Hearing Associates has information to help patients relieve the pressure of paying for their hearing aids.  We are a contracted provider with many insurance companies; you can view and download the list here.

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We also have partnered with Wells Fargo, who provides a healthcare credit card.  This card can be used to help you finance your medical treatment and procedures. 


This is similar to a line of credit on a normal credit card but is exclusively for healthcare expenses.

After filling out an application and providing some information about your healthcare expense, you will receive notice of acceptance. There are several options available for financing, including no-interest options that can save you money.

Applications can be made online or by filling out a paper application available at our office.  Once approved, your Wells Fargo card allows affordable monthly payments for you or your family members, and can be used again and again.

Visit Wells Fargo to apply. 

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Siemens and Signia Hearing Aids

For more than 100 years, Siemens has been a trusted hearing aid manufacturer. Now owned by Sivantos, Siemens remains committed to innovative hearing aid technology through a complete product line to meet every need and preference. We offer a wide selection from many different styles and performance features: attractive RIC hearing aids, versatile hearing instruments, discreet ITE devices and swift fit click CiCs. 

Features and Accessories available: 

  • HD Music - The HD Music program delivers a superb listening experience.  Three settings; "Recorded Music," "Live Music," and "Musician," to deliver a fuller, richer sound in any musical situation. 
  • SpeechMaster - Highlights speech in every listening situation.  Primax Star deploys a harmonious range of sophisticated technologies to ensure effortless hearing in a wide variety of listening environments. 
  • easyTek App - lets wearers change programs, adjust the volume or stream audio easily and conveniently.
  • myControl App - In addition to providing outstanding audiological performance, the app allows wearers to change programs and adjust the volume, as well as, stream music and phone calls directly to Primax hearing aids. Uses iPhone motion sensors.
  • myHearing App - Lets wearers easily adjust volume, programs, Spatial Configurator, SoundBalance control, tinnitus therapy. 

In addition to the well-respected Siemens brand name, Sivantos also manufactures Signia hearing aids. They’re built on an innovative platform called Primax, which features forward-thinking technologies like tinnitus management, direct streaming, motion sensor technology and high-definition binaural audio processing. 

The Sivantos family of products includes:

Pure 13 BT P darkgranite 002Pure 13 BT Primax –  Bluetooth, made for iPhone hearing aid, with high definition binaural hearing. Enables best hearing experience for wearers in motion.


cellionCellion –  Lithium-ion inductive charging hearing aid.  Rechargeable and offers 24 hours of outstanding hearing with unlimited streaming,  connectivity, and Telecoil.


Ace binax Beige 200px Ace –  Enjoy extraordinary hearing you don’t have to think about. Ace hearing aids are nearly invisible behind-the-ear instruments that are as discreet as they are powerful. 


Pure primax Silver 200pxPure Primax –  These stylish, convenient and easy-to-use hearing aids redefine your listening experience. Their powerful features let you hear effortlessly throughout the day and enjoy every detail. Rechargeable, wireless connectivity, and Telecoil.


 Carat P primax pearl white200pxCarat –  Compatible with a broad range of practical accessories, it combines superb comfort with complete discretion.  Rechargeable,  wireless connectivity, and Telecoil.


 Silk primax pair200Silk –  Nearly invisible in the ear, these CiCs are packed with advanced features. Tinnitus therapy, excellent wearing and acoustic comfort.


 Motion SX primax Granite 200pxMotion –  Featuring advanced technology that accommodates mild to moderately severe hearing loss, the new Motion hearing aids have a wide variety of user options. They’re both hassle-free and guarantee ease of listening.


Insio PB primax brown mod PAIR 200x200Insio –  These in-the-ear hearing aids are custom-manufactured to fit each wearer’s ear exact. The Insio delivers superior lightness of hearing and tailored discretion.


Orion2 P 768x500pxOrion 2 –  Orion 2 hearing aids ensure you don’t miss a single moment. All models provide a discreet listening experience, while their full range of features and options tailor sound to match your personal hearing preferences.


Nitro micon 768x500px 507x330Nitro Micon – These behind-the-ear hearing aids are the ideal solution for people with severe-to-profound hearing loss who want to remain involved. Nitron hearing aids are ultra-powerful, providing amplification, outstanding speech intelligibility, as well as listening enjoyment.


Aquaris Aquaris –  Designed for an active lifestyle, you can always wear your Siemens Aquaris hearing aids. The robust Aquaris is the only truly waterproof, dust-proof and shockproof hearing aid on the market.


 Sirion hearing aidsSirion 2 –  This hearing aid family lets you appreciate the joy of hearing again. Available in a range of models that discreetly and comfortably hide behind your ear, these hearing aids can be customized to fit your personal sound preferences.


The audiologists at Hearing Associates can answer all of your questions about Siemens hearing aids. Schedule an appointment at our office in Mason City, or our other locations in northern Iowa.


Balance Testing Using Videonystagmography (VNG)

What is Videonystagmography (VNG) Testing?

VNG testing determines if a vestibular (inner ear) disease is the source of your dizziness or balance problems. This series of tests evaluates your ability to follow objects with your eyes and measures how well the eyes respond to information from the vestibular (inner ear) system.

What do your eyes have to do with your ears?

Neural pathways connect the inner ear balance mechanism to eye muscles. A disorder of the balance mechanism can result in quick eye movements that can only be detected with advanced optics.

An older test, called electronystagmography (ENG), used electrodes to measure the muscle activity around the eye. VNG testing, which uses a special infrared camera to measure eye movements, is much more comfortable for patients and yields more accurate results. VNG is also the only test that can distinguish between unilateral (one ear) and bilateral (two ear) vestibular loss, so it’s easy to understand why audiologists have adopted it as the new best-practice technique for evaluating inner ear functions.

VNG testing also addresses ear functionality to determine if a vestibular deficit might be causing your balance or dizziness problems.

What to Expect During VNG Testing

You’ll wear goggles fitted with an infrared camera that will record your eye movements as you look back and forth between designated points, track moving lights, and move your head and body into different positions.

Although you might feel minor discomfort from wearing the goggles, VNG testing is painless and non-invasive. Appointments last about 1 ½ hours, and all insurances cover the testing.

Steps of VNG Testing

The 4 main parts of VNG testing include:

  1. Ocular Mobility: Here, you’ll use your eyes to follow objects that jump from place to place, stand still and move smoothly. As you follow these visual targets, our team will look for inaccuracies or slowness that could indicate a neurological or central nervous condition, or trouble with the pathway between the brain to the vestibular system.
  2. Optokinetic Nystagmus: Your team will ask you to view a large, moving image to see if your eyes properly track such movements. Like the ocular mobility segment, we’ll be examining your ability to follow visual targets.
  3. Positional Nystagmus: Our technician will place your body and head into different positions to ensure that there aren’t inappropriate rapid eye movements as you move. This test examines your inner ear system and the endolymph fluid in your semi-circular ear canals. We’re verifying that otoconia, or small calcium carbonate particles, aren’t disturbing the natural flow of fluid.
  4. Caloric Testing: One at a time, our team will simulate your inner ears with warm, followed by cool, air. We’ll monitor your eye movements to ensure that both of your ears sense and respond to stimulation. This is the portion of the test that can distinguish between unilateral and bilateral vestibular loss.

Based on your VNG test results, your audiologist may recommend hearing aids or other medical treatments to correct your dizziness or balance disorder. Schedule your VNG testing with Hearing Associates by calling 888.760.2032.

What Is An Audiologist?

An Audiologist is a licensed health care professional who diagnoses hearing loss, balance problems and vestibular system conditions of the ear. They are trained to diagnose, prevent and manage these conditions. After a review of your health history and a hearing evaluation, an audiologist will determine if your condition might be medically treatable. If your condition is not medically treatable, they will make recommendations for treatment which might include the use of hearing aids, listening devices, balance therapy and aural rehabilitation.

What Education is Required to Become an Audiologist?

Audiologists need to have either a masters or doctoral degree in audiology from an accredited university. They are regulated by state licensure or registration in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The profession’s requirements are transitioning into requiring a doctorate as the initial degree to practice audiology.
Minimum requirements for the degree include:

  •  A minimum of 75 semester hours of post-baccalaureate study
  • Meeting prescribed competencies
  • Passing a national exam given by Praxis Series of the Educational Testing Service
  • Teaching programs that are equivalent to a minimum of 12 months of full-time, supervised experience.

Audiologists will also earn a certificate from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association or through the American Board of Audiology (ABA). To remain licensed, most states have continuing education and renewal requirements that must be met.

Where do Audiologists Work?

Audiologists will work in a variety of settings:

  • Hospitals and medical centers
  • Schools and universities
  • Clinics and rehabilitation facilities
  • Cochlear implant centers and speech and hearing centers
  • Private audiology practices, otolaryngology (ENT physician) and hearing aid dispensing offices
  • Hearing aid manufacturing facilities

What is a Typical Day for an Audiologist?

In a 40-50 hour work week, Audiologists are involved in the testing, diagnosis and management of hearing loss in patients of all ages. An audiologist can refer their patients to physicians when the history and results of their audiometric evaluation show the possibility of a serious condition. They also dispense hearing aids and listening devices, counsel families through any new diagnosis of hearing loss, and help educate about managing of the patient’s condition. Audiologists help minimize the negative effect of these disorders for their patients, leading to improved outcomes. 


How to Choose an Audiologist

Now that you know what an Audiologist does, learn more about how to choose the right Audiologist for your hearing loss needs.


Our experienced staff is here to listen to your needs and show you the ways that we can improve your hearing and quality of life. Schedule an appointment for complete hearing tests, including balance testing, at our main office in Mason City, or at any of our other locations throughout northern Iowa and Albert Lea, Minnesota. We look forward to serving you.

Leave Us A Review

When you provide us with feedback, it helps us provide you with better service.

Please take a few moments to tell us about your most recent visit to any of our locations. We use your valuable insight to evaluate our practices so we can offer the most comprehensive, patient-focused hearing health care in our community.

Please click the website icon and submit a local review.



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It Was A Very Posititve Experience

I certainly appreciate the compassion and expertise offered by Christine, the fitting audiologist. It was really fun to see what new innovations are out there in the world of hearing amplification. I certainly appreciate your time and patience explaining the different options of new hearing aid advancements. 

I also appreciate the Resound Company and their innovations in pairing my hearing aids with Bluetooth technology so that I can connect with my phone, stethoscope, and other devices wirelessly.  I certainly think these advancements will make my life easier and I appreciate your help in these innovations. 

In a nutshell, it was a very positive experience with both the clinic, Christine, and the new technology that Resound has offered and I certainly look forward to further contact with both of you. - D. Crippin M.D.

Thank You

Thank you for your submission. We appreciate your interest and will be in touch soon.

You can view some of our informational blogs here, or return to our homepage.


Phonak Hearing Aids

At Hearing Associates, we provide a wide range of hearing aid options to our Northern Iowa patients. In addition to Lyric and Oticon devices, we also offer Phonak hearing aids for all levels of hearing loss.  

audeo v

Audéo V – The Audeo V features technology that lets you understand speech from any direction, you can enjoy conversation without being face to face.

Packshot Audeo B R xSReceiver 050 0237 T7resized

Audéo B – Make hearing an effortless experience with these sophisticated instruments. They adapt to each sound automatically, so wearers experience unparalleled hearing performance in any situation. Experience 60% improved speech understanding, including quiet voices and soft sounds. 

Packshot Mini Charger with Audeo B R Lresized

Audéo B-R – As the fastest-charging, longest-lasting rechargeable hearing aid available, the Audéo B-R offers 24 hours of hearing with one, 3-hour charge. The lithium-ion battery lasts through the lifetime of the hearing aids, freeing wearers from the cumbersome task of regularly changing batteries.

sky q

Sky V – Sky V, the current Phonak pediatric hearing aid line, accommodates mild to profound hearing losses. The devices boast colorful styles and incorporate technology specifically designed for infants, children and teens.  

Packshot Naida V SP Hook 050 0245 P8resized

Naída V – Specifically designed for those with severe to profound hearing loss, the “super power” Nadia V allows wearers to understand more, even in challenging listening environments. Pair with Roger wireless microphones for a comprehensive hearing solutions package.

virto q

Virto V – This hearing aid line is custom-made to suit your needs. You select the device size, shell, faceplate, color and technology. We take care of the rest.

Packshot Bolero V M SlimTube 050 0284 Q1

Bolero V – Ideal for active lifestyles, the Bolero Q is equipped with water and dust resistant features.

Packshot Bolero B SP SlimTube 050 0373 P4

Bolero B – What makes Bolero B so special is its unique operating system called AutoSense OS. It senses your surroundings and adjusts your hearing aids every step of the way.  With the rechargeable Bolero B-PR, you can enjoy 24 hours* of hearing with one charge.

Virto B Titanium

Virto B-Titanium– The super-discreet custom hearing aid made from titanium. It adapts simply to every sound environment automatically for excellent hearing performance everywhere.

cros ii

CROS II – The CROS system is ideal for those with single-sided hearing loss. The hearing aids feature Phonak Venture technology, which uses its microphone to transmit sound from your poor ear to the device in your good ear.


Packshot CROS B

CROS B – The smart solution for single-sided deafness. CROS B automatically detects what listening situation you are in and switches to the best possible setting. You’ll forget you’re wearing it. It can zoom in on the voice in front of you for better speech understanding.


For additional information about Phonak hearing aids, click on the icons or contact Hearing Associates in Mason City, Iowa. Contact us to schedule your consultation appointment today. 

Choosing the Right Hearing Aid

Congratulations! You’ve finally decided to take a positive step toward better hearing, and you’re ready for hearing aids.

Now what?

Don’t worry. You’ve already done the hard part - deciding to get a hearing aid. Hearing Associates, P.C. makes buying a hearing aid easy. We’ll answer any questions you may have, including:

Which steps should I take?

You should start with a visit to an audiologist, like Hearing Associates, P.C. When you come to us, we’ll perform a variety of hearing tests. These will tell us the type and severity of your hearing loss, and will help us design the treatment plan that’s right for you.

How do I know which hearing aid is right for me?

There are thousands of different hearing aids on the market. Can you imagine looking at all of them and trying to select the one that’s perfect for your lifestyle, budget, and exact type of hearing loss?

Luckily, you don’t have to. We can determine your type and severity of hearing loss and recommend the hearing aid that will meet your needs.

Why should I see an audiologist? Can’t I just buy my hearing aids online?

You already know that you shouldn’t select your hearing aid entirely on your own. And when you buy online, you do just that. You could spend hundreds of dollars on a device that won’t help you hear the way you want to because it isn’t designed for your needs.

And here’s something else you won’t get online: follow-up care. If you order from a website and your hearing aid needs replacement or repairs, what would you do? Would you track down an address and ship your devices away? How long will you be without them? How are you supposed to hear while you wait?

At Hearing Associates, P.C., you don’t have to worry about any of that. If you need cleaning or repairs, you know you can always bring your hearing aids to us. And most repairs can be done on-site, while you wait. We’ve even put aside special daily walk-in hours for these services (11am –1pm) and offer cleaning and replacement of certain parts at no charge.

If you’re in need of hearing aids, visit Hearing Associates, P.C. in Mason City, Iowa, or one of our other locations throughout northern Iowa or Albert Lea, Minnesota.

Types of Hearing Loss

Hearing loss can be debilitating, and can greatly affect all aspects of your life. If you suspect you may be experiencing hearing loss, we encourage you not to hesitate in seeking treatment.

At Hearing Associates, we’ve been serving patients with hearing loss in Mason City, Northern Iowa, and Southern Minnesota since 1987. We want you to feel well-informed and comfortable on your journey to better hearing.

Unfortunately, there is a lot of misinformation circulating about hearing loss and hearing aids. Arm yourself with the facts so that your initial appointment isn’t overwhelming. Doing some research before your appointment isn’t a bad idea.

Types of Hearing Loss

There are three basic types of hearing loss: conductive, sensorineural and mixed. They are classified by which part of the hearing pathway is affected. Knowing the correct type hearing loss is necessary to develop a treatment plan.

Conductive hearing loss is caused by any condition that interferes or prevents with the transmission of sound through the outer and middle ear to the cochlea. It’s often medically treatable, with hearing aids as another suitable option.

Sensorineural hearing loss occurs when the tiny hair cells located in the cochlea or on the path from the cochlea to the brain are missing or damaged. This type of hearing loss is often caused by illness or infection, exposure to loud sounds, ototoxic medications or aging. Hearing aids are often an effective means of treatment.

Mixed hearing loss is a term used when both conductive and sensorineural hearing losses are present on the same ear.

If you suspect you have hearing loss, schedule your appointment at Hearing Associates. Our main office is in Mason City, but we have other locations throughout northern Iowa, and one in Albert Lea, Minnesota. We look forward to helping you improve your quality of life through better hearing.

Degrees of Hearing Loss

Understanding the degree, or severity, of your hearing loss is vital in determining which treatment options will work for you.

At Hearing Associates, with offices in Albert Lea, Minnesota, Mason City, and throughout northern Iowa, we offer a comprehensive approach to finding a hearing solution to meet your unique needs.

We begin with an interview to learn about your hearing loss and other aspects of your health history. We follow by performing extensive diagnostic testing, including audiometry, which measures the degree of your hearing loss.

For this test, you enter a sound-proof booth, and we test your hearing threshold, the level of sound that is just barely audible in each ear. The volume of sound is measured in decibels (dB), and the frequency (or pitch) is measured in hertz (HZ). These numbers are placed on an audiogram and represent your degree of hearing loss. Results may vary by ear.

Degrees of hearing loss range from mild to profound.

  • Mild hearing loss causes difficulty in hearing people speaking in soft tones, over background noise, or from a distance.
  • Moderate hearing loss makes conversations challenging, even without background noise.
  • Those with moderately severe hearing loss have difficulty taking part in group discussions.
  • With severe hearing loss, normal conversation is no longer possible in any environment.
  • Even with amplification, those with profound hearing loss may not be able to understand speech.

We offer solutions based on your degree of hearing loss, including recommendations for hearing aids, as some are better suited for a particular degree of hearing loss.

For personalized hearing health care in Mason City, Iowa, and Albert Lea, Minnesota, schedule an appointment with Hearing Associates, PC.

Digital Technology

The hearing aid industry has advanced significantly throughout the past few decades, and continues to evolve with digital hearing aids.

At Hearing Associates, we offer patients in Albert Lea, Minnesota, Mason City, Iowa and the surrounding communities with a variety of hearing solutions, including the most up-to-date digital hearing aid technology.

Digital hearing aids are far superior to the yesterday’s analog devices. The large, awkward models, with high-pitched feedback your grandparents used to wear have been replaced with sleek, quiet, discreet digital hearing aids with amazing features and capabilities.

Some of the biggest differences between digital hearing aids and their outdated counterparts include:

Speech Enhancement: digital hearing aids help you hear more of what you want to hear, by recognizing and enhancing speech while reducing background noise.

Feedback Reduction: One of the biggest complaints from hearing aid users was the erratic squeals from analog processing. Because digital hearing aids process sound differently, they may seem “quieter.”

Directional Microphones: Some digital hearing aids are equipped with 2 microphones offering the ability to focus (or direct) one microphone towards the desired sound source while the other decreases some of the background noise.

When you schedule your appointment at Hearing Associates, our audiologists will conduct extensive testing to find the right hearing solution for you. We carry digital hearing aids from the best manufacturers in the industry, and will help you find the right device to meet your individual needs.

For comprehensive hearing healthcare and advanced digital hearing aid technology in Albert Lea, Minnesota, Mason City, and throughout northern Iowa, count on the professionals at Hearing Associates, PC!


Privacy Policy

Thank you for visiting the Hearing Associates, PC website. Hearing Associates, PC is committed to protecting and safeguarding your privacy. We appreciate you placing your trust in Hearing Associates, PC.

Information We Collect and How We Use It

We collect two types of information about website visitors: Personal information (things like your name, address, telephone number, e-mail address, etc.) which you have voluntarily submitted to us, and aggregate information (such as how many visitors log on to our sites, the pages they access, etc.).

In general, you can visit this website without telling us who you are or revealing personal information. You may need to provide some information to participate in certain promotions and surveys, to register with the site, or to receive information. We collect, maintain, and use personal information you have voluntarily submitted to contact you, and to respond to your comments or requests for information. In addition, we may use personal information to provide you the most helpful products and services to meet your needs and respond to your inquiries.

To better meet your needs, we may supplement the information we collect with data obtained from third parties for the same purposes.

Data Sharing and Transfer

Hearing Associates, PC will not trade, sell, or share your personal information without your consent, unless required by law or as disclosed to you when the information is collected, except that information you provide may be used by Hearing Associates, PC or third-party business partners to fulfill a specific request such as to fulfill a product order, to analyze your opinion of Hearing Associates, PC,or to address a question or concern about our services. If you do provide us with your consent, we also may share your information with third parties so that they may send you offers, personalized offers and tips, or ask for your feedback on their programs.


Cookies help us make your visit to our website more enjoyable and meaningful. A cookie is a small text information file that your web browser places on your computer when you visit a website. This helps us to recognize you when you return to our site. We may use such technology to obtain non-personal information from you as an online visitor.

Children's Privacy

We do not intentionally collect any information or market to children under 16.

Links to Other Sites

This website may contain links to other websites. Hearing Associates, PC does not control the privacy practices or the content of such websites. We recommend you carefully read the privacy policies of each site you visit.

Your Acceptance of Our Privacy Practice

By using this website or any other Hearing Associates, PC website or interactive banner ads, you accept our privacy statement and conditions posted on the website. We reserve the right to update, change, modify or remove portions of this policy at any time. Please check back for updates to our Privacy Statement.

Mission Statement

At Hearing Associates, P.C., our goal is to be your guide in your pursuit of better communication. We’ll present options that best suit your lifestyle to help you overcome hearing loss. Our experienced staff is here to listen to your needs and show you the ways that we can improve your hearing and quality of life.

We appreciate the trust that you and your physician have placed in us for your long-term hearing healthcare.


We're Ready for You

From newborns and children, to adults and seniors, our experienced audiologists have the expertise, technology and care to bring you from silence to better hearing.

We offer individual treatment for a wide variety of disorders including hearing loss and tinnitus. Our offices also provide warranties, balance testing for vertigo, regular hearing aid cleanings and adjustments, as well as annual hearing screenings.

Providing excellent customer service and quality hearing aids to our patients since 1987. Hearing Associates, P.C. is your hearing healthcare expert in Mason City, Northern Iowa, and Albert Lea, Minnesota.



Hearing Care That Stands The Test Of Time

Hearing Associates, P.C. was established in 1987 by Audiologist Gary Dockum. Shortly after, Audiologist Stuart Trembath partnered with Gary, unified with the goal to provide residents of northern Iowa and southern Minnesota with exceptional audiology services.  

Originally located in the North Iowa Mercy Health Center West Campus in Mason City, Hearing Associates moved in 1993 to its current location in the Mason City Clinic Building, adjacent to Mercy Hospital, in Mason City, Iowa. 

Hearing Associates added the expertise of Audiologist Dr. Tanya Harper Rowe in 1996 and Audiologist Rachael Dolezal in 2009. We also enjoyed Audiologists Linda True, Abram Vore, Katie Mennenga, Angela Harvey, and Ashley Bahr being a part of our staff in the last decade.  

In 2014, we welcomed Audiologist Marlys Ebaugh and Hearing Instrument Specialist, Kelly Trout. In the summer of 2015, we added two more Audiologists: Dr. Christine Heintskill and Dr. Jeffrey King.

Throughout the years, Hearing Associates has worked closely with the ENT Clinic at The Mason City Clinic serving Mercy North Iowa Hospital, Mason City. This professional cooperation was inspired by three Otolaryngologists; the late Dr. Russell Schurtz, Dr. Louis Garcia, and Dr. Phillip Lee. The staff of Mason City ENT Clinic continue to be an integral part of sharing the care for mutual patients. 

With this working partnership with ENT, Hearing Associates has also been serving several outreach clinics through Mercy Hospitals. These locations include Britt, Cresco, Hampton, Iowa Falls, New Hampton, and Osage. 

In 2003, Hearing Associates also added Mayo Clinic of Albert Lea, MN.  Additionally, Hearing Associates is a long-standing respected cochlear implant referral to the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.

In the winter of 2016, Hearing Associates started monthly classes to help hearing aid wearers and their family members and friends learn more about hearing loss, hearing devices, and hearing preservation. In the spring of 2016, we also expanded to another location, acquiring Cedar Valley Hearing Services to have a clinic in Charles City. 

To serve our growing clientele, our professional office staff has expanded over the years.  Under the leadership of the Director of Operations, Alex Crippin, who joined Hearing Associates in February 2015, all of the staffat Hearing Associates is able to do everything possible to make the patient experience pleasant and life changing.  They assist in improving hearing and in turn enhance the daily life, overall health, and relationships for our patients.

This includes three friendly front desk personnel:  Front Office Coordinator, Carrie Galkin, and Front Office Professionals, Melissa Green, and Katelin Lugar. Our Patient Care Coordinator, Justin Mayer, connects with new and returning patients to answer questions, address concerns, and encourage them to set up their next appointment. Heather Sims is our vital Insurance and Billing Coordinator.  

As one chapter comes to a close, a new one begins… 

In December of 2014, Gary retired after over 30 years of helping thousands of patients achieve better hearing. Gary always said, “We strive to provide the very best in hearing healthcare, one patient at a time.” While it was bittersweet to see Gary go, we are confident in our ability to continue this tradition of delivering “the very best” in years to come. 

A lot has changed in thirty years, including nearly invisible hearing aids that are Bluetooth or iPhone compatible, audiometric tools that allow us to perform evaluations with pinpoint accuracy, and a growing staff to meet the needs of our nine clinics. One thing that has not and will never change, however, is our commitment to our patients.

Because Hearing Associates, P.C. has been as much a part of the community as the patients we serve for decades, we have had the pleasure of serving generations of families. It is a joy and honor to earn the trust of returning patients and their referrals to extended family members and friends. We genuinely desire to provide hearing care that makes a positive difference in the lives of so many. We look forward to continuing our goal of providing exceptional audiology service.

Caring For You

Hearing loss sneaks up on you, robs you of opportunities and places strain on your relationships, career and quality of life. But you don’t have to settle for isolation.

At Hearing Associates, P.C., we’ve been providing patients in Albert Lea, Minnesota, Mason City, and the surrounding communities in northern Iowa with friendly, expert audiology services since 1987. We’re dedicated to helping you improve your quality of life through better hearing.

Our patient-centered services for both children and adults include:

Begin your journey to better hearing at Hearing Associates, PC. Our main office is located in Mason City but we have added audiology outreach clinics through northern Iowa and in Albert Lea, Minnesota.

Hearing Associates has worked closely with the ENT Clinic at The Mason City Clinic serving Mercy North Iowa Hospital, Mason City. The staff at Mason City ENT Clinic continue to be an integral part of sharing the care for mutual patients. These locations include Britt, Cresco, Hampton, Iowa Falls, New Hampton, and Osage. 

Schedule an appointment today!

We're also a member of the Mason City Chamber of Commerce. For additional information about our good standing, click the image below.


Hearing Aids

Bone Anchored Hearing Aids

At Hearing Associates P.C., we are committed to providing excellent customer service and quality hearing aids since 1987. We are your hearing healthcare expert in Mason City, Northern Iowa, and Albert Lea, Minnesota. We offer a wide range of patient-focused audiology services, including screenings for candidacy for Bone Anchored Hearing Aids and bone conduction testing.

What are Bone Anchored Hearing Aids?

Bone Anchored Hearing Aids (BAHAs) are surgically implanted and uses your natural ability to create sound to detour around the damaged outer and middle ear, and then sends clear and crisp sounds directly to your inner ear through the skull (or bone conduction). It differs from a normal hearing aid because a hearing aid pushes sound through the damaged part of the ear.

Baha Young Adult Female listening to music

History of BAHA

The world's first bone conduction implant was created more than 35 years ago, and it opened up many possibilities for people suffering from conductive hearing loss, mixed hearing loss and single-sided deafness. Since it was created, the technology of BAHA has changed the lives of more than 120,000 people.


Sufferers of hearing loss can benefit from BAHAs, especially ones with chronic middle ear or outer ear problems. The first category of candidates that benefit are patients with natural defects of the ear who aren’t able to wear hearing aids may be candidates for a BAHA. As long as one of their ears has a cochlea that can hear. The second category of candidates are patients with single-sided deafness. This can include patients who have lost all or most of their hearing in one ear, but have good hearing in the other. A BAHA may be an excellent alternative for patients who do not find a traditional hearing aid helpful.

BAHA is FDA approved for children over the age of five. For children with hearing loss under the age of 5, Cochlear has recently launched the SoundArc - a product for children who are too young for surgery or adults who want to trial the product before moving forward with the implant system.

How it Works

The BAHA system is centered around bone conduction. It uses a titanium implant, which is surgically placed in the skull bone behind the non-functioning ear. A brace connects the sound processor with the implant in the bone. This connection creates direct bone conduction but in contrast, some traditional bone conductors attach indirectly to the bone through unbroken skin and work by applying pressure on the skull. Direct bone conduction, provided by BAHAs, may provide enhanced access to sound when compared to traditional because sound is not faded when passing through the skin, muscle and fat covering the skull.

Hearing Associates does not perform the surgeries but we refer our patients to local ENT’s. We are able to screen for candidacy and we do complete bone conduction testing. We also sell the devices and provide the ENT with client medical recommendations.

At Hearing Associates, you can expect courteous service, thorough follow-up care, and a lasting commitment to your satisfaction at all of our locations. Schedule your appointment today!

HIW Baha Attract System

Widex Hearing Aids

440px Widex logoThe Widex product collection features hearing aids for all forms of hearing loss. Let Hearing Associates in Mason City, Iowa and Albert Lea Minnesota uncover your needs and explore how Widex products and solutions can help you. We will help you chose the right hearing aid to fit your lifestyle and needs.

With Widex, you get a powerful and real listening experience. Being able to hear speech and sounds and having conversations both in-person and on the phone is essential.

UNIQUE Hearing Aids

  • A broader sound picture, hearing both soft and loud sounds with ease
  • Unsurpassed wind noise reduction system, perfect in windy surroundings
  • Automatically detects your listening situation and produces the right sound at the right time
  • Allows you to hear more sounds, no matter where you are, or what you're doing
    • UNIQUE CIC (Completely In Canal) MICRO -one of the smallest CIC’s on the market
    • UNIQUE XP –made for those who prefer power and functionality
    • UNIQUE Passion –discreet and sophisticated, practically invisible
    • UNIQUE Fusion –with three different receivers, these are customizable with ear-tip and ear mold options
    • UNIQUE Fashion & Fashion Mini - incredible sound in a compact, comfortable BTE (Behind The Ear) with an extremely long battery life.

SUPER Hearing Aids

  • Perfect solution when you need power and clarity with no distortion
  • Small and stylish RITE (Receiver-in-the-ear)
  • Comfortable enough when you hear what people behind you are saying
  • Blocks background noise in environments such as a restaurant
  • Weather resistant for outdoor elements
  • Powerful with a long battery life

At Hearing Associates, our knowledgeable staff will answer all of your questions about Widex hearing aids and how they can help with your hearing loss.
Schedule an appointment at our main office in Mason City, or our other locations in northern Iowa and Minnesota.

Starkey Hearing Aids

Starkey Hearing Aids

starkeyHearing loss is something you just simply cannot ignore. Untreated, it can create severe effects on your well-being and health, but early treatment can make a huge difference. At Hearing Associates in Mason City, Iowa and Albert Lea, Minnesota will help you chose the right hearing aid to fit your needs.

Over time, decreased stimulation to your ears and brain can actually damage the brain's capability to process sounds and speech. When you are unable to hear every day sounds, your mental alertness and communication skills can suffer. The earlier you start to manage your hearing loss with hearing aids, the sooner you will start to notice the benefits.

starkey 2


Halo & Halo 2

  • Made for iPhone to stream phone calls, music and more, directly to your hearing aids
  • Delivers perfect sound and listening clarity
  • Reduce buzzing and whistling sounds
  • Helps you understand conversations and listen comfortably 

SoundLens Synergy

  • Invisible and small, unnoticeable for others
  • Custom-made for you
  • For mild to moderately severe hearing loss

Muse, Z Series, 3 Series & Xino Wireless

  • These technologies are available in the following styles :
    • Receiver-In-Canal (RIC)
    • Completely-In-Canal (CIC)
    • Behind-The-Ear (BTE)
    • In-The-Canal (ITC)
    • In-The-Ear (ITE)
  • Discreet design
  • Assortment of color options available
  • Custom-made for you
  • Easy to adjust with rotary dial
  • For mild to severe hearing loss

Tinnitus Relief

  • Variety of color options
  • Easy to use buttons and/or dials
  • First-ever touch control panel

Hearing Amplifiers

  • Designed for patients not ready for hearing aids or first-time users
  • Invisible in most ears
  • Easy to remove

At Hearing Associates, our knowledgeable staff will answer all of your questions about Starkey hearing aids. Schedule an appointment at our main office in Mason City, or our other locations in northern Iowa and Albert Lea Minnesota.

Unitron Hearing Aids

unitron logo1At Unitron, they design hearing devices to reach just the right balance of desirable aesthetics, complete comfort and functionality, so they fit effortlessly into each patient’s life. Hearing Associates in Mason City, Iowa and Albert Lea, Minnesota will help you chose the right hearing aid to fit your needs.
Unitron’s goal is to create an easy and enjoyable hearing experience for their customers. When the patient is wearing a comfortable hearing aid, they are able to experience the advanced technology that is provided during sound amplification.



Moxi Hearing Aid Family

  • Moxi Fit- It’s new inside and out. Enjoy style and functionality in perfect harmony, with a 312 battery, push button and telecoil.
  • Moxi Kiss- Award-winning style, plus a 312 battery and fully automatic performance. There’s nothing more satisfying than a Kiss.
  • Moxi Dura- Offers reliability and durability, with a 13 battery that easily keeps up with whatever each new day brings.
  • Moxi Now – The world’s smallest wireless receiver-in-the-canal (RIC) hearing aid, the tiny Moxi Now delivers comfort, aesthetics, and functionality. Just “set and forget” this hearing aid and wear it comfortably, all day long. The Moxi Now technology allows wearers to enjoy conversations while experiencing natural sound.
  • Moxi Fit R - A rechargeable hearing aid the same style and functionality as the Moxi Fit


  • Stride M - Behind-the-ear hearing aid that offers comfortable fit, and intuitive control with a 312 batter
  • Stride MR - Rechargeable version of the Stride M
  • Stride P - A wireless 13 battery behind-the-ear  hearing aid 
  • Stride P Dura - The most durable and moisture resitant design.


The Tempus Insera is an in-the-ear hearing aid, ideal for those with a quiet, conversational lifestyle.


At Hearing Associates, our knowledgeable staff will answer all of your questions about Unitron hearing aids.Schedule an appointment at our main office in Mason City, or our other locations in northern Iowa and Albert Lea Minnesota.

ReSound Hearing Aids

Gn ReSound LogoHearing has never been so effortless. There are many reasons as to why you should join the smart hearing revolution. Hearing Associates in Mason City, Iowa and Albert Lea, Minnesota will help you chose the right hearing aid to fit your needs.




ReSound LiNX2

With ReSound LiNX2, you’ll discover all the benefits of smarter hearing that fits your lifestyle. Effortless hearing, just as nature intended it to be. Uncomplicated.

  • Top-rated sound quality and comfort with surround sound by ReSound™
  • Modern, discreet and durable
  • Full range of designs and colors
  • High quality, durable materials
  • Components coated with iSolate™ nanotech to repel water, dust, earwax and sweat
  • Direct stereo streaming made for Android and Apple products, like Bluetooth earphones
  • New Binaural Directionality™II with Spatial Sense™ supports the brain’s natural capacity when processing sounds

ReSound Smart App

  • Adjust volume, treble and bass
  • Speech is easier to understand
  • Create your favorite programs
    • Reduced wind noise
    • Speech focus beam
    • Connect and control to your wireless accessories, like Apple Watch

Tinnitus treatment

ReSound LiNX2 combines both advanced and custom tinnitus therapy in their hearing aids. It works by directing attention away from your ears recognizing the tinnitus with selected pre-installed therapy sounds.

At Hearing Associates, our knowledgeable staff will answer all of your questions about ReSound hearing aids. Schedule an appointment at our main office in Mason City, or our other locations in northern Iowa and Albert Lea Minnesota.


Oticon Hearing Aids

Interested in an Oticon hearing device? Hearing Associates in Mason City will help you chose the right hearing aid to fit your needs.

With Oticon you can choose the hearing aid color, style and technology that makes you stand out against the crowd. They automatically adapt to your listening environment, and they're designed with customizable sound features to ensure you communicate freely and interact naturally. 


Oticon OPN






Now, the Oticon Opn portfolio expands with more styles and new features in three performance levels to cover hearing losses from mild to severe-to-profound. The award-winning Oticon Opn captured two CES 2017 awards; 'Tech for a Better World' and 'Wearable Technologies'

Opn – Rediscover the Sounds of Your Life
The first-ever hearing aid to connect to the Internet, the Opn uses BrainHearing technology to make listening easier on the brain. Wearers report 30% improved speech understanding, 20% reduced listening effort and 20% better recall of conversations.

Distinct features include:

  • The Velox platform uses extremely fast and precise technology to analyze sounds in differing soundscapes. With faster sound processing and a 64 frequency channel resolution, this tiny chip is a technological powerhouse.
  • TwinLink™ wireless technology ensures a natural listening experience.
  • The OpenSound Navigator™ reacts to sound 100+ times per second to remove noise between words. The Opn connects directly to the Internet through the If This Then That (IFTTT) service. With it, you can control everyday devices, like thermostats and doorbells, right from your hearing aids.
  • Tinnitus SoundSupport relieves sounds for tinnitus and provides relief that may help decrease the annoyance of tinnitus. The relief sounds can be customized to each unique need and preference. The integrated sound generator is available in all Oticon Opn styles and performance levels.
  • Feedback shield LX offers fast and effective feedback management. It instantly suppresses feedback to protect the listener from unwanted whistling and squealing, without compromising audibility or sound quality.
  • Speech Rescue™ LX provides access to inaudible high-frequency sounds. Speech Rescue LX may improve speech intelligibility when severe-to-profound hearing loss is present in the high frequencies.

Explore more possibilities with the Oticon ON app for your iPhone.

miniRITE-T - Sleek and Discreet
The miniRite-T features a telecoil and double push button for easy volume and program control. The fully featured solution includes Tinnitus SoundSupport, Speech Rescue LX, DSL, and TwinLink for 2.4 GHz wireless technology and Made for iPhone® functionality.

Oticon Opn™ is Now Rechargeable
Opn’s miniRITE is also rechargeable. Its hybrid battery design allows you to use either a rechargeable or a standard battery.

Dynamo - Slim and Powerful
With Dynamo your brain has access to the full spectrum of sounds and lets you capture more speech details.  Dynamo is as reliable and powerful. 

Alta2 and Alta2 Pro Ti - Ultimate Performance
The Alta2 hearing aid features Oticon’s new BrainHearing™ technology. This feature allows the user to experience optimized sound with less fatigue. With several different styles and colors, Alta can fit any lifestyle.

Nera2 and Nera2 Pro Ti -Reliably Exceptional
The most advanced mid-level hearing device, Nera2 blends the natural way your brain and ears work together into one cohesive device with BrainHearing™ technology. It works smarter so you don’t need to.

Ria2 and Ria Pro Ti - Redefining Hearing
Combining enhanced performance and outstanding quality, Ria2 delivers all you need at an affordable price. You’ll be able to understand conversations and everyday sounds more clearly than ever before.



The following Legacy Products are also available:
• Alta
• Nera
• Ria
• Agil
• Acto

At Hearing Associates, our knowledgeable staff will answer all of your questions about Oticon hearing aids. Schedule an appointment at our main office in Mason City, or our other locations in northern Iowa.

Hearing Aid Styles

As hearing aid technology continues to evolve, choosing the right style of hearing aid may become more challenging. At Hearing Associates, located in Mason City, the surrounding areas in northern Iowa, and Albert Lea, Minnesota, we understand that each person experiences hearing loss differently. We offer a wide variety of hearing aid styles, to meet your unique needs. Our expert staff uses the results of your hearing tests as well as your lifestyle needs, budget concerns and any cosmetic considerations you may have to help you choose the best hearing aid for you.

Because every hearing aid style is not suitable for every person, we carry a variety of hearing aids, each style with its own advantages and limitations.

Hearing aid styles differ by size, placement, features and the degree to which they amplify sound:

cic new

Completely-in-the-canal style hearing aids (CIC): The smallest and most discreet.
These fit completely in the canal and are made to fit your ears. There is a clear nylon post to help with insertion and removal. They are powered with a #10 hearing aid battery.

itc new

In-the-Canal style hearing aids (ITC): Larger than the CIC devices.
These fit within the ear canal and are custom-made. They are powered by a #312 or #10 hearing aid battery.

ite new

In-the-Ear style hearing aids (ITE): Fit in the "bowl" of the ear.
Made to fit your ears, the lightweight and compact size makes these instruments comfortable and easy to manage. They are powered by a #13 or #312 battery.

ric new

Receiver-In-The-Ear (RITE): Similar to conventional BTE devices.
These types of hearing aids are much smaller, and more discreet than the BTE style. A very small tube leads to the ear canal making this option much more cosmetically appealing while offering superior sound quality.

bte new

Behind-the-Ear style hearing aids (BTE): Largest modern hearing aid. The processing components are housed in a case that fits behind the ear. Sounds enter the instrument, are amplified, and travel through a tube that is contoured over the top of the listener's ear and into an earmold inside the ear. BTEs are durable, easy to handle and maintain, and can be easily adapted for use with the wide variety of assistive listening devices.

Hearing Aid Manufacturers

Hearing aid technology has changed dramatically in recent years. Digital hearing aid technology offers more variety, in style, size and capabilities. Each type of hearing aid has its own advantages and limitations. At Hearing Associates, we carry a variety of hearing aids, from simple to advanced, to accommodate all of our patients in Albert Lea, Minnesota, Mason City, and the surrounding communities in northern Iowa.

We understand that selecting the right hearing aid can be overwhelming. Our experienced audiologists will help you choose the best device for you, based on the results of your hearing tests as well as the shape of your ear, your lifestyle and your unique listening challenges. We carry instruments from some of the leading manufacturers in the industry: 


  • Oticon – From the OPN, the newest, most powerful device from Oticon to the affordable high-performance of the Ria2, Oticon offers a wide range of hearing aids, with a variety of flexible fitting and style options, enabling us to meet your every need.
  • Phonak– The new B Series of hearing aids from Phonak feature discreet, modern design and cover a broad range of hearing levels, providing great sound support – even in the most challenging listening situations. The Nadia product family is basic and available in behind-the-ear and receiver-in-canal models, and will suit those with severe to profound hearing loss.
  • Lyric – The new Lyric hearing aids feature extended wear technology that is virtually invisible. Our trained audiologists will place the devices inside your ears, where they can remain for up to 120 days, at which time they are removed and replaced with new devices. Designed for those with mild to moderately-severe hearing loss, Lyric devices offer premium, natural sound quality. Candidacy for these hearing aids is based on hearing loss, size and shape ofear as well as lifestyle and hearing needs.
Widex logo
  • Widex – Offering behind-the-ear and in-the-ear hearing aids, Widex brings wearers 60 years of hearing innovation. Hear more of the important sound details around you, and easily decipher conversations and softer sounds.
Gn ReSound Logo
  • ReSound – With a deep understanding of hearing aid wearers and audiology, ReSound boasts innovative hearing solutions. Their discreet and powerful hearing aids, like LINK and ENZO, make hearing effortless. ReSound has numerous wireless accessories and other hearing devices that enable wearers to better connect and interact, even in challenging listening situations.
unitron logo1
  • Unitron – The company has a unique philosophy: they never lose sight of the human side of hearing loss. As a global business with a local feel, Unitron has paired with leading audiologists to develop state-of-the-art hearing aids. Which style is best for you? Choose from behind-the-ear, in-the-ear, and wireless accessories.
  • Starkey – Find the right hearing aid for you with Starkey. Their nearly invisible hearing devices guarantee discretion and comfort. Connect directly to your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Apple Watch via the TruLink Hearing Control app.
Logo Siemens110930
  • Siemens – Enjoy better hearing with a unique hearing aid solution from Siemens. The new Siemens hearing aid brand offers innovative Bluetooth and wireless accessories. Plus provides lines for children and teens, too.
  • BAHA (Cochlear & Sophono) – Bone anchored hearing aids (BAHAs) are surgically implanted. These devices use your natural ability to create sound to detour around the damaged outer and middle ear, and then send clear and crisp sounds directly to your inner ear through the skull (or bone conduction). Cochlear hearing implants have helped over 450,000 people hear through innovative technology that fits your lifestyle. Sophono provides leading bone conduction hearing devices with the smallest implant and processor.

At Hearing Associates, we offer hearing solutions to fit your needs, from hearing evaluations, to balance testing, to hearing aid prescription, fittings and maintenance to ongoing consultation, we’re with you, every step of the way.

Schedule an appointment at our main office in Mason City, or our other locations in northern Iowa or Albert Lea, Minnesota.


lyricHave you heard the buzz about the newer hearing aid called the Lyric Extended Wear Device? Are you in Mason City or the surrounding area and looking for a Lyric hearing aid provider?

Hearing Associates, with locations throughout northern Iowa, is a Lyric-trained provider. That means our audiologists have received extensive training on programming and inserting the device.

This extended-wear hearing aid has received much acclaim because it is unlike any of its predecessors.

How is it different?

  • It’s invisible. So small that it fits entirely inside your ear canal, the Lyric is the most discreet hearing aid on the market.
  • The Lyric is comfortable and simple to use. Once placed, it remains in your ear for up to four months at a time, allowing you to hear 24-hours-a-day/7-days-a-week.
  • There are no batteries to change and no maintenance is required.
  • It offers amazing, natural sound quality. Because it is designed to work with your ear’s anatomy, using your outer ear to direct sound into your canal, this hearing aid delivers exceptional sound quality.

Whole EarCanal Color noBG3


How is it placed?

  • Our specially trained audiologist places the hearing aid in the ear canal, without the need for surgery or anesthetic. Once properly placed and comfortable, we will program the device to meet your specific needs.
  • After placement, we will instruct you how to adjust the settings and volume.
  • These hearing aids can be worn for up to four months. When they need to be replaced, you simply schedule a visit at our main office in Mason City or in one of other practices throughout northern Iowa.

Do you have questions about the Lyric hearing aids? Schedule an appointment today to find out if you’re a candidate for these revolutionary devices.

60 Day Return Policy

We understand that you might be nervous about trying hearing aids, but with our 60-day right-to-return privilege, you don’t have to be. You have 60 days to see how hearing aids work for you. Use them at home, at work, wherever you go. If you aren’t satisfied with your experience, you can return your hearing aids at the end of the trial period and receive a full refund.


The hearing aids of today are small, easy to use, and improve the user’s natural quality of life. Of course, this wasn’t always the case. The first hearing devices of the 1600s and 1700s were large and bulky. Shaped like large horns (or “ear trumpets”), they would funnel sound into the ear canal from the wide end to the narrow end, which was placed into the ear.

The Evolution of Hearing Devices and Styles

1800-1900: A Great Improvement

During the late Renaissance and Victorian periods, etiquette was everything, and these large devices were deemed to be socially unacceptable. With the advent of Alexander Graham Bell’s telephone, hearing aids became more available for the general population, and they also became less cumbersome. Bell’s carbon transmission technology enabled the production of smaller, electronic devices. These were worn around the neck, and included a battery. Although similar models of hearing aids were worn up until the 1990s, they continued to get smaller and smaller in size.

1800-1900: A Great Improvement

1900-1990: Miniaturization

The progression of hearing aid technology was truly put in motion by the advent of Alexander Graham Bell’s telephone. Hearing aids became a widely available resource, and since large, bulky hearing devices were deemed a social embarrassment, Bell’s technology enabled the production of smaller, electronic devices.  Battery miniaturization enabled hearing aids to be pocket- or purse-sized.

Present-Day Hearing Aids


Present-Day Hearing Aids

In the 20th century, new digitalized technology provided opportunities for further research about hearing loss, as well as hearing aid design and device options for the wearer. Digital circuitry and programming allowed sound to be amplified and adjusted as needed. Into the 21st century, hearing aids are nearly the size of your fingertip, are often the color of natural skin, and are self-adjusting devices, so that the wearer can focus less on adjustment and more on everyday living.

1900-1990: Miniaturization


Hearing aids may not be right for everyone. For those with situational hearing difficulties – when watching television or during telephone conversations, for example - we offer additional products to meet your unique hearing needs.

Assistive Listening Devices

  • Bluetooth capability - Certain cell phones and other devices can be amplified via Bluetooth technology
  • Amplified phones - These are for people who have trouble hearing telephone conversations. Amplified telephones offer clear sound, so you don’t have to strain to hear what’s going on. Financial assistance is available for qualifying individuals through the Access Iowa program.
  • FM systems - Technology that helps reduce background noise, so that you can focus on the sounds you actually want to hear and not environmental noise.

Hearing Aid Accessories

  • Batteries - We have cards, which contain 8 batteries, for $10 each. We also have 5 cards for $45, offering a 10% savings!
  • Filters - Guard against ear wax build-up with filters, which will keep your hearing aids working effectively.
  • Dryer boxes - Remove moisture and extend the lifespan of your hearing aids with dryer boxes.
  • Eargene - Lotion for relieving itchy, irritated ears.
  • Otoclips - Clothing clips to help prevent loss of BTE hearing aids
  • Super Dry Aid Packs - Protect hearing aids from moisture.

Custom Hearing Protection

  • Swim molds
  • Musician’s ear plugs

For comprehensive audiology services, including balance testing, as well state-of-the-art hearing aids and other technology, visit us at our main office in Mason City, outreach clinics throughout northern Iowa or in Albert Lea, Minnesota.

Hearing Aid Technology

What Happens Next

At Hearing Associates, you’re part of the team!

After an interview and a series of in-depth hearing tests, our audiologists will sit down with you and discuss your results as well. If we determine that hearing aids are the best solution, we will look at the severity of your hearing loss, your lifestyle, your particular hearing needs and challenges. We'll discuss your options and concerns, and then then recommend the type of hearing aids we believe will be most beneficial for you. We encourage you to ask questions, and go over all the different styles and choices before making your decision.

Once you have chosen your hearing aids, we take any required measurements and then will order them. When your hearing aids arrive, you'll come in to have them fitted and programmed. We perform tests to make sure that they are working properly and to your specifications before you walk out our door.

Maintenance and Follow-up Care

Hearing aids are an investment. In order for them to work most efficiently and last longer, proper care is required. We will teach you how to clean and care for your devices. We will show you to program your hearing aids, as well as how to store them and change the batteries.

We carry hearing aid batteries and additional products that will help you care for your devices, such as dryer boxes and filters to prevent wax build-up.

We also encourage you to bring your hearing aids into our branch in Albert Lea, Minnesota, main office in Mason City, or any of our other offices located in northern Iowa, for quarterly cleanings and maintenance, repairs or if you need help programming them.


There is a period of adaptation as your ears and brain reenter the world of sound. If you have any questions or concerns during this adjustment, please do not hesitate to ask. We want you to get the very most out of your hearing aids and are eager to help you in that process in any way.

You can find us in Mason City, throughout northern Iowa, and in Albert Lea, Minnesota. We look forward to teaming up with you on your journey to better hearing. Schedule your appointment at any of the Hearing Associates, PC practice locations.


Lyric Premier Elite Long Bronze 2016 Vector


Facts About Hearing Aid Batteries

With all the different styles and brands of hearing aids today, you might think there are an equally large variety of batteries to power them. The good news is that hearing aid manufacturers have developed a standard for all hearing aid batteries to make it as easy as possible for consumers.

While there are a few models of hearing aids that may use rechargeable or long-life batteries, the vast majority of hearing aids are powered by zinc batteries. Round button cell zinc-air batteries are the standard for all types and brands of hearing aids, whether it is behind the ear, in the canal, in the ear or any other type. The batteries come in several sizes identified by numbers and colors. That way, no matter the manufacturer of the battery, the size and color will always be the same. The most commonly used sizes and colors are:

  • 5 - red - for CICs
  • 10 - yellow - for CICs and RICs
  • 13 - orange - for BTEs and ITEs
  • 312 - brown - for mini BTEs, RICs and ITCs
  • 675 - blue - for High Power BTEs and Cochlear Implants

The batteries are activated by removing the tab and will continually provide power for about two weeks with normal use. The flat side of the battery is the positive terminal and the rounded side is the negative terminal to make it easy to insert into the hearing aid battery door.

ZPower Rechargeable Hearing AidsRechargeable Hearing Aids are now available from all major models: Starkey, Unitron, Oticon, ReSound, Widex.  Visit our blog to learn more.

Rechargeable hearing aids are eco-friendly and save money on batteries, there is a rechargeable model for all levels of hearing loss.Rechargeable hearing aids are eco-friendly and save money on batteries, there is a rechargeable model for all levels of hearing loss.

Any new hearing aid purchase will be upgraded to rechargeable, at no additional cost for a limited time.  Additional information on rechargeable hearing aids: https://zpowerhearing.com/

We are a hearing aid battery drop off site. We recycle all hearing aid batteries.  If you have questions about hearing aid batteries, contact Hearing Associates in Mason City Iowa. 


Hearing Aid Battery Recycle

Hearing Loss and Dementia

Did you know your hearing loss might be causing you to miss more than you realize?
Untreated hearing loss can lead to social isolation and excessive cognitive overload, which may eventually cause dementia.

A recent study at Johns Hopkins University tracked brain changes in 126 people over the course of a decade. Each participant completed a hearing test, and the results revealed 75 people with normal hearing, and 51 people with impaired hearing of at least a 25-decibel loss.

What they learned:

  • Hearing impaired participants at the start of the study had accelerated rates of brain tissue loss when compared to those with normal hearing.
  • Those with impaired hearing lost more than one additional cubic centimeter of brain tissue each year when compared to participants with normal hearing.
  • The impaired hearing group also had significantly more shrinkage in regions of the brain responsible for processing sound and speech.

Early intervention is important for treating hearing loss. By scheduling a hearing exam at one of our audiology offices in northern Iowa, you can take action against dementia and preventable brain tissue loss. Contact us today to find out how.

How to Choose an Audiologist

Wondering how to choose the right hearing aid for your hearing loss?

At Hearing Associates, serving patients in Mason City and the surrounding communities in Northern Iowa and Albert Lea, Minnesota, we know the process can be overwhelming. With the variety of makes and models of digital hearing aids available online and in large retailers, we want you to have all the information you need to choose the best hearing aids to fit your hearing, lifestyle and budget needs.

The most important factor in choosing the right hearing aid is choosing the right provider.

Many people are tempted to go with the lowest price and choose a hearing aid online, only to discover after purchase the quality of the product is not up to par. You may have saved some cash, but if the hearing aid isn’t effective, you’ve actually just wasted money. Online distributors cannot properly fit, adjust or program your hearing aids for you. They cannot offer hearing evaluations or make recommendations based on your unique hearing loss. Because you’re to test the hearing aids before purchasing online, be sure to research the refund and exchange policies.

Large chain retailers often offer discounted prices but there are drawbacks associated with purchasing hearing aids from big-box stores. The providers at these retailers do not have the amount of education and experience that you’ll find in a private practice. With restrictions on access to all of the major hearing aid manufacturers, you’re options will be limited. If they’re paid on commission, your hearing may not be their focus and they may try to oversell on hearing aids with unnecessary features and accessories. And finally, do you really want to purchase your hearing aids from the same place you’re purchasing toilet paper in bulk and an eighty ounce jar of mayonnaise?

When you seek treatment from an audiologist, like those you’ll find at Hearing Associates, you’ll receive expert advice, comprehensive testing services, and recommendations from someone with education and experience in the field of audiology.

After an interview about your medical and hearing history, we conduct a series of tests. We’ll offer treatment solutions based the results of your tests, your personal listening challenges, your lifestyle and your needs. If we determine that you’re a candidate for hearing aids, we have a wide range of makes and models for you try from the best manufacturers in the industry. As an independent practice, we have no obligations or sales quotas to meet. We’ll assist you in finding the right hearing aid, with the features to improve your quality of life through better hearing.

Now you know how to select the perfect Audiologist for your hearing needs; meet your match in Mason City or Albert Lea, Minnesota at Hearing Associates, and learn more about what an Audiologist is, and why they may be the best fit for you.

It’s more than just your hearing

Hearing loss is caused by long-term or sudden noise exposure or damage to the auditory nerve or auditory hair cells, which results in the impaired ability to hear and understand speech. But hearing loss affects more than just your hearing; it affects your entire well-being.

Hearing loss has been linked to several life-threatening illnesses, including diabetes, heart disease and kidney disease. The condition can affect mental health too, often leading to depression, dementia and Alzheimer’s. And, because of the strong link between inner-ear function and balance, hearing loss puts you at risk for falls that result from dizziness and vertigo.

Hearing loss also distances you from your loved ones, making it difficult to maintain close relationships. The condition can get in the way of your career as well. You may appear incompetent to your peers when the reality is that you’re having difficulty hearing, not understanding.

All things considered, hearing loss puts you at a significant disadvantage. We offer hope and the possibility of a life free from hearing loss. Let the experienced audiologists at Hearing Associates, P.C. help you hear what you’ve been missing.

Stereotypes Revealed

There are many misconceptions and stereotypes associated with hearing loss, often preventing those with the condition from seeking treatment.

Hearing loss

Many people believe that hearing loss is a sign of old age. The truth is that people from all walks of life are affected by hearing loss, regardless of age, gender and race. Although hearing naturally degrades over time, making it more likely to manifest itself in old age, hearing loss is not exclusive to the elderly. In fact, recent trends suggest that hearing loss is now affecting more and more younger people.

Hearing aids

A lot of people are under the impression that hearing aids don’t work, which explains why only 1 out of 5 people with hearing loss actually seeks treatment. The stigma attached to hearing aids is a result of improper fittings and outdated devices, because, with digital processing and advancements in technology, hearing aids do work. They work so well that 4 out of 5 hearing aid users say that the technology improves both their hearing and their quality of life. Those same users also claim that they would recommend hearing aids to family and friends. Do yourself a favor: don’t write off hearing aids before you’ve given them a fair chance.

Our promise to you

We aren’t going to box you in or put your entire personality into a neat category. You’re a human being, a unique individual and you deserve to be treated as such. We promise that, when you’re under our care, stereotypes and biases are thrown out the window. We start where all hearing professionals should: with you.

Schedule your appointment today to receive personalized care from our experienced audiologists.

Hearing Information

The Internet puts a world of knowledge at our fingertips, but it still can be hard to find accurate and reliable information about audiology, hearing loss, hearing aids, as well as hearing and balance testing in one convenient place. That’s why we provide detailed facts and answers to frequently asked questions about hearing loss right here. You’ll also learn about the stereotypes attached to hearing loss and hearing aids and why they’re little more than persistent rumors.

If you have questions, or suspect you have hearing loss, schedule an appointment at our main office in Mason City, or at our outreach clinics location throughout northern Iowa.


What can I expect from hearing aids?

Hearing aids improve your ability to hear and understand speech and sounds. Many users require a short adjustment period though, especially if they’ve been living with hearing loss for a long period of time. It takes time to get used to hearing new sounds, but it pays off when you’re able to hear the world around you again.

What’s the difference between an audiologist and ENTs/Hearing Aid Dispensers?

Ear, Nose and Throat doctors can treat hearing conditions, but their focus is divided between the other areas they cover. Hearing aid dispensers can prescribe and fit hearing aids, but their knowledge of audiology is limited to that technology.

Audiologists are focused completely on hearing, have more training and knowledge of the hearing process than dispensers, and are uniquely qualified to offer comprehensive treatment for hearing loss.

Schedule a hearing evaluation today and let us help you hear what you’ve been missing.

How does hearing loss affect individuals?

While hearing loss varies from person to person, most people experience similar symptoms. Many people feel isolated from their surroundings, friends and family. Some avoid conversations and public events because of their problem. Also, some people react with denial or frustration.

We understand the effects of hearing loss and we’re here to help. With the proper treatment and care, we can alleviate the symptoms.

Can I live with hearing loss?

Yes, it’s possible to live with hearing loss, but ignoring the problem puts you at risk of developing psychological issues, such as frustration and depression, and medical conditions, including heart and kidney disease. Also, living with hearing loss makes communication with friends, family, and business contacts difficult, which leads to a decrease in the quality of your life.

Is it possible to be hearing-impaired and not know it?

Yes. Because of the gradual nature of hearing loss, many individuals affected by it do not realize the severity of their situation. If you suspect you have a hearing problem, it’s best to get a hearing screening before your condition worsens.

How prevalent is hearing loss?

Hearing loss is quite common. It currently affects over 30 million people in the United States alone. That’s one in ten!

Are some people more at risk for hearing loss?

Yes. The following groups of people are at a higher risk of developing hearing loss:

  • Firefighters
  • Police officers
  • Factory workers
  • Construction workers
  • Military personnel
  • Musicians
  • Entertainment industry professionals
  • Teachers
  • Those who have parents or grandparents with congenital hearing loss

Schedule an appointment today to assess your risk.

What is the ringing in my ears?

That’s called Tinnitus. The ringing is most often a result of damage to your auditory system. It can be constant or occasional and can occur in one specific ear or in the middle of your head. If you’re experiencing a sensation similar to what’s been described, we recommend that you schedule a hearing screening as soon as possible.

What is the main cause of hearing loss?

There are many factors that can contribute to the development of hearing loss, but exposure to noise is the most common reason for the condition.

What are some other causes of hearing loss?

  • Heredity
  • Chemotherapy and radiation treatments
  • Certain antibiotics
  • Trauma
  • Wax build-up
  • Ear and viral infections


Hearing Associates Partners with KIMT for Hearing Aid Giveaway

KIMT HearingAssocGiveaway 300X250

Hearing Associates is excited to announce it will be partnering with KIMT to give away a free pair of hearing aids! 

How the Contest Works

The contest is simple: Go to the KIMT Contest page and fill out the survey under the Hearing Associates “Hearing Aid Giveaway.” Everyone who completes the survey will receive a complimentary hearing evaluation. At the end of the contest, a winner will be selected to receive a free pair of hearing aids.

How Do Allergies Affect Hearing Loss?

Image of woman holding flower covering her nose With allergy season quickly approaching, the team at Hearing Associates wants to help you maintain optimal hearing while dealing with sniffles and sneezes throughout the season.

Non-Hearing Aid Wearers

Whether you have hearing loss or not, you may notice a decline in hearing capabilities during allergy season. For example, should you develop skin irritations on your face or neck, swelling of your outer ear can affect hearing.

Allergies can cause fluid or wax build up in the ear and create temporary hearing loss. However, if excess wax prevents fluids from properly draining, an infection can develop. Repeated ear infections can cause hearing loss.

New Hearing Aid Battery Technology from Rayovac

Rayovac Battery Breakdown


Rayovac, the manufacturer of the best hearing aid batteries on the market, has an even better battery to offer patients – and Hearing Associates has it in stock.

The Rayovac Active Core Technology has been designed to meet the needs of the latest hearing aid technology. Many hearing aid wearers express that hearing aid battery longevity as the most important factor when choosing hearing aids.

Cochlear Releases Baha SoundArc to Help Children with Hearing Loss

SoundArc 2Hearing Associates P.C. is now providing maintenance services for the Baha SoundArc for patients in Albert Lea, Minnesota, Mason City, and at their additional locations in Northern Iowa.

The Baha SoundArc is a non-surgical bone conduction wearing device acting as an alternative to the Baha Softband.

The SoundArc is a behind-the-head band designed to improve hearing in children with conductive hearing loss, mixed hearing loss or single-sided sensorineural deafness. The device is recommended for children who are not yet eligible or ready for an implant but are in need of taking the first step to hearing.

Hearing Hazards

hearing protectionThere are many contributing factors to hearing loss, but the items often overlooked are the auditory hazards around us all day: in our homes or at our job.

According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD), auditory levels below 75 decibel (dB) are safe. However, prolonged exposure of sounds above 85 dB can lead to noise-induced hearing loss. This permanent health condition affects roughly 40 million adults in the US.

Cardiovascular Disease and Your Hearing

hearing aid heartStudies have shown that your cardiovascular system can have a direct effect on your hearing. That’s because interrupted blood flow or trauma to the blood vessels of the inner ear can be contributing factors to hearing loss.

Studies have shown that individuals with cardiovascular issues are 50% more likely to experience hearing loss. Of patients who had at least one heart attack, 80% had damage to their inner ear.

According to David R. Friedland, MD, Ph.D., Professor and Vice Chair at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, the inner ear is affected by blood flow so much that cardiovascular problems can be detected in this part of the body before other regions.

Because of this, hearing loss can in some cases be an early identifier of cardiovascular issues.

Smartphone Compatibility

cell phone with app screenWith more people embracing new technology, hearing aid manufacturers are developing ways to assist people of all ages with hearing loss.

In-Ear Streaming

Utilizing a smartphone app, a hearing aid wearer can answer a call and have it stream directly into their hearing device. Aside from phone calls, the hearing aid wearer can stream music and driving directions, much like wearing earbuds. When you are in a crowded, noisy setting, the smartphone can be used as a directional microphone, which can stream a conversation directly to the hearing aid.

Stress and Hearing Loss

stress can cause hearing issuesStress is inevitable. Our fast-paced lives bring stressors daily or even hourly.

But did you know that stress can impact you emotionally and physically? In fact, it can even affect your hearing.   

Stress affects your body’s blood circulation, including in your inner ear. Hair cells in the inner ear are fragile and require a steady stream of blood to distribute oxygen and nutrients. If there isn’t a constant blood flow to the ears, the ear cells can be damaged, or even destroyed. 

Here are some ways to manage your stress and preserve your hearing.

Great Gifts for Hearing Aid Wearers

giftsAs the holidays approach, there’s always that one person on your list who is hard to buy for. If that person is a hearing aid wearer (or if you wear hearing aids and want to drop a few hints), here is a list of items that are practical and fun.

A Dehumidifier

Condensation can develop in hearing aids when transitioning inside from the outdoors. A dehumidifier can reduce the effects condensation and moisture damage has on hearing aids.

Hearing the Holidays

Family holidayThe holiday season is a time to get together with family and friends, share stories and enjoy a good meal. For those experiencing hearing loss, however, these large gatherings are often more stressful than joyful. 

If you have a loved one who is experiencing hearing loss, here are some ways to make the holidays a little more enjoyable for them.


Cheerful Giving to the Christmas Cheer Fund

cheer fundHelp us grant the Christmas wishes of Northern Iowa children this holiday season.

To help make the holiday’s special, we’ve partnered with The Globe Gazette Good Cheer Fund to make sure every child in need has a present to open this year.

The Christmas Cheer Fund began in 1927 with the hopes that every child would have a gift on Christmas morning.  It has since grown to help families of all ages.

The rules are simple: Like our Facebook page. To make sure all of the presents are wrapped and under the trees by Christmas, our Cheerful Wishes campaign will only run until December 20th, or until our $1000 goal has been reached.

For every new person that “Likes” our page, we’ll donate $1 to the Globe Gazette’s Christmas Cheer Fund. You can help reach more families by sharing the page and encouraging others to “like” it as well. 

To learn more about the Christmas Cheer Fund and the 2017 applicants, visit http://globegazette.com/

Using a HSA or FSA for Hearing Aids

HSA FSA cardsWith the holidays approaching, many are looking to expand their budget for gifts and charitable giving. One area people commonly overlook is their medical needs, and the funds in their Health Savings or Flexible Spending Accounts.

Many are unaware that their hearing aids, hearing aid batteries and additional hearing device equipment are covered by an HSA and FSA. 

Save on Batteries – Go Rechargeable!

MoxiFitR Charger Left ASNearly every hearing aid manufacturer provides rechargeable hearing device options. But what are the benefits of these devices versus traditional ones? The experts at Hearing Associates explain why you should consider the rechargeable option if you’re in the market for new hearing aids.

Save Money on Batteries

After the initial investment in a docking station, there’s no need to purchase additional batteries. Not only does this save on those purchases, but it also saves you an extra trip to the store when all you need is a package of batteries. 

Save and Share Your Old Hearing Aids

The Lion's ClubAfter you’ve upgraded your hearing aids, what do you do with the old ones? Did you know there are organizations that can recycle, refurbish and even refurbish your old hearing aids?

Hearing Associates works with the Iowa Lions Club Hearing Aid Bank, who accepts unused hearing aid devices, refurbishes them, and distributes them to qualified individuals.  If you or someone you know is in need of financial aid for a hearing device, you can apply for assistance.

If you have an old set of hearing aids you would like to donate, bring them into Hearing Associates and we will send them to the Iowa Lions Club on your behalf. We are happy to provide a receipt for the tax-deductible donation of the hearing aids.


Pros & Cons of The Hearing Aid Act

Stuart Trembath recently spoke to KIMT 3 News regarding the recent Over-The-Counter Hearing Aid Legislation.  He shared some of the benefits, but also some of the concerns with purchasing hearing devises online.  Watch his interview, and contact us 888.760.2032 for your comprehensive hearing test.  

Announcing the new ReSound LiNX 3D Hearing Aid

octimage linx3d

GN Hearing has launched the ReSound LiNX 3D™, a hearing aid designed for the tech savvy and on-the-go wearer.

The quality of sound with the ReSound LiNX 3D™ will allow background noise to be easily identified so conversations can be heard clear. The ReSound LiNX 3D™ can connect your smartphone with your hearing aid for instant setting changes. This allows you to adjust your hearing aids setting directly from your smartphone if you go from a quiet setting to a noisy environment.

The ReSound LiNX 3D™ also allows you to stay connected to your audiologist. A cloud based function allows you to inform your hearing specialists of any issues that come up. This feature can even be used outside of office hours and remotely.

If you’re interested in learning more about The ReSound LiNX 3D™ and how it can be used in your life, contact Hearing Associates PC at 888-760-2032 and schedule a consultation today.


How to identify hearing loss in children


Hearing loss affects 1 in 250 children between the ages of 3-17. While infant screenings are able to identify any immediate hearing concerns at birth, a number of factors come into play with children as they age. 

Hearing loss can usually be connected to genetic issues, illness, or injury. A significant increase in hearing loss is often identified during the teen years due to the use of earbuds and headphones. 


Hearing Loops clarify sounds in busy places

hearingloopThere is no doubt that hearing aids assist people who are hard of hearing, but their effectiveness in group settings can sometimes be questionable due to background noises. This is why many public places that have a lot of background noise – such as hospitals and subways – have installed hearing loops.

Hearing loops allow people with hearing aids to clearly understand sounds in a speaker system, even in high traffic areas. By using a sound system that links to your hearing aid, hearing loops send sounds directly from the sound system to your hearing aid.

Regardless of your type of hearing loss or hearing aid, hearing loops do not distort sounds and eliminate background noise.

Knowing When to Change Your Hearing Devices

ear doctorYour hearing devices are your gateway for hearing the world around you. That’s why it’s important to make sure they are doing everything they can for your hearing.

Here are some reasons why it may be time for you to update your hearing devices:

Your hearing changes

As you age, your hearing continues to change. Even small changes can make a big difference in your hearing health. That’s why it’s important to have your hearing checked regularly and make sure your hearing aids are fulfilling your needs.


Hearing Associates Donates to Local Charities

My Happy Haven

We will be donating a portion of all hearing aid sales during the month of July to My Happy Haven, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing beautiful bedroom makeovers for women with cancer.

My Happy Haven gathers volunteers and sponsors to build sanctuaries so that the people they help will have a place to relax and heal from the challenges of their disease. You may have heard of My Happy Place, the sister organization to My Happy Haven, that focuses on makeover projects for children. 

"My Happy Haven is a community based non-profit organization, comprised of volunteers dedicated to making a real difference in the life of a woman facing the fear and struggles of a cancer diagnosis. We do this by providing these women with a bedroom makeover, giving them an environment in which to rest peacefully and heal from the effects of cancer and its’ treatments. We work closely with the woman so we can offer her a bedroom that reflects her personal needs and desires."

May Reminds Us To Take Care Of Our Hearing

Spring HearingTake good care of your hearing.

That’s the message our audiologists want to spread this May during Better Speech and Hearing Month. Speech and Hearing are two of life's greatest gifts. We need them to communicate and enjoy the many sounds the world has to offer.

However, the gift of hearing can be lost if we don't take proper care of our ears.  People lose their hearing all too often because they expose themselves to conditions that are damaging.

Here are some simple ways you can take better care of your hearing without having to change your lifestyle.

Phonak reveals industry’s first titanium hearing aid

Virto BPhonak has just set a new standard for hearing aids by unveiling the industry’s only titanium hearing aid.

The Phonak Virto B-Titanium is made with medical-grade titanium and is custom made for every customer so it fits perfectly and discretely into your ear. Being made of titanium also means they are also among the strongest, lightest and most durable hearing aids on the market.

Popularity on the Rise For Rechargeable Hearing Aids

rechargeable hearing aids siemens echarger in tucson azRechargeable hearing aids have become a high priority among users and providers in recent months. While they have been around for decades, recent technology enhancements have put them in high demand.

It was recently discovered that as many as 70 percent of hearing aid users would prefer rechargeable hearing aids over traditional models that require the batteries to be replaced. This is part of the reason rechargeable hearing aid batteries were such a highlighted item at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

Accommodation Tips for Guest with Hearing Loss

Family HearingThe Easter holiday can be a great time for families to get together and visit one another. But for people with hearing loss, spring time get-togethers can be a stressful, even with hearing aids.

While everyone else is enjoying group conversations, people with hearing loss may be having a difficult time following conversations and hearing what everyone is saying.

If you are hosting a get-together this year, here are some tips for accommodating a loved one with hearing loss:

Positive Thinking Can Reduce Tinnitus!

TinnitusA positive attitude goes a long way in preserving your mental and physical health. Relaxation techniques, sports and social activities can help you take better control of your life – even if you suffer from tinnitus.

What is tinnitus?
Tinnitus is a subjective experience where the sufferer hears sound when there’s no physical sound source present. People experience it as ear-ringing, which might sound like hissing, rushing, roaring or chirping.

It’s estimated that 50 million Americans have some degree of tinnitus. Of those sufferers, only 12 million seek auditory help.

Hearing Associates Gives Back to the Community

Stuart Trembath

Community Kitchen of North Iowa

November 11, 2016 – MASON CITY – Hearing Associates donated $13,800 to the Community Kitchen of North Iowa Wednesday evening.

“This week, we had the opportunity to give back to the community as a staff. We were humbled and blessed by the people we were able to serve at Community Kitchen for their supper meal,” says Hearing Associates owner and audiologist, Stuart Trembath.

Dizziness, Imbalance and VNG Testing

DizzyWhat is videonystagmography (VNG)?

For those who struggle with their equilibrium and balance, VNG is a simple and painless diagnostic procedure that accurately determines the cause of dizziness.

The tests use a camera to track rapid eye movements in response to positional changes and visual cues. Neural pathways connect balance mechanisms of the inner ear to the eye, and quick eye movements are often a sign of a balance mechanism disorder.

Hearing Associates Offers the NEW Unitron Moxi Now

Moxi FamilyHearing Associates in Mason City, Iowa, understands that everyone has favorite sounds. Ones that make us smile, like birds chirping. Ones that we cherish, like the laughter of a loved one. That’s why we offer an array of state-of-the-art hearing aids from the top manufacturers worldwide, like Unitron. Our expertise, technology and care will bring you from silence to better hearing.

Hearing Associates is pleased to offer Unitron’s newest hearing aid, the Moxi Now. This device is both comfortable and powerful for the wearer. In fact, it’s the world’s smallest wireless receiver-in-the-canal (RIC) hearing aid. Despite its size, the hearing device is packed with features.

Aural Rehabilitation: What Is It and Does It Work?

Aural Rehabilitation

At Hearing Associates in Iowa, we’re ready to address your hearing health when you are. If we identify hearing loss during your testing, we’ll help you explore all of the options available to improve your communication skills.

There’s a common misconception that hearing aids are the “cure all” for hearing impairments. But, improved communication involves long-term rehabilitation in which hearing aids play a part.

When you enter our “Your Hearing Journey” aural rehab classes, you will set realistic goals, and know what to expect from both your hearing aids and your hearing aid provider. Remember, we’re just as committed and motivated as you are.

So, what is aural rehabilitation? See how our cutting-edge “Your Hearing Journey” program can enhance your communication, hearing aid adjustment period and overall well-being. 

Relieve Ototoxicity with Hearing Aids


Treating medical conditions without creating unwanted side effects – or new conditions altogether – is a delicate situation. And with so many drugs on the market, it’s important to be informed and aware of your course of therapy.

Ototoxicity – sometimes referred to as ear poisoning – results from exposure to drugs or chemicals that damage the inner ear or the vestibule-cochlea nerve. Common medicines that can cause hearing loss include a range of antibiotics, diuretics, chemotherapeutic agents and NSAIDs, as well as environmental chemicals and other substances, like lead, mercury and carbon monoxide.

Whether your medication regimen is temporary or long-term, it’s important to be aware of the signs of ototoxicity and get ahead of any potential problems. The audiologists at Hearing Associates – located in Mason City, Iowa, and Albert Lea, Minnesota – can help. Read on to find out how, or call 888.760.2032 to schedule your hearing evaluation.

Oticon’s Opn Solves the Restaurant Dilemma

OpnDevicehandOne of the most challenging social situations for those with hearing loss is dining in a restaurant, where background noise and multiple speakers compete for attention.

Traditional hearing aids address this problem by focusing on one speaker only and closing down other sounds – a process called directionality.

Oticon’s Opn hearing aid is a quantum leap forward. Opn uses the groundbreaking, rapid sound-processing platform Velox to enable wearers to follow conversations involving multiple speakers in complex sound environments.

The Velox platform is 50 times faster than previous hearing aid sound processing technology. It scans, analyzes and reacts to noise in any environment approximately 100 times per second. So, Opn wearers can enjoy an open sound experience in which surrounding sounds are available, but not overbearing or intrusive. Users also can quickly shift their attention and follow the sounds they want to hear.

The Oticon Opn makes hearing easier on the brain by:
• Increasing speech understanding by 30%
• Decreasing listening effort by 20%
• Improving conversation recall by 20%

A Race Towards Better Hearing

RacecarHearing is an important part of life, and many motorsport fans do not follow common hearing protection practices. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) states that a person can listen to a constant sound, up to a 90 decibel (dB) for 8 hours straight without any hearing damage. At 115 dB, you can listen to a constant sound safely for only 15 minutes. One race car at full throttle is approximately 130 dB echoing off of aluminum grandstands. Ear plugs and ear muffs are the best solution to protecting your hearing while at the racetrack.

We strive to be a part of the Southern Minnesota/Northern Iowa community and we are pleased to announce that Hearing Associates is one of the official sponsors of Levi Nielsen Motorsports.

Hearing Booth Renovations

hearing boothWe’ve been doing some remodeling at our main location in Mason City, Iowa. In a movement to make our office more handicap accessible, we made a few modifications to our hearing booth.

Our renovation removed the step, dropped the booth to ground level, and altered it to be wheelchair friendly. Although the modification was minor, it has opened new doors for our patients. We are now able to effortlessly provide a wide range of hearing tests to our patients with physical limitations.

As it says in our mission statement, “At Hearing Associates, P.C., our goal is to be your guide in your pursuit of better communication.

Welcome Dr.Jeffery King and Dr.Christine Heintskill

As we looked into the future, it was very important to us to find caring and skilled audiologists whose priority is to listen to you and team with you to meet your individual hearing health needs. We are so pleased to have found two talented audiologists who will uphold the high-quality service and tradition of excellence that our patients have appreciated. We are thrilled to announce the addition of Dr. Jeffrey King and Dr. Christine Heintskill to our team.

They both received their Audiology Degrees from Central Michigan University and completed their audiology residencies at the San Diego VA Healthcare System. Jeff and Christine are from the midwest and have returned because of their love for the people here. They have a lot to offer our practice and we look forward to working with them.

Holiday Traditions

At Hearing Associates in Mason City, Iowa, we take family time very seriously...especially during the holidays. One of the more important things we love to hear about are family traditions. Our receptionist, Pam DeRoy was more than happy to share her favorite Christmas tradition that has been going since she was a little girl.

Hearing Aid Battery Recycling Program


Don’t throw those batteries away!

Batteries contain materials that are both hazardous and recyclable. It’s good environmental stewardship to recycle them because you can recover their resources and keep contaminants out of the landfill.

The Landfill of North Iowa collects single use, rechargeable and automotive batteries from residents for free.

What happens to my batteries after I drop them off for recycling?

When your batteries are dropped off for recycling, they are sorted and safely secured until they can be sent to a facility for processing. From there, the batteries are broken down into their various components: plastic, rubber, acid and metals.

  • The plastic is melted and cut into pellets and used for new products.
  • The rubber cases are used as an additive in the smelting process.
  • Battery acid is neutralized, then broken down into water and a salt compound.
  • Metals — cadmium, cobalt, lead and nickel — are reclaimed and used for making new batteries, among other things.

Although batteries containing mercury are being discontinued, there are a few still out there.   We are a hearing aid battery drop off site. We recycle all hearing aid battery sizes and brands. Mercury or Zinc, just bring them into any of our offices, and we'll take care of them for you. Our environment is important to us.

For additional information, contact us today.



The 5 Minute Rule

A mere five minutes may give you an extra 2 to 7 days with your current hearing aid batteries.

With the help of his audiologist, hearing aid user, Ethan Manuell developed a study to see if waiting a few minutes longer increased battery life. What they discovered was waiting 5 minutes can increase the life span by up to 80%.

To meet Ethan, and learn more about the “5 Minute Rule”, watch the clip below.

Hearing Loss Humor

With the connections between serious diseases like Dementia and Diabetes, it’s important to take hearing loss seriously. However, it’s also important to keep a positive attitude about hearing loss as comedian Brian Regan does.

During his bit, Regan begins by talking about how he lost his hearing and transitions into his personal experience with tinnitus and his appointment at the audiologist’s office.

Not only is his perspective amusing, his experience can be shared between hearing loss patients across the world.  To hear his perspective for yourself, listen to the audio clip below.

Tips for Preventing Swimmer's Ear

School is out, suitcases are packed for summer vacations, and spending time in the water is just one of the perks of hot weather. But when you spend all day in a pool, lake, or ocean, you may come home with more than a sunburn.

Although it typically it drains by itself, water can become trapped in the canal and lead to an infection marked by redness, itchiness, swelling, and pain called Swimmer’s Ear.  

Swimmer’s ear is easily treated with antibacterial ear drops, but it’s also easily preventable. Below are a few tips from the Centers for Disease Control to help prevent an unnecessary doctor visit this summer.

Hearing Aid Pros and Cons

Choosing a hearing aid can be an intimidating process, especially with so many styles and options to pick from. By comparing all of your options and knowing the pros and cons of each style, the selection process gets easier.

Are you looking for a discreet hearing aid? Maybe size isn’t a factor, and you are looking for something with more power. From completely invisible hearing aid styles, to those that fit behind your ears, there is a perfect device out there with your name on it.

Check out the video below to learn more about the advantages and disadvantages of each hearing aid style.

Composing by Heartbeat

A medical historian, cardiologist and musicologist walk into a room...

It sounds like the set-up to a joke, but a team consisting of a medical historian, cardiologist and musicologist from the University of Michigan and University of Washington theorized that world-renowned composer Ludwig van Beethoven could have suffered from a cardiac arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat).

Why do they think that? They listened to his music.

Due to Beethoven’s notable deafness, it’s suggested that he was more aware of his heartbeat and used it as an internal metronome. To prove  that, the team examined the rhythm of several of Beethoven’s compositions, and read the tempos as if they were a “musical electrocardiogram.”

Winter Hearing Protection

Did you know cold weather requires extra protection for your hearing aids? Your ears aren’t the only thing compromised by winter temperatures.Follow these simple tips to help keep your hearing aids safe this winter.

• Set your hearing aids for noise reduction
Snow blowers and snowmobiles can produce sounds over 100 dB, so it’s important to make sure the memory settings on your hearing aids turn off the amplification features you normally use.

• Use earmuffs
Noise reduction earmuffs decrease sounds by as much as 30 dB, so they’re highly useful if you need to work outside with loud equipment and your hearing aids don’t have memory settings.

Ear Wax Snacks

Looking to make an interesting snack for the kids when they get home from school? Try serving up some Q-tips with ear wax.  These little gems are sure to grab their attention, and hold them over until dinner time.

Ear Wax Snacks

Assembly is easy and the ingredients are inexpensive.  Here’s what you need:

Protect Your Hearing Month

October is National Protect Your Hearing Month. Did you know hearing loss is the third most common health problem in the United States?

According to the American Academy of Audiology, approximately 36 million Americans suffer from hearing loss with more than half being under the age of 65.

 How can you tell if you have hearing loss? Here are a few signs to watch for:

Earache Remedies

You wake up with that pain, swelling and redness. You know immediately what it is —an earache. Yes, it's painful and annoying, but there is good news: Earaches usually clear up after a few days and many don’t require a visit to the doctor.

More good news: There are some safe home remedies you can use to relieve pain and clear up an earache. A word of warning, though: You’ll notice these remedies do not involve putting anything (other than ear drops) in your ear. If you find a home remedy that does, check with your doctor before trying it to avoid damaging your ears.

Use ear drops. Three to 5 drops a day can help fight infection, reduce inflammation, and relieve pain. Be sure to follow the directions on the bottle.

Drain your ears. You can do this in a variety of ways. Try eating spicy food, drinking lots of water, gargling with salt water, or propping your head up with a few extra pillows.

Safe Earwax Removal

ear candle-webContrary to its bad reputation, earwax (or cerumen), is actually very beneficial to your ears. It acts as a natural cleanser, removing debris as it moves out of the ear. It also contains both antibacterial and antifungal properties. However, when your ears produce too much cerumen, your ear canal can become clogged, which can result in earaches, infections and even hearing loss.

If your ears become plugged, going to a physician or audiologist is far safer than attempting to treat it on your own.

Using cotton tipped applicators can result in further impaction or even a ruptured ear drum.

Is Hearing Loss Robbing You of Your Favorite Sounds?

backyard bbqSummer is in full swing. You can feel it in the warm air and smell it in the breeze. But for many people, summer is most easily identified by certain sounds.

The song of the cicadas. Children laughing while splashing in water. The hum of the mower as neighbors tend to their lawns. Voices of family and friends at a backyard barbeque. Music at an outdoor concert.

Prevent Hearing Loss This Summer

It’s officially summer!

Studies show that people spend up to 63% more time outside during the warmer months. No surprise, really.

But you may not have considered one of the dangers of the summer season. Between lawnmowers, loud graduation parties, outdoor concerts and fireworks displays, your ears are subjected to many potentially damaging sounds during this time of year. Any noise above 85 decibels is considered dangerous. Look at how loud these common summertime sounds are:

    Summer Hearing Aid Care Tips

    Heat, humidity, perspiration and air conditioning can damage the delicate circuitry in your hearing aid.

    Now that warmer weather is here, we want to offer some tips for caring for your hearing aids during the summer months.

    • Keep them clean. Wipe down your hearing aids every night before bed. Earwax, sweat and other residue tends to build up during the day. Because hearing aids gather more bacteria with increased humidity, you may want to use an antimicrobial product every few days to keep your devices sanitized.

    Can You Identify the Signs of Communication Disorders?

    Have you heard? May is Better Hearing and Speech Month (BHSM). Designated by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association in 1927, BHSM was formed to raise awareness for hearing loss and speech disorder. Each year they offer a different campaign theme.

    This 2014 theme is “Communications Disorders are Treatable” and aims to help “Identify the Signs” of communication disorders, especially in children.

    Healthy Diet = Healthy Hearing

    Hippocrates said, “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.”

    That couldn’t be a more truthful statement. Food doesn’t just affect the appearance of our bodies it also affects the functions. Your hearing can be greatly impacted by the foods you eat. If decreasing your chances of hearing loss by eating delicious, healthy foods doesn’t sound like a win-win, I don’t know what does.

    Research Offers Hope in Reversing Noise-Induced Hearing Loss

    If you regularly read our blog posts or follow us on Facebook, you may have noticed that noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL), and how to prevent it, is a running theme. As they say, “An ounce of protection is worth a pound of cure.” Your ears are fragile; exposure to loud sounds often results in permanent hearing loss.

    Researchers from Stanford School of Medicine offer hope that it may not be permanent. They’ve discovered a possible “window for treatment” in their study with a mouse model. Loud sounds, once thought to permanently destroy the delicate cochlea, are now believed to damage the hair and nerve cells that send sound signals to the brain. If immediate treatment with anti-inflammatory medications is administered, the damage is limited.

    Preventing Noise-Induced Hearing Loss While Farming

    Did you know that farmers have the second-highest rate of noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL)? Only the construction industry is more dangerous to hearing health.
    NIHL is caused from repeated exposure to sounds louder than 85 decibels (dB). There aren't many tasks related to farming that don't involve being around loud machinery.

    Hear Better in the New Year

    Happy New Year!

    Around this time, everyone starts making promises to themselves. You might resolve to lose weight. Maybe this is the year you decide to stop smoking. Or maybe your resolution is smaller, like remembering to tell your kids you love them before leaving the house every day.

    All of those are great things to strive for this year. But you might be overlooking another important change.

    Cold Weather Tips for Hearing Aid Users

    With colder weather now upon us, we’d like to offer you some tips to keep your hearing aids operating at their best during the frigid winter months:

    •    Remember to keep extra batteries on hand and carry some with you when you’ll be away from home for any length of time.
    •    When you’re going to be outside, wear a hat, a headband or earmuffs to protect your hearing aids, and your ears, from exposure to moisture and cold air.
    •    When not in use, place your hearing aids in a dehumidifier to absorb any condensation that may have accumulated within your devices.
    •    Never place your hearing aids on or near a heater.

    How’s your hearing?

    October is National Audiology Awareness and National Protect Your Hearing Month. With that in mind, we’d like to offer some facts about hearing loss, its causes and symptoms and how to protect it from damage.

    •    Approximately 36 million Americans suffer from hearing loss.
    •    Hearing loss is the third most common health problem in the U.S.
    •    Three out of every 1,000 babies are born with hearing impairment.
    •    There are more males than females with hearing loss.

    Tips for New Hearing Aid Users

    So you just got hearing aids. You’re starting to adjust to your new world of sound.  You’ve been shown how to care for your new device, including how to insert and remove them, change the batteries, and clean them. But we’d like to offer a list of tips you may not have received from your provider:

    •    When you remove your hearing aids, store them in a safe place, out of reach of pets and children. Damage caused by pets is usually not covered by the warranty.  Swallowing hearing aid batteries, like all batteries, is a life-threatening emergency. By keeping your hearing aids in a secure place, away from animals and children, you can avoid accidents.
    •    Keep your devices away from water, including when bathing and swimming, in showers and hot tubs, as well as when you’re out in the rain and snow! If you’ll be out in wet weather, carry an umbrella, or a hat, ear muffs- anything to keep your hearing aids dry.
    •    Always be prepared: carry an extra set of batteries with you wherever you go.
    •    Keep hairstyling products away from your devices. Wait to put your hearing aids in until after the products are completely dry.
    •    Turn your hearing aids off when not in use. Unless you’re using a charging box, be sure to turn them off when you remove them.

    Understanding Your Degree of Hearing Loss

    There are many steps to improving your hearing health. The first one is determining the severity, or degree, of your hearing loss. This is measured by discovering your hearing threshold, the lowest volume, in decibels (dB) at which you can hear sounds. Your results are placed on an audiogram and may vary by pitch (frequency) and by ear. Our audiologists obtain this information through testing called basic comprehensive audiometry, just one of the testing methods we use to find the right solution for you.

    Hearing Aid Compatible Devices

    Just because you have hearing aids doesn’t mean you can’t fully enjoy one of the best pieces of technology on the market, the iPhone. The iPhone 4 and 5 are hearing aid compatible devices. Hearing aid compatible (HAC) ratings are used by the FCC to determine whether or not a phone/device meets the certain hearing aid compatibility standards. When considering an iPhone or other hearing aid compatible device, please keep these factors in mind:

    Enjoy Your Summer without Damaging Your Hearing

    Summer is in full swing, and one of the best ways for music lovers to enjoy the season is at an outdoor concert. But whether it’s rock, jazz, hip-hop, pop, or even a symphony performance, chances are it’s too loud.

    Sound levels above 85 decibels can contribute to noise-induced hearing loss, and a recent study measured the decibel levels at several musical performances at more than 100 decibles.

    Now, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go to concerts; just take some precautions to protect your hearing.

    Here are some tips:
    •    Sit in the back.  A front row seat right by the wall of speakers isn’t worth losing your hearing.
    •    Sit on the left or right. Sitting in the middle puts you right in the middle of the sound waves.
    •    Give yourself a break. If it’s a festival or more than one performance, take a walk and give your ears a bit of peace.
    •    Find out your hearing threshold. If prolonged listening causes ringing in your ears, it may be damaging. Reduce volume and exposure time.
    •   Use hearing protection. Ear plugs or special head phones can protect you from intense volume and prolonged exposure.

    At Hearing Associates, we offer custom made musicians’ plugs that are made specifically to allow you to hear all pitches and frequencies of music, but at a reduced volume. We also offer other custom-made hearing protection products.

    Schedule an appointment at our main office in in Mason City- or at any of our other locations in Iowa, or at our facility in Albert Lee, Minnesota.

    Summer Camps for Children and Teens with Hearing Loss

    “Life’s challenges are not suppose to paralyze you. They’re supposed to help you discover who you are” - Bernice Johnson Reagan

    As the summer approaches everyone is getting ready to enjoy the fun and sun. Summer camps offer great opportunities to learn, make new friends and, yes, even embrace and overcome challenges.

    There are summer camps and programs designed to help children and teens with hearing loss learn to communicate better while gaining a sense of pride.

    Hearing impairment summer camps provide an opportunity to experience the fun and activities of a traditional summer camp, while providing additional skills to those with hearing problems. Along with enjoying all the fun events, the campers develop a sense of self-reliance, enhance communications skills and strategies, and form life-long friendships with others who have the same disability. These special needs camps are supervised by trained professionals and certified instructors who instill a strong sense of self-confidence in the attendees. Some camps are even designed to include entire families.

    Here is a list of sites with information about summer camp availability, by state:

    Deaf Links

    Rochester Institute of Technology

    Listening and Spoken Language Knowledge Center

    At Hearing Associates, we know how important the sense of empowerment is, especially for younger people who are dealing with specific challenges. For more suggestions, please call us. We’re here to help, every step of the way.

    Tips for Hearing in Challenging Listening Situations

    Hearing aid technology has advanced tremendously in recent years, but one problem still remains for many users: dealing with background noise.

    Background noise is defined as any sound that interferes with your ability to hear and focus on the auditory signal you want to hear, and may include traffic, rustling papers, children laughing, clattering dishes, and multiple people speaking at the same time.

    There are certain steps you can take to make background noise more tolerable:

    Use devices with Digital Signal Processing (DSP).  These hearing aids are able to differentiate between speech and noise and can be programmed to reduce background noise. Most hearing aids sold today have this digital technology.
    Use two hearing aids instead of one. Scientific evidence indicates that speech perception in noisy listening situations is better with two hearing aids.
    Purchase hearing aids with directional microphones.  With this option, you can switch the hearing aid from picking up sounds from all directions to picking up sounds from the front. Many devices with newer technology do this automatically.

    Here are some strategies that will help you hear and communicate better:

    • Be honest, acknowledge your hearing loss and offer suggestions for others to aid you in hearing them.
    • Don’t hesitate to ask people to repeat themselves if you miss something.
    • When possible, suggest moving conversations to quieter places.
    • When attending a lecture or group event, arrive early and find a seat close to the speaker.

    Remember, at Hearing Associates, we’re here to help, every step of the way!

    Schedule your evaluation at our main office in Mason City or at any of our other practices in Iowa and Minnesota.

    Importance of Treating Hearing Loss Early

    Losing your hearing can be a frustrating and embarrassing experience, but allowing it to go untreated may cause other problems.

    A study of hearing-impaired adults, age 50 and older, showed that those with untreated hearing problems were more likely to suffer from depression, anxiety and paranoia than people who sought treatment for the condition.

    In addition to negatively affecting your relationships with loved ones, untreated hearing loss can lead to:

    • Loneliness and social isolation.
    • Poor job performance and decreased earning potential.
    • Emotional and mental problems, including the possibility of dementia.

    These are serious issues that can easily be prevented with early intervention. We can get you on the right track to hearing health as well as an improved quality of life. Please contact us to schedule your evaluation at one of our convenient locations today.

    The Challenges of Working in an Office with Hearing Loss

    Working in an office environment poses specific obstacles when you have hearing loss. Telephone communication, deciphering conversation from background noise, and missing out on important information during meetings are just a few of the challenges.

    Here are a few tips to help you succeed on the job.

    • Be open and honest with your supervisors and colleagues about your hearing loss.
    • Help your co-workers communicate with you by providing suggestions, such as making eye contact with you before beginning to speak; not covering their mouths with their hands when speaking so that you can read their lips, etc.
    • Find an ally. Develop a friendship with one or two associates who will make sure you don’t miss out on anything important.
    • Ask for help when you need it.

    Stay on top of your hearing loss with follow-up visits to your audiologist and routine maintenance of your hearing aids. And don't forget that the staff at Hearing Associates is here to help with your communication needs.

    Tinnitus: You Can Still Live Long and Prosper

    William Shatner battled alien threats during his long career on Star Trek, but the actor has been battling a real life threat, tinnitus, for years.

    Tinnitus manifests itself as ringing or noise in the ears or head. Although most of us have experienced that sensation, usually after concerts or other loud event, some people suffer from ongoing tinnitus. The condition affects sleep, stress, and quality of life.

    Shatner’s tinnitus is the result of filming a scene for Star Trek. The actor was too close to one of the on-set explosions and has been struggling with tinnitus ever since. After receiving help from the American Tinnitus Association, Shatner now regularly speaks out about his condition and urges others to seek treatment for tinnitus.

    Don’t let tinnitus rule your life: schedule a hearing evaluation today to get the help you need and deserve.

    Military Hearing Loss

    Although hearing loss affects individuals of all ages and from vastly different walks of life, there’s one group in particular with an alarmingly high risk of developing the condition: military personnel.

    The noise of loud equipment and vehicles, gunfire and roadside bombs are taking their toll on members of our armed forces, with over one million suffering from tinnitus and over 50,000 with hearing loss. While it’s important for active duty military personnel to practice hearing conservation, it’s also crucial for us to take care of these individuals and help them regain their hearing to show our appreciation of their sacrifice.

    The Cost of Hearing Loss

    Hearing loss takes the joy out of conversation and makes it difficult to maintain relationships and careers. It takes the joy out of conversation and social activities, but it could be taking even more than that.

    Studies have shown that untreated hearing loss can cost an individual up to $12,000 a year. The cost increases as time goes on through lost wages, promotions and opportunities as a result of an individual’s hearing loss.

    Take back your hearing and protect your wallet by scheduling a hearing screening today.


    Aural Rehabilitation

    Hearing JourneyAt Hearing Associates, we provide our patients with detailed information and answers to their questions about the degrees and effects of hearing loss. We also offer informative classes on many topics, like aural rehabilitation.

    Aural rehabilitation involves different therapies designed to help you live well with hearing issues. We’ll help you make the best use of your hearing aids, explore assistive listening devices, and take charge of your communication strategies.

    There is no cure for hearing loss.

    Even with the best advances in listening technologies, people with hearing difficulties face numerous communication challenges. Hearing loss can lead to isolation, frustration and fatigue for both the individual and their family members.

    But there is help. Our “Your Hearing Journey” classes provide support, education and information that will help you:

    • Network with others who share similar hearing experiences.
    • Have the opportunity to ask questions you might not have had at your fitting appointment.
    • Understand appropriate expectations of amplification.
    • Learn how to care for and maintain your hearing instruments.
    • Implement effective communication strategies.
    • Learn about environmental obstacles and how to overcome them.
    • Develop strategies to protect the hearing you still have.
    • Respect your hearing with annual audiological exams, regular hearing aid cleaning and ear canal checks at Hearing Associates.

    At Hearing Associates, you’re part of the team! “Your Hearing Journey” will equip you with the necessary tools to:

    Understand the hearing process: We cover topics like: how we hear, why we lose our hearing, how to protect our hearing, hearing wellness, concerns and care, communication strategies, and how to improve your hearing.

    Build your confidence: Whether you spend your time surrounded by people or in the quiet comfort of your home, hearing aids can greatly improve your quality of life. We’ll teach you how to care for these instruments, and show you simple communication techniques to improve your listening experience.

    Train your brain: As you wear your new hearing instruments daily, you will continue to get more acclimated to sounds you may have been missing for years. It is crucial to keep your hearing healthcare provider informed of your progress, so we can adjust your devices to keep up with your pace.

    “Your Hearing Journey” Class Schedule:

    Call 888.760.2032 to join the next class.

    We meet once a week for the three-week session, and you can choose which class works best for your schedule each week.

    Bring a support partner

    Improving communication between those with hearing loss and their loved ones is vital during the aural rehabilitation journey. At Hearing Associates, we encourage patients and their families to learn the ways to overcome challenges together, enhance your hearing world, and keep healthy communication going.

    These informational classes are designed to provide our patients and their families with the tools for preventing and managing hearing loss. 

    Your support partner will:

    • Offer another set of ears to receive the many details presented
    • Learn effective techniques to carry on more effortless conversation
    • Provide encouragement to you and those who care about you on how to better live with hearing loss

    The care team at Hearing Associates looks forward to guiding you and your family on your path to better hearing. For more information on our aural rehabilitation services, call 888.760.2032.

    Aural Rehabilitation

    Earwax Removal

    You probably know that it’s wrong to put a cotton swab in your ear, but do you do it anyway? There are better ways to deal with earwax, both at home and with the help of a medical professional.

    Risky Business

    The ear can easily be damaged with aggressive home cleaning. You should never put anything in your ears: not swabs, not hairpins, not a twist of fabric. These techniques can injure sensitive tissues and even rupture your eardrum.

    Putting anything in your ear tends to compact earwax—also called cerumen—leading to more hearing problems, not less.

    Understanding earwax

    It may be a surprise, but earwax is actually a good thing. It protects your ears from materials like dust and shedding skin cells. These particles are trapped by the wax and then are pushed out of the ear canal by jaw movement. Too little earwax can actually result in dry, uncomfortable ears.

    Professional cleaning

    Some people never need a professional cleaning. However, others with excessive earwax production or narrow ear canals benefit greatly from medical assessment and earwax removal. An impacted ear canal can be both a hearing problem and a source of pain or discomfort.

    A doctor should examine your ears when you experience:

    • Partial hearing loss
    • Ringing or noises in the ear (tinnitus)
    • Earache
    • A plugged feeling
    • Odor or discharge
    • Itching

    To remove earwax, a hearing specialist will use specialized instruments, a microscope, and suction. Special care needs to be taken if you have narrow ear canals, diabetes or a weak immune system.

    Approved Home Care

    After a professional cleaning, you can help keep your ears clean with the right methods. Home treatments to soften and remove wax include:

    • Oil or glycerin drops
    • Commercial ear drops 
    • Detergent drops (including hydrogen peroxide)
    • Irrigation
    • Syringing

    Irrigation should be done with solutions warmed to body temperature to prevent dizziness. If you suspect a perforated eardrum or have medical issues complicating ear cleaning, consult with your doctor instead.

    Don’t be tempted to try ear candles, which are not recommended for ear cleaning. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warns that these products can result in injuries.

    Excessive earwax is a common problem. If you repeatedly experience impacted earwax, periodic cleanings at Hearing Associates will prevent hearing problems and discomfort. Contact us today to schedule your appointment.

    Custom Hearing Protection

    Hearing Protection for HuntersAt Hearing Associates in Mason City, Iowa, and Albert Lea, Minnesota, we want to help prevent hearing loss by offering custom hearing protection products from Westone and Sound Gear.

    Hunting Ear Protection
    Hunters and shooters can amplify and protect their hearing without needing to change devices. With products from Sound Gear and Westone, your hearing protection devices are available in several different styles and colors.  Designed to amplify sounds within the safe hearing range, digital plugs automatically block noise once it exceeds 95dB.

    Custom Hearing Protection
    From work to play, custom ear molds can be worn whenever you might encounter loud situations. Designed for all day use, this form of hearing protection provides better defense and greater comfort than a store-bought plug. Custom ear molds also have the option for standard or digital protection.

    Musician Ear Plugs
    This type of hearing protection guards your ears and lets you know you’re playing at your best. The canal-style earplugs are sleek and virtually unnoticeable, but won’t alter your pitch or timbre -perfect for any musician or music lover.  

    custom hearing protectionCustom Earbuds
    Made to perfectly fit your ears, custom earbuds reduce background noise and deliver higher quality sound, eliminating the need to turn up your music to dangerous levels.

    Swim Molds 
    Molded to fit your unique ear shape, the customized fit keeps your ears dry while in the water. This form of hearing protection is typically used to prevent Swimmer’s Ear.  

    Musician’s and Hunter’s plugs, custom hearing protection, and ear buds require roughly two weeks to complete. Swim plugs however, have a much shorter processing time. Taking roughly 30 minutes to complete, the molds of your ear are taken during your appointment, and your finished swim plugs can leave the office when you do.

    At Hearing Associates in Mason City, Iowa, and Albert Lea, Minnesota we want to help prevent hearing loss by offering custom hearing protection products from Westone and Sound Gear.

    Hearing Aid Services

    At Hearing Associates, PC with locations in Mason City and northern Iowa, we accompany you on your journey to better hearing through:

    • Extensive testing.
    • Hearing Aid Battery Recycling.
    • Solution options including top of the line hearing aids.
    • Comprehensive follow-up care, which includes maintenance, cleaning and minor repairs to your hearing aids as well as teaching you how to care for them properly.

    After we’ve helped you determine which type of hearing aid is best for you, we measure your ears (if required) and order the devices. When your new hearing aids arrive in our office, we set an appointment for you to come in so that we can fit and program them according to the results of your tests, your needs, and your lifestyle.

    At this time, we'll also teach you how to program and clean your hearing aids, change the batteries and properly care for them. Knowing how to maintain your devices will extend their life and keep them performing at their best. We offer additional products that are useful in preserving your hearing aids.

    We encourage you to bring your hearing aids in quarterly so that we can check them as well as thoroughly clean them. If necessary we will replace certain components (such as tubing, battery doors, ear hooks, wax guards, filters, and screens). For your convenience, we offer daily walk-in hours from 11am –1pm for these services (free of charge to all patients who purchased their hearing aids from us). If you have programming needs, we ask that you schedule an appointment at any of our locations in northern Iowa, or at our facility in Albert Lea, Minnesota in the Mayo Clinic Health System as making those type of adjustments to your hearing aids may take more time.

    Because we know that the transition back into the world of sound can be overwhelming, we are committed to walking with you, every step of the way. We're happy to answer your questions and provide guidance as you adapt to your new hearing aids.

    Our professional staff at Hearing Associates, PC strives to offer you the utmost professional, comprehensive, and compassionate hearing health care in Mason City and the surrounding areas in northern Iowa and southern Minnesota.

    Patient Forms

    To ensure that your appointment goes smoothly, we ask that you please print off, review and fill out the following forms before your first visit to one of our practices.

    Thank you for choosing Hearing Associates, P.C. for your hearing needs. We look forward to working with you.

    Hearing Tests

    At Hearing Associates, P.C., we have the expertise and equipment to thoroughly examine your hearing and balance. We've been providing comprehensive hearing tests to patients in Mason City and northern Iowa since 1987. There’s no grade, per se, but treating your hearing loss will greatly improve your quality of life.

    • Basic Comprehensive Audiometry: Determines the degree of hearing loss using pure tones and word recognition testing.
    • Otoacoustic Emission (OAE) testing: Assesses the functioning of the outer hair cells of the cochlea. OAEs are often used for infants or patients who are unable to respond to basic comprehensive audiometry.
    • Auditory Brainstem Response Audiometry (ABR): Checks the functionality of the auditory nerve from the cochlea to the brainstem and also determines the auditory threshold.
    • Auditory Steady State Evoked Responses (ASSR): Evokes a response, which is used to objectively determine audiometric thresholds.
    • Acoustic Immitance Testing (tympanograms, acoustic reflex testing): determines Eustachian tube functionality and is often used to find out if there is fluid behind the eardrum.
    • Visual Reinforcement Audiometry: Usually used with toddlers, this hearing test uses a visual display that provides positive reinforcement for looking for the sound source.
    • Conditioned Play Audiometry: This hearing test, usually for young children, uses toys, blocks, cards or other objects when responding to sounds.
    • Videonystagmography Test (VNG): This form of testing is used to determine if an inner ear disease may be causing a balance or dizziness problem. The test consists of 4 main parts: Occulary Mobility, Optokinetic Nystagmus, Positional Nystagmus and Caloric Testing. Learn more here.
    • Real Ear Hearing Aid Test: Used to validate hearing aid fittings by ensuring proper audibility.
    • 2CC Hearing Aid Test: A variety of tests that determine the functionality of hearing aids, including output, gain and battery drain.

    If you suspect you may have hearing loss, don't wait. Schedule an appointment for complete hearing tests, including balance testing, at our main office in Mason City, or at any of our other locations throughout northern Iowa and southern Minnesota. We look forward to serving you.

    Hearing Services

    At Hearing Associates, we know that treating hearing loss requires a comprehensive approach. That’s why we offer a wide range of patient-centered audiology services to residents in Mason City and the surrounding areas in northern Iowa.

    Our goal is to improve your hearing and your quality of life through the following audiology services:

    • In-depth diagnostic hearing testing and evaluations – We offer extensive testing to patients ranging from infants to seniors, in order to diagnose and treat your unique hearing loss.
    • Hearing device services, including fitting, maintenance, and repair – We will make sure your new hearing devices are fitted and programmed to your specific needs. In order to keep your devices working at their best, we will teach you how to care for them. We also suggest you bring them into one of our offices for regular cleaning and, if needed, repair.
    • Hearing aid product variety – After we evaluate your hearing and identify your concerns and needs, concerns we will discuss your options and recommend the type of hearing devices we believe will be most beneficial for you. We encourage you to ask questions and go over all the different styles, technology, and brands before making your decision. 
    • Additional hearing products and noise protection – In addition to a wide range of hearing aids, we also offer batteries, dryers, and other products to help you properly care for your devices. Ask about assistive listening devices (ALDs) including amplified phones and FM Systems, as well as custom hearing protection products, such as musicians’ plugs, and swimmers' plugs. We also offer custom hearing protection.
    • Earwax removal –To remove earwax, a hearing specialist will use specialized instruments, a microscope, and suction. Special care needs to be taken if you have narrow ear canals, diabetes or a weak immune system.
    • Balance testing – We provide diagnostic testing procedures to help identify and treat balance problems and dizziness.
    • Aural rehabilitation – These informational classes are designed to provide our patients and their families with the tools for preventing and managing hearing loss. Aural rehabilitation involves different therapies designed to help you live well with hearing issues. We’ll help you make the best use of your hearing devices, explore assistive listening devices, and take charge of your communication strategies.
    • Ongoing consultation – There is often a transition period after getting new hearing devices as your ears and your brain adjusts to hearing the sounds you’ve been missing. We encourage you to ask questions so that we can assist you during this time. You can also come to us for accurate and reliable information about audiology, hearing loss, hearing devices, as well as hearing and balance testing. Stay up-to-date on the latest news at Hearing Associates and check out our blog and videos for educational information to improve your hearing health. Stay connected to us via our newsletter, Facebook, TwitterLinkedIn,  and Youtube channel.

    We’ve proudly been providing friendly, professional hearing health care to patients in northern Iowa and southern Minnesota since 1987. Our main office is still in Mason City, but we have expanded, adding Audiology outreach clinics Albert Lea, Britt, Hampton, Cresco, Iowa Falls, New Hampton and Osage.

    Read more about our services!

    You can expect courteous service, thorough follow-up care, and a lasting commitment to your satisfaction at all of our locations.

    Schedule your appointment today!

    Hearing Self-test

    Nearly 38 million Americans live with hearing loss, so it's important to know that you're not alone. Despite this statistic, on average, people wait 7 years before seeking help.

    No matter if it's mild, moderate, or severe, your hearing loss could be putting your health in danger. From dementia to increased fall risk, getting treatment early can decrease your need to worry about yourself or your loved ones. Suspect you may be one of the 38 million?

    Take the test below and see for yourself.

    Almost Always
    Half the time
    I have a problem hearing over the phone.
    I have trouble following the conversation when two or more people are talking at the same time.
    People complain that I turn the TV volume too high.
    I have to strain to understand conversations.
    I have trouble hearing conversations in a noisy background such as a party.
    I miss hearing some common sounds like the phone or doorbell ring.
    I get confused about where sounds come from.
    I misunderstand some words in a sentence and need to ask people to repeat them.
    I especially have trouble understanding the speech of women and children.
    I have worked in noisy environments.
    Many people mumble when they talk.
    People get annoyed because I misunderstand what is being said.
    I misunderstand what others are saying and make inappropriate responses.
    I avoid social activities because I cannot hear well and fear that I'll reply improperly.
    To be answered by a family member :
    Do you think this person has a hearing loss?
    Do you have a blood relative with hearing loss?


    Your Score    
    What does this mean?
    Score Analysis
    0-5 You're hearing is good
    6-9 Suggest a hearing evaluation
    10 and above Strongly recommend a hearing evaluation
      If you scored above 5, we suggest that you receive a hearing test. If you'd like to receive more information or to schedule an appointment, please contact our Mason City, Iowa office today.

    On average, people wait 7 years before seeking help. 


    Educational Videos

    Sometimes it can be hard to find accurate and reliable information about audiology, hearing health, hearing loss and hearing aids. That’s why we provided these videos to help you understand more about hearing.

    How To: Change the Wax Guard Filter

    Your ear canal produces ear wax which may clog up the earpiece. Ear wax is one of the main causes of problems in hearing aids. Most hearing aids come with a filter or other device to stop wax getting into the hearing aids. Use the wax protection system and tools to clean away any accumulated wax each day. Consult your hearing care professional about the specific wax protection system in your hearing aids and how it can be replaced.

    Visit Oticon for more information. 


    How To: Replacing a Hearing Aid Battery

    Use the magnetic end to remove and insert batteries. If there is any moisture on the battery surface, it should be wiped off before use. When you change the battery, it will take a few seconds before the battery begins to work.

    How To: Turn a Hearing Aid On and Off

    Watch this video for a visual guide on how to turn your hearing aid on and off. 

    How To: Cleaning a Hearing Aid

    Keeping your hearing aids clean is crucial to ensuring a long life for your devices.When preparing your cleaning area, it’s important to keep the following tips in mind:

    • Make sure your hands are clean and dry before handling your aids.
    • Don’t use water or other cleaning fluids like alcohol, as they can ruin your hearing aids.
    • Make sure you’re holding your hearing aids over a soft surface. This reduces the risk of damage if they are dropped.

    Visit Healthy Hearing for more information: 


    Floyd County Medical Center

    Formerly Cedar Vallery Hearing Services, Hearing Associates PC. took over the practice from Doug Vogelson Au. D. We offer comprehensive, patient-centered audiology services to patients in Charles City, Iowa and the surrounding areas.


    (800) 621-6424


    (641) 494-5185


     8AM to 5PM Thursday and Friday


    Jeffrey King


    Hearing Aid Brands



    Floyd County Medical Center

    800 11th Street

    Charles City, Iowa 50616

    Franklin General Hospital


    (800) 621-6424


    (641) 494-5185


    2nd and 4th Thursday of every month 8 AM to 5 PM


    Stuart Trembath

    Stuart Trembath


    1720 Central Avenue East
    Hampton, IA 50441


    Hancock County Health System


    (800) 621-6424


    (641) 494-5185


    2nd and 4th Wednesday of every month 8 AM to 12 PM


    Rachel Dolezal
    Rachel Dolezal


    532 1st Street NW
    Britt, IA 50423


    Hansen Family Hospital


    (800) 621-6424


    (641) 494-5185


    2nd, 4th, and 5th Tuesday of every month 8 AM to 5 PM

    Every other Monday 8 AM to 5 PM

    Hearing Aid Brands



    Stuart Trembath
    Stuart Trembath


    920 S. Oak St.
    Iowa Falls, IA 50126


    Main Office

    At Hearing Associates PC, we offer comprehensive, patient-centered audiology services to patients in Mason City, Iowa and the surrounding areas.


    (800) 621-6424


    (641) 494-5185


    Monday - Friday 7AM to 5PM


    Stuart Trembath Dr. Tanya Harper Rowe Rachel Dolezal Christine Heinskill    
    Stuart Trembath tanya bio rachael Christine    
    Jeffrey King Carmen Wickering Jacqueline Keech      
    jeff Carmen Jacqueline      


    In addition to extensive hearing evaluations, we provide personalized solutions, including the prescription of hearing aids. We carry a wide variety of hearing aids from the best manufacturers in the industry. We will fit, program, clean your hearing aids and even perform minor repairs on-site. Other audiology services include the identification and treatment of dizziness and balance disorders. We also carry custom hearing protection products.

    For comprehensive, compassionate hearing health care, count on the experts at Hearing Associates, PC. Our main office is located at 250 South Crescent Street, Suite 100 near Mercy Medical Center in Mason City, Iowa.

    Hearing Aid Brands



    250 South Crescent Drive, Suite 100
    Mason City, IA 50401


    Mayo Clinic Health Systems- Albert Lea


    (507) 377-4805


    Monday - Friday 8 AM to 5 PM


            Stuart Trembath         Dr. Tanya Harper Rowe         Christine Heinskill
    Stuart Trembath tanya Christine

    Hearing Aid Brands



    Visit our Albert Lea, Minnesota audiology office for all your hearing healthcare need. Our popular services include diagnostic testing, and hearing aid technology.


    404 West Fountain Street
    Albert Lea, MN 56007


    Mercy Medical Center- New Hampton


    (800) 621-6424


    (641) 494-5185


    1st and 3rd Monday of every month 8 AM to 5 PM


    Jeffrey King



    308 North Maple Avenue
    New Hampton, IA 50659


    Mitchell County Regional Health Center


    (800) 621-6424


    (641) 494-5185


    1st, 3rd, and 5th Thursday of every month 8 AM to 5 PM


    Rachael Dolezal
    Rachael Dolezal


    616 North 8th Street
    Osage, IA 50461


    Regional Health Services of Howard County


    (800) 621-6424


    (641) 494-5185


    1st, 3rd, and 5th Tuesday of every month 8 AM to 3:30 PM


    Rachael Dolezal

    Rachael Dolezal


    235 8th Avenue West
    Cresco, IA 52136



    Careers at Hearing Associates

    At Hearing Associates P.C., we’ve been providing patients with friendly, expert audiology services since 1987. We are dedicated to helping our patients improve their quality of life through better hearing.  

    We have developed new opportunities to join our team at Hearing Associates P.C., as we continue to grow. Our main office is in Mason City,inside the Mason City Clinic. We also see patients at our audiology outreach clinics in Albert Lea, Britt, Charles City, Cresco, Hampton, Iowa Falls, New Hampton, and Osage in northern Iowa and southern Minnesota.

    To explore employment opportunities with Hearing Associates PC, please call us at 888-760-2032.


    Mason City, IA

    Full Time | Audiology Private Practice

    We are a growing hearing healthcare private practice in Mason City, Iowa and currently seek an Audiologist who is driven, self-motivated, and passionate about helping patients hear well again. The ideal candidate must be strong clinically and have the ability to effectively counsel while building patient rapport. If you are open to learning new fitting processes that are designed for today’s educated consumer in a rapidly changing marketplace and desire access to industry leading resources to ensure you are providing high-quality instruments and services to your patients, then please contact us today!




    At Hearing Associates, P.C., we’ve been providing patients in Albert Lea, Minnesota, Mason City, and the surrounding communities in northern Iowa with friendly, expert audiology services since 1987. We’re dedicated to helping you improve your quality of life through better hearing.

    We understand that for many, facing hearing loss can be intimidating. At Hearing Associates, we also know that better hearing leads to a better life. That’s why we’re committed to getting you back in the conversation so you can enjoy your favorite sounds again.

    Hearing Associates brings readers in our community the latest news and facts from the world of hearing. Visit frequently to keep up with this ever-changing resource. Our blognewsletters, videos and Facebook keep you connected to healthy hearing. We also offer events and classes that help educate and assist with improving


     Photo Improving Lives In Our Community article

    Helping people hear better isn’t the only way we help change lives. All summer long we have put our efforts towards giving back to organizations within the community. Throughout May and June, we put our efforts towards helping The Humane Society of North Iowa. The Humane Society operates an animal adoption shelter located in Mason City. We donated $20 per appointment and we raised $5,245.

    “We are amazed by and grateful for such a generous donation from our friends at Hearing Associates. As a non-profit animal shelter, we rely on donations like this to help us provide food, shelter, and medical care to the hundreds of displaced and homeless animals that rely on us each year. We appreciate the efforts and support from everyone at Hearing Associates. Thank you,” Sybil Soukup, Executive Director, Humane Society of North Iowa.

    It felt good to write that check, but then we were on to the next. Shortly after, we were approached by the wonderful founders from My Happy Haven to be a sponsor. Our hearts went out to their organization and their cause, so we started our collection. We took a portion of all hearing aid sales during the month of July and August to help them provide beautiful bedroom makeovers for women with cancer.

    My Happy Haven gathers volunteers and sponsors to build sanctuaries so that the people they help will have a place to relax and heal from the challenges of their health. You may have heard of My Happy Place, the sister organization to My Happy Haven, that focuses on makeover projects for children.

    We love helping to improve lives; whether that’s by bettering someone’s hearing, helping to provide a comfortable haven, or making it possible for a furry friend to find it’s forever home. We try to give back as much as we can, so check in often so see what we are up to and feel free to help us contribute to these amazing causes.  

    Reach out to us by phone at 888.760.2032 or contact us online.

    Physician Resources

    Physician FAQ

    What patient care will be provided?

    At Hearing Associates, we strive to deliver outstanding value through our custom treatment plans for each patient. Whether it is managing tinnitus symptoms, hearing loss, or balance issues, we will recommend a treatment plan that best fit the lifestyle and needs of the patient. All of our providers are committed to patient satisfaction, continuing education, and exceptional service. This commitment has kept Hearing Associates at the top of our industry since 1987.

    What services are currently offered?

    Hearing Associates offers complete audiological services, including hearing evaluations, tympanometry, hearing aid assessment, hearing aid fitting, and many other services. We pride ourselves in our program “Your Hearing Journey.”  Throughout these classes, our team will work with patients, and their families, on the implications of hearing loss and how best to communicate. 

    What is the difference between an Audiologist and an ENT?

    An ear, nose, and throat (ENT) doctor’s main focus is the physical properties of the ear. The ENT can diagnose and offer treatment options such as surgery or medication when appropriate. An Audiologist is a licensed health care professional who diagnoses hearing loss, balance problems and vestibular system conditions of the ear, as well as prevent and manage these conditions. The audiologist can provide the needed information to the ENT that allows them to decide what medical or surgical treatment option may be best. The audiologist is the professional most qualified for assessing, fitting, and following up with the hearing aid candidate.

    Will I be given the results for my patient?

    Patients of Hearing Associates receive a comprehensive report showing the results and recommendations. We can submit these reports via fax, email, or mail to the referring physicians.

    What insurance do you accept?

    Click here to view our complete list of insurances accepted.

    What finance options are available?

    Hearing Associates has partnered with Wells Fargo for financing options to those individuals who qualify. Click here to learn more.

    Helping Your Patients with Hearing Loss

    Tips for Physicians, Nurse Practitioners and Medical Office Staff

    Creating the Best Environment for Communication:

    • Reduce the background noise (music, television, etc.)
    • Face your patient directly when speaking to them.
    • Stay at eye/ear level with the patient when talking with them
    • Stand no more than four feet away from your patient.

     Things You Can Do:

    • Before you speak, get the patients attention.
    • Do not adjust your volume. A raised voice can sound distorted, making it even more difficult to understand.
    • Do not cover your face while you are talking.

    If your patient is having difficulty understanding something you are saying, rephrase the sentence.  It is also a good idea to provide written information when possible.

    Things to Understand about Hearing Technology:

    Hearing technology takes time and practice to become accustomed to. Your patients will need time to learn about their device and finding the settings that work best for them. Hearing sounds that they’ve missed for months (or years) again will take an adjustment period.

    While hearing devices can help amplify sounds, nothing can restore the damage that has caused permanent, sensorineural hearing loss. Today’s digital hearing devices greatly help in compensating for the hearing loss, but they do not totally correct the ability to hear and understand speech.

    When to Refer

    Referring Patients to Hearing Associates

    Hearing Associates provides audiological services for everyone: from small children to seniors.

    Good patient referral examples include patients who:

    A quick guide on when to refer your patients to an audiologist or to an ENT:

    • Known need for hearing aid(s)
    • Foreign body in ear
    • Family history of hearing loss
    • Diminished hearing in one ear
    • Complaint of inability to hear
    • Noise Exposure
    • Monitoring for ototoxicity

    As audiologists, it’s our role to measure, diagnose, and manage the patient’s hearing loss. If necessary, we will enlist an otolaryngologist to assist with the diagnosis of the etiology of the ear or hearing disorder.

    Throughout the years, Hearing Associates has worked closely with the ENT Clinic at The Mason City Clinic serving Mercy North Iowa Hospital, Mason City. The staff of Mason City ENT Clinic continue to be an integral part of sharing the care for mutual patients.