Choosing the right solution for you is our main concern. There are a lot of options out there and it can be very difficult to sift through all the information. Some OTC hearing devices can do more harm than good if not applied properly.

We have compiled a list of the main points to consider if you suspect your hearing is diminishing.

Scheduling a hearing assessment is the first step in diagnosing any hearing deficiencies.



  • Cheaper – OTC devices range in price but overall they are less expensive than prescribed hearing aids. They are meant for minor hearing loss and don’t take into account any existing medical conditions.
  • Mild Cases – Typically an OTC is aimed at people who have just begun to see a decline in their hearing. As an amplification tool, an OTC can be advantageous to someone who only needs a small amount of assistance.


  • Inconsistent – If you have already purchased an OTC and were not happy with the results we don’t want this to affect your opinion of traditional hearing aids. OTCs are stock products and made with a “one-size-fits-all” mentality. If this describes your situation please bring your OTC into one of our offices and our professional staff can have a look and provide honest feedback.
  • Testing – There are minimal resources when trying to find the right OTC for you. They do not provide individual testing and therefore you may end up with a device that is not specifically catered to your needs.
  • Harmful – In some extreme cases, having the wrong OTC can actually do more harm than good. There may be issues with the volume or background noise canceling that could lead to further and more debilitating problems. Depending on your previous condition, an OTC could create wax impact or canal damage as well.

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  • Individual Examination – With each hearing aid, we test and fit our patients specifically to their needs and expectations. We work with our patients to first identify the leading problem and then correctly diagnose and treat the issue. By doing so we are able to track and monitor our patient’s progress and make necessary adjustments as needed.
  • Quality – Traditional hearing aids have been around for a long time. With this experience, we can fine-tune the settings to address the patient’s specific needs. Increased volume and reducing background noise are two things that a traditional hearing aid will improve vastly compared to an OTC. While OTCs claim to solve this problem, it varies greatly from patient to patient.
  • Insurance Coverage – In some cases, your hearing needs may be covered by your insurance company. This will greatly reduce the cost of your hearing aid and may even make it cheaper than any OTC.
  • Complete Service Coverage – Your hearing aid costs also cover a high level of attention to detail that comes with your hearing aid. With continued care, a tailored approach, and full device support, your audiologist provides comprehensive service.
  • Follow Up – Our staff is always ready and willing to assist. If you are experiencing problems with your hearing aid or need to make adjustments just come into one of our offices and we’ll be happy to help.


  • Cost – If your insurance does not cover hearing aids then the cost can be higher than that of an OTC but not in all cases.

To find out which is the best course of action for you, schedule a hearing assessment and we will help navigate through all the information to find the best solution for you.

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Dr. Melissa Segev & Dr. Briana Bruno Holtan

As the co-owners of Audiology Associates, Inc. Dr. Melissa Segev and Dr. Briana Bruno Holtan have over 35 years of combined experience caring for the hearing health of tens of thousands of people across Maryland. Trusted by local physicans and organizations, they are the experts that many turn to for audiological advice, guidance and support.