help of a speech language pathologist.
You know your child best; if you have any concerns about your child meeting these milestones please contact your pediatrician and ask for a referral for a hearing and/or speech evaluation.
Columbus Regional Health has highly-qualified and state licensed audiologists and speech language pathologists on staff who specialize in evaluation and treatment of all ages. If you have any questions please call Columbus Regional Health at 812-376-5373 option 2 or 1-800-841-4938 ext. 5373 option 2.
Signs of Hearing Loss
- I can hear people talking, but I can't understand what they are saying.
- I have difficulty on the phone.
- I have difficulty understanding women and children.
- I find myself turning up the television or radio.
- People sound like they are mumbling.
- It is difficult to follow a conversation when two or more people are speaking.
- I have difficulty understanding what others say in background noise.
If any of these sound familiar, contact the Audiology Department at Columbus Regional Health.
Unilateral hearing loss
Individuals with a unilateral hearing loss may complain of difficulty with localization of sound as well as difficulty understanding speech, especially in background noise. There are advanced digital options available today, and the audiologists at Columbus Regional Health can help you find an option that fits your lifestyle and budget.
Benefits of Amplification and Seniors
Benefits from amplification among seniors goes beyond improved hearing to include greater independence, security, better relationships with their family and friends, improved mental and physical health and feeling better about themselves.
The Audiology Department provides effective and affordable hearing aids to match your lifestyle and budget let us help you get back to the life style you want.
Shooting and permanent hearing loss
Shooting sports and permanent hearing loss go hand in hand, whether using a rifle or pistol, cartridge or shell, the firearm is pumping more than 100 decibels down the ear canal each time the trigger is pulled.
Those at risk for ear trauma and permanent hearing loss include not only the shooter but spotters, judges, officials, and spectators (especially the young ones). Damage to hearing that occurs during the early years of life may have a profound, life-long effect on the individual.
That is why everyone should wear some kind of hearing protection. We can easily and inexpensively provide you with custom made ear molds. Numerous styles can include electronic noise cancellation with on/off switching.
Signs that a child may have a hearing loss
- Does your child have delayed speech?
- Is your child performing poorly in school or acting out?
- Has your child been diagnosed with autism, learning disability, ADHD?
- Do you have a concern about how your child responds to sound?
If the answer to any of these questions is "yes", then it is time to evaluate your child's hearing.
Unilateral hearing loss in children
Children with unilateral hearing loss can have a 10% more likelihood of failing a grade than their normal hearing peers. They have an increased listening effort resulting in fatigue and an inability to multitask.
Speech is audible for children with unilateral hearing loss, but it is not always understandable depending on the competing noise in the room. These difficulties can lead to a child being labeled inattentive, disinterested or aloof and result in behavioral or social problems.
We provide specialized care for children with unilateral hearing loss which includes amplification, FM technology, and audiological monitoring.
Even a mild or fluctuating hearing loss can cause learning problems in children
A child with a mild hearing loss can be expected to miss 25-40% of the speech signal, resulting in a significant speech/language delays, as well as a negative psychological and social/emotional impact and difficulty in school.
The Audiologists at Columbus Regional Health can evaluate your child and make appropriate referrals depending on the results of the testing, such as amplification and FM technology.
Tinnitus is the perception of sound within the head that is generally described as a continuous or intermittent ringing, buzzing, humming, etc. Tinnitus is often accompanied by hearing loss and may be the result of the natural maturation/aging of the ear, an ototoxic medication, a tumor or lesion along the auditory nerve, ear infections, impacted wax or noise exposure.
If you are experiencing tinnitus, a consultation with a physician should include a referral for a hearing evaluation. At Columbus Regional Health's Audiology Department we offer hearing evaluations and tinnitus assessments to help better understand your individual situation and decrease the effects tinnitus has on your quality of life.
Purchasing Hearing Aids on the Internet
Purchasing hearing aids on the Internet can lead to feedback, ear discomfort, improper programming and ultimately device failure and disuse.
The process of amplification is truly an individualized process, and no two ears or people are alike. An Internet purchase of hearing aids does not take into consideration the subtle changes of the ear nor your lifestyle and varied listening environments.
We can provide a risk-free hearing aid trial period that allows for custom programming, guaranteed custom fit and expert service.
Hearing Preservation and Conservation
Hearing loss due to noise exposure has become a common issue, even in children. Exposure to loud sounds such as gunfire, loud concerts or sounds from MP3 players, factory noise, farm equipment and power tools has claimed the hearing of countless individuals.
It is important to protect your hearing. Suggestions include turning down your headphones (if others can hear your music it is too loud), wearing high definition earplugs to concerts, disposable or custom earplugs or reusable earmuffs when operating or around loud equipment or gunfire. Our Audiology Department is ready to help you preserve your hearing.
Related CRH Blog Posts
May 12, 2016
When Hearing Aids Are Not Enough
Over the last 10 years hearing aid technology has greatly advanced in reference to providing better and more comfortable speech understanding in quiet environments, at a distance, and in the presence of background noise.Full story
Mar 14, 2016
New Advances Improve Hearing Aids
Microchips. Digital processing. Computerized analysis. Those aren’t the features of the newest smartphone — they’re the technologies available in modern hearing aids.Full story
Feb 4, 2016
Ask the Professional: My Ears Are Ringing!
Approximately 50 million people in the United States perceive a ringing, buzzing, hissing, crickets or roaring sound in their ears or head. This sound is called Tinnitus.Full story