Dr. Wendy Halsey-Richardson is the owner and practicing audiologist of Chattanooga's Healthy Hearing located at 9298 Apison Pike in Ooltewah.
"I've been in the field for 22 years, and we see patients ages birth to 100-plus," she said of her practice, which is now in its seventh year at its current location.
Dr. Halsey-Richardson diagnoses and treats hearing loss from every gamut of the spectrum, including offering screenings for newborns to make sure hearing loss is normal at birth, to fitting hearing aids for baby boomers.
"I picked this location because this is my community and I really want to be a business owner that relates to others in the community," she said. "We try to give back as well as service the folks who live here."
One such instance of giving back is the business's "gift of hearing" during the holiday season. Dr. Halsey-Richardson extends an offer to locals in need of hearing aids to submit written essays stating why they need hearing assistance and offers the winner a free set of hearing aids. "We want to help someone through this program who cannot get help anywhere else," she said. "That's just one thing we do, and we may do something different this year."
Being well acquainted with healthcare, Dr. Halsey-Richardson made the decision to get her degree in audiology and completed eight years of training. She specializes in hearing loss and can diagnose whether patients have a medical condition that needs to be treated elsewhere or whether they have typical hearing loss and need to be fitted for proper hearing aids.
When it comes to an area of focus, Dr. Halsey-Richardson said she has a great success rate of fitting difficult-to-fit patients with the right hearing aids.
"Many people think that they just have to buy a hearing aid and that's it, when that's not the case," she explained. "It takes a minimum of two to three follow-up visits to get them acquainted with their hearing aids, and we do a great job of that."
During the first visit, patients are physically fit with their hearing aids and shown how to use and care for them. From there, they get into basic programming of the device, based on the patient's hearing test, and are then sent home to use the device for a two-week period in their own environment.
"When they come back, they report what worked and what didn't and I tune them to the specifics they need. We can also determine if they need an accessory like a remote control or Bluetooth," Dr. Halsey-Richardson said.
She said she loves working with people and does everything she can to make them feel at ease. "I love the diversity of patients I get to work with in this practice," she said. "I love kids and working with them, and I'm happy to help people find the right aid for their lifestyle." <br/.
When it comes to technology, Dr. Halsey-Richardson can help there too. From the iPhone app for hearing aids to ways to connect them to other smart phones, she leaves no stone unturned in making sure her patients have the right devices and accessories to help combat their hearing loss and keep up with their lifestyle.
Dr. Halsey-Richardson is taking new patients and accepts most insurances. Her office also offers financing.
"People are welcome to call ahead of time and ask basic questions before setting up an appointment, or we can schedule a free consultation," she added.
Chattanooga's Healthy Hearing is open Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call 423-648-4232, visit chattanoogashealthyhearing.com or like "Chattanooga's Healthy Hearing" on Facebook.