By LeeAnn Teagno Photo by Melissa Lawson, Bizzzeybee Photography
Marty Wood has a passion for clear, crisp hearing. The owner of Zounds of Fishers, a hearing center that opened this past June in Fishers, Wood knows personally of the struggles that hearing loss can cause. Wood, who started his profession in engineering and construction 38 years ago, decided it was time for something different. He wanted to help others hear better and he couldn’t be happier — not only with his career move, but also because he’s a satisfied Zounds customer.
“I worked in construction, rode motorcycles, enjoyed woodworking and any number of other loud activities,” says Wood. “It had taken a toll on my hearing.”
Wood got his hearing tested after he noticed that people often had to repeat things to him and that he had to keep turning up his TV’s volume. Years of being around heavy machinery and loud noises led to his hearing loss.
Wood advised that, while he understands hearing aids are often viewed as something only used by senior citizens, everyone over age 25 should have their hearing tested once every five years at the very least — and more often for those who are seniors.
“With all the technology out there — cellphones, ear buds and all the devices we place close to our ears — hearing loss is reaching epic proportions, even in younger folks,” he explained. “If someone has hearing loss, it’s best to know it and address it early for two reasons. First, the younger you are the more readily you tend to adapt to something new like the use of a hearing aid, and second, so that any hearing loss can be addressed before it has been damaged so severely that they cannot be properly helped.”
Wood said his customers have had nothing but praise for the innovative hearing aids.
“They come in because they’re tired of changing batteries and experiencing problems with their traditional hearing aids. Once they try our aids, they’re sold. They love the convenience of them and the fact that they just work better in general.”
So what makes the hearing aids that Zounds offers different from others? First of all, they’re rechargeable. The aids can run 18 or more hours on a charge, so there’s no inconvenient changing of batteries. They also have a convenient remote control so the user doesn’t need to touch the aids to adjust them. Of course, the price tag — $2,000 to $3,000 — is attractive too, as comparable aids sell for between $5,000 and $8,000.
The hearing aids also address mild to severe hearing loss. They don’t just make things louder but rather focus on where the customer needs them most, whether high-, middle- or low-frequency ranges. They work so efficiently that many of Wood’s customers say they hear sounds they forgot even existed.
“I had a customer tell me he thought his car had a problem when he heard the turn signal for the first time in years,” says Wood. “People forget what things sound like, and when they hear them again, they’re amazed.”
Wood says that to have their hearing tested, customers typically make an appointment. Zounds offers free and comprehensive hearing consultations, which take about an hour to complete. Once complete, customer’s audiogram, which is a graphical readout that explains what they hear and how well they hear it, is thoroughly reviewed. If the audiogram results warrant hearing help, a certified hearing specialist explains the available options in hearing aids, taking as much time as customers need to understand how to use hearing aids and answering any questions they might have.
Wood says it’s that personal touch that really sets Zounds apart on a customer service level.
“We know that when our customers need a hearing aid, it needs to meet or exceed their needs. The only way we can do that is through an in-depth assessment of each customer’s lifestyle. It’s not just about hearing — it’s about hearing right,” says Wood. “Typically, a very active person needs different care than a person who’s not so active, so we work to really get to know our customers because we want them to be completely satisfied.”
Wood added that customers get their hearing aids on the day they come in for their hearing evaluation, if they should need them. The aids are stocked in the office.
Even those who don’t need hearing aids should protect their hearing, says Wood. He recommends hearing protection whenever you’re exposed to loud noise or extreme low or high frequencies.
“Of course, preventing hearing loss is ideal,” he explained. “But when a hearing aid is needed, our clients really enjoy the ease of use and efficiency of the hearing aids at Zounds.”
Zounds is located at 11852 Allisonville Road. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call 317-608-1310.