Anyone looking for a rewarding career in the healthcare field has many interesting choices at their disposal. One of the lesser-known possibilities, which is certainly worth consideration, is to become an audiologist. This article takes a closer look at this intriguing and appealing option.
Audiologists use a variety of techniques to assist patients with hearing difficulties. They use specialized equipment to test a patient's hearing and diagnose any hearing disorders. They may also provide treatment for any disorders they diagnose. Audiologists help people who have balance problems as well. For example, they can diagnose and treat balance disorders such as vertigo.
Another important job function is fitting patients for hearing aids. In addition, they often counsel patients with hearing loss on methods to compensate for the loss, such as offering them advice on lip reading or learning sign language. In some instances, they provide clinical services such as removing ear wax.
Audiologists generally need to complete a graduate course in the subject from an accredited school. A typical program takes 4 years to complete. The subjects covered will usually include genetics, anatomy, ethics and pharmacology, among others. In addition to the academic instruction, audiology students will spend time in a clinical setting. For example, the audiology program at the University of Washington provides 3 years of academic courses. During the last year of the program, students are assigned to a clinical setting, such as a medical school, and work under the supervision of experienced audiologists.
Licensing and Certification
All states require that you obtain a license in order to practice as a audiologist. The specific requirements vary from state to state, although having an advanced degree in audiology is a basic requirement in most states, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Certification in audiology is offered by prominent trade associations, such as the American Speech-Language Hearing Association and the American Board of Audiology. Some states may require that you have this type of certification in order to receive a license, while other might not. Even if your state does not have this requirement, however, some employers may favor job applicants who have this particular credential.
The field of audiology offers excellent rewards to those who are willing to devote several years of their lives to gaining the knowledge and experience to succeed. Although the time and effort involved in the process is considerable, you will be compensated with a career that provides valuable and needed services to others. To learn more about audiology, make an appointment with an audiologist such as Mark Montgomery MD FACS.