Our Hearing Loss Services

Hearing Loss

An estimated 48 million Americans have some amount of hearing loss. In children, hearing problems can affect the ability to develop spoken language. In adults, hearing loss can create problems with social interaction and work productivity. Only 1 in 5 people who would benefit from a hearing aid actually uses one.

Naugatuck Valley ENT offers a full audiology team comprised of licensed, certified, and experienced audiologists and a certified OTO-tech/balance specialist. Please contact Naugatuck Valley ENT at (203) 578-4630 to set up a hearing aid appointment.

What is Hearing Loss?
Hearing loss is the partial or total inability to hear. Hearing loss may be present at birth or developed anytime afterward. Hearing loss may occur in one ear or both ears and can be temporary or permanent. Hearing loss is defined when a person is unable to hear 25 decibels in at least one ear after testing. Hearing loss can be categorized as mild (25 to 40 dB), moderate (41 to 55 dB), moderate-severe (56 to 70 dB), severe (71 to 90 dB), or profound (greater than 90 dB). There are three main types of hearing loss: sensorineural hearing loss, conductive hearing loss,  and mixed hearing loss.

  • Sensorineural Hearing Loss: Permanent damage either to the tiny hair cells in your inner ear (known as stereocilia), or to the nerve pathways that lead from your inner ear to the brain. Sensorineural hearing loss is the far more common type of hearing loss, affecting roughly 9 out of 10 people with hearing loss.
  • Conductive Hearing Loss: When sounds cannot get through the outer and middle ear. Soft sounds can be hard to hear while louder sounds may be muffled. Treatments of medicine or surgery can sometimes fix conductive hearing loss.
  • Mixed Hearing Loss: This occurs when an individual has both sensorineural hearing loss and conductive hearing loss. There maybe damage in the outer ear, the middle ear, the inner ear or in the nerve pathway to the brain.

Hearing Loss Treatments
If you are experiencing hearing loss symptoms, our Audiologists can help you resolve or at least mitigate the issues. Our recommended treatment depends on the underlying cause and severity of your hearing loss.

  • Hearing Aids: A hearing aid can mitigate your hearing loss if the damage is in your inner ear. One of our audiologist can discuss with you the potential benefits of a hearing aid and expertly fit you with a hearing aid device.
  • Removing Earwax Blockage: This blockage is a reversible cause of hearing loss. Earwax can build up in the ear canal, especially after an illness. We can remove earwax painlessly using suction or one of specialty tools.
  • Cochlear Implants: A cochlear implant bypasses damaged section of your inner ear and directly stimulates the hearing nerve. We recommend this treatment for patients who have severe hearing loss and are not getting any benefit from conventional hearing aids.
  • Surgical Procedures: Surgery can be option for hearing loss.

Our Audiologists

Michelle R. Gotay, M.S. Smaller

Michelle R. Gotay, M.S.

Ms. Gotay received her undergraduate degree Summa Cum Laude from the State University of New York at Cortland. She completed her Master of Science Cum Laude in Audiology from Syracuse University.

Caitlin M. Kishore, Au.D - Naugatuck Valley ENT

Caitlin M. Kishore, Au.D.

Caitlin received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Connecticut and her doctorate of audiology from Bloomsburg University.