Meet our Audiologist Luciana Garolla

Meet Luciana, a Doctor of Audiology at the World of Hearing clinic in Toronto. Originally from Brazil, her passion for helping the hard of hearing began at a young age—inspired by a soap opera she watched at the age of ten. With over 25 years of experience in her field, Luciana is proud to have achieved her dream of practicing audiology in Canada. Keep reading to learn what Luciana loves most about helping people with their hearing and how she feels about contributing to World of Hearing's modern approach to hearing health. Read her full interview below! 

1. Why did you decide to become an audiologist?

When I was ten years old, I was watching a soap opera with a main character who was hard of hearing and learning how to speak with the help of an audiologist. I’ll always remember the scene where the audiologist placed his hands over loudspeakers for him to feel the sounds and start to articulate the sound and feel it in his throat. I decided right then and there that was what I wanted to do when I grew up. I was determined to help individuals who are hard of hearing learn to communicate, just like the character did in the show. 

2. What brought you to Canada? How did you feel when you arrived?

I was inspired by Canadian research in audiology, particularly from Warren Estabrooks, a renowned teacher for deaf children. I followed his work and attended his seminars in Brazil. My focus on studying hearing aids led me to Western Ontario University, where Susan Scollie and Richard Seewald developed the first pediatric goals for hearing aid fittings. I arrived in Canada intending to study and return to Brazil, where I was a professor. However, I ended up staying for six years. I did miss Brazil and its lifestyle, so after completing my PhD research, I returned to present it and eventually opened my own practice. I then pursued a postdoctorate degree at Federal University of Sao Paulo before returning to Canada five years ago. 

3. What attracted you to Connect Hearing?  

The opportunity to work with the best hearing solutions on the market! With my background in research and experience with children, I know the importance of research behind the solutions we offer. This drives my confidence in prescribing hearing aids and their potential benefits. 

4. What’s one experience you’ve had with a client that stood out to you?  

I had a client with bi-modal hearing (one cochlear implant, one hearing aid) who struggled to hear in situations with a lot of background noise. I offered him a trial with Roger, which he wasn’t convinced would help. But within days, he noticed a huge improvement, especially when trying to follow a conversation in a restaurant.  At his next appointment, he teared up and asked if he could kiss my hands in gratitude. It made me so happy and was so rewarding knowing that his life was positively impacted.  

5. What are some common misconceptions about hearing aids? 

People often worry about three things when it comes to hearing aids: that they'll be big, bulky, and beige! But my clients are often surprised by how invisible the hearing aids can be. When they see the device outside, they assume they will need to grow their hair out to hide it. I place it on and they see it’s almost invisible, and they can barely feel it. Showing them discreet options makes them more open to exploring how hearing aids can improve their quality of life.  

6. What is the coolest thing about hearing aids?  

The coolest thing about hearing aids is the advanced technology packed into these small devices. They analyze the environment, prioritize speech, and adjust amplification levels in real-time, all without any delays. Coming from the analog era, I'm impressed by how much sound processing happens in that little device while remaining inconspicuous to the user. 

7. If you wore a hearing aid, which one would you choose?  

Phonak Audéo Life™! I love sports and do stand-up paddle boarding in the summer, so I would have my hearing aid out there with me and want a waterproof option that I don’t have to worry about. 

8. What’s it been like working at the new World of Hearing clinic in Toronto? 

It’s always a challenge starting a clinic from the ground up. But I knew I wanted to be a part of this clinic. I wanted the opportunity to use the latest equipment and technology, provide the best service, get other clinicians on board, and provide placements for students. It’s been a challenging but positive journey. Despite coming from different backgrounds and levels of experience, we’re all working together as a team and committed to the success of the clinic.  Seeing our clients refer others to us is incredibly rewarding—it shows we're making a real difference. 

9. Outside of Connect Hearing, what do you like to do for fun? 

I love to dance! I dance all rhythms, but here I’m learning swing dance. I also love improv classes, and recommend them to everyone - it’s basically playtime for adults.  In the summer you can find me on the beach, on my stand-up paddleboard! 

10. What’s something people might not know about you? 

As part of my research, I developed the speech signal in Brazilian Portuguese to do Real Ear Verification (a test to ensure proper sound quality of hearing aids). I introduced the test in Brazil, so every time someone there does the test, they hear my voice!  

Take care of your hearing

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