COVID Guidelines

Posts By: Chris Wielinski

COVID Guidelines

It is our intention that  Ecoutez will remain open to serve our patients’ hearing needs because we know that hearing is essential healthcare.  However, like many offices, we are instituting regulations to ensure patients, as well as audiologists and staff, safety, and wellbeing.

In addition to an increase in regular, disinfectant cleaning, we require the following.

  • If you are sick (or think you are sick); have a fever; have traveled to any of the coronavirus “hot spots,” such as China, South Korea, Iran, Italy, New York City, San Francisco, etc; or been exposed to someone with coronavirus, please do not come into the office.  If these conditions apply to you and you have an appointment, please call to reschedule.
  • We will refrain from shaking your hand.  Please accept our nod or hand raise as a welcome.  
  • If you need to come inside, or have an appointment, you’re welcome to come in while wearing a mask only.
  • Our staff will be wearing gloves when we are cleaning your hearing aids.  If you need us to help you with your cell phone, we will guide you through the process and refrain from touching your phone.
  • We will gladly mail your supplies and take payment over the phone if you don’t or can’t come to our office
  • Patient, audiologists and any others present will be required to wear a mask for the duration of the visit. We ask that you limit the number of individuals present and please call to reschedule if anyone in the home is feeling ill or had possible exposure to an individual with Covid-19.

If you have any concerns, please call us, and we can update you on any changes we may make in the future.  Please check your email, our website, or our Facebook page for continued updates.

Things To Consider When Choosing A Hearing Aid

These days, we’re constantly surrounded by sound. The sounds of life are something nobody should miss out on, especially if they don’t have to. As technology becomes more abundant, we’ve made communication more available than ever before with phone calls and now facetime and video conferencing. These new communications mediums are highly advanced, but nothing will compete with the quality of true human communication directly from the lips. These new mediums often make healing more difficult, now more than ever, it’s important to address your hearing issues.

Let’s dive into some tips to consider when choosing a hearing aid. 

1. Visit your doctor 

It’s important to rule out any other causes of hearing loss before purchasing your hearing loss device. Ear infections and even earwax can cause nonpermanent hearing loss and can be treated by your doctor with no need for a hearing aid. 

2. Schedule an appointment with an audiologist 

An audiologist will access your hearing and can make a recommendation on the type of hearing aid that would be best for you. Ask your doctor for a recommendation. 

3. Test out different hearing aids with a trial period 

Trial periods are beneficial for multiple reasons. The first reason being it gives you an opportunity to figure out which hearing aid will be most comfortable for you. Trial periods also allow you to determine if you have all of the features you want. 

4. Consider future needs 

Ask if your hearing aid has different power levels. As time goes on, your hearing loss may get worse. If that is the case, you may need to consider a hearing aid with adjustable power. 

5. Make sure to budget for your hearing aid

Hearing aids can be expensive. It’s a good idea to begin budgeting months before you’re ready to commit to a new device.

6. Consider the warranty

As tip #5 states, hearing aids are expensive. You should consider the available warranties when making your hearing aid selection.

7. Are the extras worth it?

Consider the costs and benefits of additional luxury features. Bluetooth smartphone capability is a nice feature to have, but it can cost hundreds of dollars extra. Most hearing aids are more than capable of being used with cell phones without the added Bluetooth feature.

8. Want a lower price? Ask for one!

Consumerreports.org reported that 14% of individuals in their survey tried to negotiate a lower price while 50% of those individuals successfully brought the price down.  

Once you’ve done the proper research and selected your hearing aid, the learning curve begins. It’s important to remember that a hearing aid won’t return your hearing to your previously normal standards. That being said, you will get used to your new normal over time! You’ll need to use your new hearing aid in order to get used to it. Try adjusting the power levels and practice removing it and cleaning it to become comfortable handling it.  

Now that you know what to look for in a hearing aid, we’d like to encourage you to set up an at-home appointment with us from Ecoutez! We’ll connect you to the sounds of life in the comfort of your very own home! For more information on Ecoutez and hearing loss check out our other blogs!

You Need to Know These Things About Hearing Loss

Did you know that nearly 400 million people around the world experience some form of hearing deficiency? Nowadays, there’s no need to be ashamed or embarrassed about hearing loss. We are surrounded by devices that are capable of playing audio and those that weren’t born with a hearing deficiency are constantly at risk of developing one.

Here are 7 things about hearing deficiencies that you need to know.

  1. Only a fifth of people that would benefit from wearing a hearing aid actually wear one. This is truly a remarkable statistic, and it’s one of the reasons we decided to come to the United States. We want our product to assist every person that needs it.
  2. Hearing loss increases the risk of dementia. A study conducted by Johns Hopkin University found this to be true. 
  3. Over 25 million are exposed to noise levels that could compromise their hearing abilities every day.
  4. Individuals with hearing loss wait on average more than 6 years before addressing the issue.
  5. Over 30 million people affected by hearing loss are under the age of 15. Parents, take note. Hearing loss is not exclusive to older demographics.
  6. ⅓ of people over the age of 65 experience hearing loss. This includes more than 160 million people around the globe.
  7. 12 percent of the U.S. population, 38 million people, experience hearing loss. 

You don’t have to let hearing loss change your life. Our hearing aids provide our clients with the same happy life they experienced before they experienced hearing loss. Learn more about us here.

Our success in The Netherlands was very encouraging. This made us consider providing hearing solutions in other countries. We can do so much to help people in the USA with hearing loss and we are disappointed by how often it is ignored. 

We urge everyone with the need for a hearing aid to getting in touch with us. There is nothing we enjoy more than seeing the smile on the client’s faces with their hearing is restored to exciting levels. If this information has been helpful to you, check out our other blogs.

You’re Invited!

You’re invited to our Grand Opening Weekend. We’ll be throwing a special “Heareasy” party (our version of a speakeasy 🍸) and a weekend of fun events. Sign up here and get a free hearing test!

After 20 Years, I Can Participate In Conversations Again!

Rob van Dorresteijn is an Écoutez customer. He had had doubts about his hearing for over 20 years. He has been wearing a hearing aid for about a year.

“I can fully participate in conversations again,” he says. “I often felt I was missing comments, especially in a larger group. My wife also made comments about it regularly. When I had my hearing tested I found that I missed a significant part of the high tones. Yet, I continued to walk around with my hearing loss for a long time. Too long.”

“I think I was not mentally ready. But in the meantime I couldn’t follow meetings at work and I got confused with speech. This was very annoying.”

“When a friend pointed out the excellent service and the huge range of hearing aids at Écoutez, I took the plunge. After a trial period, I made a final choice in close consultation with hearing care professional Lisette Kolenbrander. A hearing aid must be properly adjusted. I did not know that. Écoutez took plenty of time for that and after each appointment my hearing was better again.”

“Écoutez has ensured that I can fully participate in conversations again. I am satisfied with what I can hear again. And it turns out, despite my bald head, that a hearing aid is much less noticeable than I thought!”


Rob now has a great sense of hearing to match his great sense of humor! We are always so happy when a customer is satisfied with their hearing solution. Rob waited for over 20 years. That is something that happens far too often. If you have doubts about your hearing, please come in for a free hearing test and we’ll show you exactly how you hear the world and what is causing you difficulties.

Sign up here → www.ecoutez.com 

For the First Time In My Life, I Was Able to Hear

As a baby, Gert-Jan developed meningitis with one-sided deafness. This would always play a role during his life and often evoked feelings of discomfort, sometimes shame and other emotions. This all changed when Écoutez presented a hearing solution just for him.

“I have never experienced what it is like to hear with both ears. As if there was no world on my left. From my early childhood, I had hearing tests at an audiology center. The experts said that nothing could be done.”

“But both at work and in my private life, annoying situations arose in which my hearing loss got in my way. I couldn’t understand my own children. I missed their first words and not hearing when they approached me. I could not follow conversations at the table. I also avoided conversations at parties. And after a family dinner, I always came home exhausted from the effort.”

“I realized I could no longer live like that. Two years ago, I had another audiological test done. The advice was to try a CROS hearing aid. This was an advanced solution that I had never heard of before. It would cause the sound on the side of my deaf left ear to pass into my right ear. I called Écoutez and was able to drop by immediately.”

“I was looking forward to the appointment, when I would hear with my wife if this was the technical solution to my one-sided deafness. I was very surprised that Lisette Kolenbrander, a triage hearing care professional at Écoutez, had already prepared a hearing solution just for me. She understood exactly what I was talking about and I was able to try the hearing aid right away.”

“Lisette warned me about the effect on what I was going to hear. She also prepared me for it to be disappointing. Thankfully, none of that happened. The Cros hearing aid was, in one word, phenomenal.”

“After 37 years, for the first time in my life, I heard sound from the left in my right ear through the CROS solution. Tears of happiness rolled down my cheeks. I was finally able to relax. It was fantastic. I thanked Lisette for her beautiful work, clear explanation, and her thoughtful, personal approach. Écoutez hearing solutions are something to appreciate greatly. Lisette is passionate about her profession, she is worth gold.”

“My wife says I’m calmer now. And I have much more energy because hearing is natural and takes less effort. Yes, there are also disadvantages. I’m annoyed by the sound of a sandwich bag, and the wind while cycling. Oh, well! I get so much in return. My daughter whispers in my left ear ‘I love you’ and I hear it in my right.”

“My message to anyone with hearing loss. Don’t wait that long. You don’t know what you’re missing until you get it back. Or in my case…you may have the chance to experience what it’s like to truly hear for the first time in your life.”

We are so happy that an Écoutez hearing solution was able to change Gert-Jan’s life. If you have a similar story, we’d love to visit with you about a solution as well. Please sign up today for a free hearing test.

5 People Who Love Ecoutez Hearing Solutions (And Why)

1. The Active Retiree

John, 65

John has recently retired and spends as much time as he can with his family or on his boat. He first started noticing his hearing loss when his wife, Leigh, started to complain because he was turning the volume up way too loud on the TV. Still, John put getting a hearing test off for a while, because he figured it was no big deal. Then, John’s grandson hooked his finger while they were fishing and John didn’t hear him asking for help. That was the kicker.

John visited The Hearing Lab and we were able to sit with him and Leigh and run a comprehensive hearing test. It turns out John was experiencing hearing loss. We were able to match him with the perfect hearing aid for his needs.

2. The Public Speaker

Shae, 58

Shae is a motivational speaker who spends a lot of time in front of big groups of people. When she’s giving talks, she often interacts a lot with her audience. This means it’s important to hear them, and understand what they’re saying, the first time they speak.

Shae first noticed her hearing loss when she had to keep asking “Excuse me, could you say that again?” and “Would you mind repeating that?” during speaking engagements.

Shae stopped by our store and we ran a test. It turns out that Shae suffers from sensorineural hearing loss due to damage to her inner ear. After 15 years of public speaking, which often included loud music, waves of acoustic applause, and straining to listen to people, her hearing began to suffer.

With the right hearing aid and fitting, we were able to improve Shae’s hearing and get her back out there doing what she loves best. On top of that, her hearing aids sync up to the technology she uses for presentations, so she never misses a cue or a question.

3. The Happy Grandparent

Eleanor, 74

Eleanor feels like she was put on Earth to do one thing: love her family with all of her heart. She spends a lot of time with her three daughters, Cora, Julie, and Laurel, and their husbands, sons, and daughters. Recently, her grandchildren have been complaining to their parents that Grandma Eleanor doesn’t listen to them when they talk to her. 

When Julie told Eleanor this, she was devastated. She’s spent her life worshipping every word these kids have ever told her. Laurel drove her down to the store and within an hour we were able to show her exactly what was happening with her hearing. Eleanor had mixed hearing loss occurring in her inner and middle ear.

With the finest hearing aids in the world, we were able to match her perfectly with a hearing solution that has greatly improved her hearing. She’s now happy to report she can hear her grandkids beg for more cookies any day of the week.

4. The Musician

Jan, 55

Robin is an accomplished violinist in the local symphony orchestra. Musicians are 4 times as likely to experience noise-induced hearing loss. Robin, unfortunately, is no exception. She started noticing during practice that she couldn’t hear some of the higher pitch instruments. This led to some intense tinnitus (ringing in the ears) and headaches.

At the suggestion of a friend, Robin stopped by and we helped her in two ways. First, we set her up with hearing aids. Then, we also gave her all of the materials about hearing protection so that she could inform other members of her symphony how to best protect their ears from hearing loss.

Robin is now able to nail her solos without a moment of hesitation. 

5. The Business Person

Curtis, 63

Curtis is in his early 60s and feels like he’s mostly at the top of his game at the office, where he runs a small tech firm. The only problem is that he’s beginning to miss every other word from his female co-workers. Also, he’s beginning to hear mumbling from some other coworkers.

Curtis came to visit The Hearing Lab at our store and we let him know this is very common in the early stages of hearing loss. Curtis was concerned that wearing a hearing aid might lessen the image of his virility and strength at the office. But after seeing our discreet hearing aid options, and hearing their awesome power, that concern was gone alone with the murmurs!

Sound familiar?

Do any of these customers or symptoms sound familiar? We are honored to be here for your hearing loss needs. Our store is a stylish, comfortable alternative to the clinical hearing aid providers you’re used to. Make an appointment to come in for a free hearing test or just stop in next time you’re at Southlake Town Square.

We can’t wait to meet you.

Sign up for your free hearing test here. And if you enjoyed this blog, visit our company blog page to read more tips about turning hearing impairment into hearing empowerment.

10 Signs You’re Experiencing Hearing Loss

 “Connecting you to the sounds of life.”

We’re excited to open our first store soon in the USA in Southlake, Texas. We can’t wait to meet you! Until then, please consider these 10 signs you’re experiencing hearing loss.

1. Painful Conversations

Do many of your conversation-filled days end with a headache? What about that feeling of fatigue after a busy group meeting or family gathering? When you are forced to strain to keep up with conversations, it leads to exhaustion, fatigue, and headaches. This is an early sign of hearing loss.  

2. You Lean A Lot

It is common for people who are experiencing hearing loss in one ear to shift their head to their favored ear. If you find yourself favoring one ear over the other, this is an indicator of hearing loss in your other ear. This happens a lot in conversations and when using your cell phone.

3. Volume Control

If you’ve had people in your life repeatedly tell you that you keep the volume way too loud on the TV, this is another sign of hearing loss. Improving your hearing loss with a hearing aid can make watching movies and listening to music much more pleasurable.

4. Say What?

If you find yourself constantly saying “What?” in conversations, it’s probably because you aren’t hearing what people are saying. Addressing your hearing loss will help you not only hear, but understand the people around you.

5. A Problem With Mumblers

When hearing loss continues, you may find yourself overwhelmed with an abundance of mumblers in your life. When you experience hearing loss, certain sounds are impacted more than others. This means you are hearing part of what people are saying, but not the rest. This is what causes you to believe that people are mumbling. 

6. The Blockage Effect

Hearing loss can also make you feel like your ears are clogged or blocked up. Think back and remember a time when you had water or a Q-tip stuck in your ear. Is this feeling persisting? If you see a doctor and there’s nothing in there, hearing loss may very well be the reason.  

7. Communication Breakdowns

Communication is an essential element in any successful relationship. But what happens when you can’t hear what the other person is saying? A lot of times, we find husbands and wives will address their partner’s hearing loss even before the person experiencing the impairment. Hearing loss contributes to fighting, bickering, and awkward silence.

Senior man and woman arguing in apartment

8. Loneliness

Does your inability to hear cause you to skip out on social situations? You are not alone. This is a common sign of many people who have hearing loss. Everyone needs a break from time to time, but if you’re not getting out and not feeling active, it’s time to get a hearing test.

9. Keep it Down!

Just as some people with hearing loss require the volume to be very high, others will become very irritated by loud noises or sudden increases in volume. Does this happen to you?

10. Women & Children

Losing the ability to hear high-pitched noises is a common early sign of hearing loss. Do you have trouble understanding children or women?

If you are experiencing any of these signs, it’s a good idea to visit our store for a free hearing test. We’ll use our modern technology to show you exactly how you hear the world and help you identify a solution to improve your hearing.

You’re Invited!

You’re invited to our Grand Opening Weekend. We’ll be throwing a special “Heareasy” party (our version of a speakeasy 🍸) and a weekend of fun events. Sign up for the event below, which includes a free hearing test!

See You Soon!

A Behind-the-Scenes Preview of the Ecoutez Hearing Aid Boutique in Southlake Town Square

We’re here to change the way people treat hearing loss in the USA, and that starts at our first American store in Southlake, Texas. Please enjoy this sneak peek at what goes into creating our unique retail approach to hearing solutions.

Interiors

“Everywhere you look in the new store, you partake in a visual feast. This is intentional and all goes back to the customer experience.”

It’s important for us that our customers feel both comfortable and inspired. In The Netherlands, we found that hearing loss was most often treated in cold medical environments. There was no thought that went into the experience for the hearing impaired.

At Écoutez, you’ll experience warmth and elegance. Much consideration goes into how our customers feel as soon as they walk through the doors. 

We worked with a marvelous Dutch interior designer, Chantal Hoozemans, to create the store’s interiors. Ecoutez is proud to be a family business. Hoozemans is a cousin to Ilse and Lisette, our founders. This familial intimacy allows Chantal to understand their vision on a higher level. 

“Chantal knows exactly who I am and what I want,” says Ilse Kolendbrander. “She translates that perfectly into the interior design.”

Hoozemans chose a “modern classic” theme for the first Écoutez store in the USA. These elements are timeless and invoke a sensory experience.

Notice the curated balance of plush velvet and invigorating metallic tones. Everywhere you look in the new store, you partake in a visual feast. This is intentional and all goes back to the customer experience.

“I enjoy the table at the front of our store. From there, people often sit and drink coffee and chat. We are here to create a community of people dedicated to empowering their hearing,” Ilse says. “That starts at the front of the store where our customers sit together and share their stories and their experiences. They can also see the entire store and stimulate their senses.”

"I enjoy the table at the front of our store. From there, people often sit and drink coffee and chat."

“When people experience hearing loss, the other senses elevate,” Ilse adds. “We love being able to provide the taste and smell of coffee, the inviting feeling of our furniture, and a fantastic view of our beautiful store. 

Technology

In The Hearing Lab at Écoutez, technology is a tool we use to help our customers empower their hearing. We’re proud to put our technology into the hands of our trusted audiologists. It’s inspiring to watch as they turn a small, precious hearing aid into a powerful extension of a person.

Another thing our customers always comment on is the comfort of our sound booths. This is where we perform our hearing tests.

“The traditional sound booths in the industry are so small. It’s a very claustrophobic experience,” Ilse says. “We created something bigger and more comfortable. Our booths give a more calm feeling. It’s important that customers are able to relax. This helps our technology take better measurements. Then, our audiologists are able to provide better results to our customers.”

You’re Invited

We can’t wait for you to experience hearing empowerment at our Southlake Town Square store. Currently, we’re following the COVID-19 pandemic like everyone else. We look forward to opening as soon as it’s safe for our customers and team.

Our first step to getting to know everyone in DFW is throwing a huge Grand Opening weekend party. This will include a FREE hearing test and a Heareasy Party, our version of a Roaring 20s Speakeasy. 

Sign up for your free test at www.ecoutez.com.

The Story of Écoutez

“Connecting you to the sounds of life.”

We’re excited to open our first store soon in the USA in Southlake, Texas. We can’t wait to meet you! Until then, we hope you’ll enjoy reading about why we’re headed from The Netherlands to the Lone Star State.

Our Origin

Écoutez is a Dutch family company created by sisters Ilse and Lisette Kolenbrander. The Kolenbrander sisters share over 20 years experience in the hearing technology business.

Ilse and Lisette noticed early on that most hearing aid offices are cold and clinical. The typical experience felt very sterile and impersonal. They also noticed these offices often featured inferior hearing aid products.

Ilse and Lisette knew something had to change. They soon committed to providing a superior experience for people with hearing loss. This led them to create Écoutez Hearing Aid Boutique.

At Écoutez, you will find an atmosphere that is more like a luxury retail store and less like a doctor’s office. And you will find products that are graceful and stylish.

Our Name

“Écoutez” means “listen” in French. Here in Texas it’s pronounced “eh-coo-tay”. “Listen” is an important word for our company. We listen to our customers when they tell us about their hearing loss. And we empower them to listen to the sounds of life. There’s nothing more fulfilling for our team than helping our customers hear again.

We help our customers hear by listening to who they are and what they experience. Every customer has a different story. You even have different goals for improving your hearing. Some of our customers want to improve their marriages. Others want to go to work and not fear missing out on important conversations. And still others want to enjoy concerts and sports events.

Our Logo

A lot of times, we’ll ask customers what they miss about hearing. Many of them say the first thing they miss hearing is the sound of birds chirping. That’s why we’ve chosen a bird to represent the brand. We love when our customers call us to let us know they can hear birds again.

No matter if you’re in The Netherlands or in the Lone Star State, we can all celebrate the experience of sound. 

Coming to the USA

Our success in The Netherlands was very encouraging. This made us consider providing hearing solutions in other countries. We can do so much to help people in the USA with hearing loss, because it is often ignored. The average person waits 7-10 years to seek professional help with their hearing loss. We want to change that. Starting with Texas!

Ilse and Lisette are ecstatic to bring our unique retail approach to the USA. At our Southlake, Texas store, you’ll find out that an Écoutez hearing solution is something brand new. You’ve never experienced anything like the Écoutez Hearing Lab!

The Hearing Lab

In our Hearing Lab, we use the latest technology to provide you with a FREE hearing test. Then, we sample the world’s finest hearing aids to see what is the best fit for you. We also show your partner how you hear the world now, and how your hearing will improve with the right hearing aid.

But our favorite thing that sets us apart is that our relationship will not end when you leave the store.

The Écoutez team of audiologists and consultants will continue to guide you for years. We’re here for calibrations, to answer questions, and to listen and chat. In fact, in The Netherlands, many of our customers stop by to visit on a regular basis for a fun chat over coffee or tea.

You’re Invited!

You’re invited to our Grand Opening Weekend. We’ll be throwing a special “Heareasy” party (our version of a speakeasy 🍸) and a weekend of fun events. Sign up for the event below, which includes a free hearing test!

See You Soon!