Embarking on the journey to address hearing loss marks a significant step in life. It enhances your auditory experience and overall quality of life. Yet, the path to improved hearing doesn’t end with the decision to seek treatment; it leads to a pivotal choice that can profoundly impact your daily life – the selection of the right hearing aid. This decision holds immense weight because a comfortable, well-suited hearing aid can either seamlessly integrate into your routine or end up tucked away and forgotten.
In this blog, we will explore some of the major things you need to know before choosing a hearing aid and technology for the hearing impaired.
Understanding Your Hearing Issues
The process of purchasing hearing aids is as straightforward as swiftly navigating the internet and placing an order within moments. But, it is advisable that you begin by undergoing a hearing test and engaging in discussion with a hearing expert to comprehend the most suitable options for your circumstances.
-Get A Hearing Test Done
If you suspect hearing loss, getting a diagnostic hearing test is wise for an accurate assessment of your hearing. This test also unveils other issues impacting hearing, like wax buildup or infections. Post-test, a referral to an otolaryngologist, also known as an ENT doctor, might follow, especially if you have unusual hearing loss patterns, asymmetry, pain drainage, or vertigo.
Dr Thomas Powers, a hearing consultant, emphasises that even with online device purchases, understanding your hearing’s nature and severity remains pivotal for choosing the appropriate hearing device. With the help of hearing aids, one can lead a life similar to how it once was.
-Consult A Specialist About Your Options
Hearing consultant Dr Thomas Powers notes that people frequently underestimate their perceived hearing loss. For instance, if the world seems to mumble around you, your struggle to grasp conversations might be linked to your hearing. Seeking the expertise of a hearing specialist becomes pivotal.
Consider engaging with an audiologist, as these professionals possess specialised education, training, and licencing to diagnose and manage hearing disorders. Both hearing instrument specialists and audiologists hold the competence and credentials to select, fit, and dispense hearing aids.
Beyond physical examinations, audiologists can delve into your medical history and administer relevant diagnostic tests, as affirmed by Dr Kristin Davis, president-elect of the Academy of Doctors of Audiology.
Figure Out The Type Of Hearing Aid You Need
-Daily-Wear Hearing Aids
This particular variety of hearing aid offers the convenience of user-controlled insertion and removal from the ear. Typically, you would place the hearing aid in your ear at the beginning of the day and take it out before bedtime. These daily-wear hearing aids are versatile for most activities and boast water resistance, yet they should be taken out during showering or swimming. The styles encompass options from behind-the-ear designs to in-the-ear models.
– Extended-Wear Hearing Aids
This type of hearing aid, concealed from view, is skillfully placed within your ear by an audiologist. Implantable hearing devices are positioned near the eardrum. The device boasts an extended battery life, typically lasting from one to three months. While swimming necessitates its removal, it can be utilised during showers. Approximately every eight weeks, a visit to the audiologist is required to replace the device.
Key Considerations for Selecting a Hearing Aid
-Kind Of Lifestyle
The style and features you desire for your hearing aids can be influenced by your lifestyle. A sociable individual might prioritise noise-cancelling attributes to navigate bustling environments, whereas someone leading a quieter life could value the authenticity of natural sound.
While the characteristics of your hearing aid can impose certain limitations on your options, modern hearing aid technology often offers extensive functionality with flare.
Feeling self-conscious about wearing hearing aids is a common concern. Fortunately, there are discreet options available, such as in-the-canal (ITC), completely-in-the-canal (CIC), and in-the-ear (ITE) aids, which blend seamlessly without drawing attention.
Nevertheless, given the prevalence of age-related hearing loss, those facing issues with basic motor skills due to arthritis or other conditions might prefer larger aids for comfort.
For those less concerned with discretion, hearing aids in vibrant fluorescent hues are also available, perfectly reflecting vibrant personalities.
When hearing aids and technology for the hearing impaired are mentioned, the first thing that often comes to mind is their price – how expensive they can be. This is somewhat true, but it’s important to break down what’s included in that cost.
For example, services related to hearing aids are usually not covered by insurance and are typically bundled into the initial device cost. In some cases, the hearing aids themselves might seem cheaper, but follow-up appointments aren’t part of the deal (audiologists call this “unbundled” pricing).
The price of a hearing device for people with hearing difficulties is influenced by its level of technology. More advanced or premium technology offers additional features, whereas less costly alternatives are simpler and may provide slightly lower sound quality.
While premium technology has its advantages, everyone’s hearing situation is distinct. It’s important to note that spending more doesn’t necessarily guarantee improved hearing. Thus, it’s wise to choose a solution that suits your needs, aligns with your listening circumstances, and is within your budget.
When selecting a hearing aid, sound quality is one of the major factors to consider. While the overall purpose of hearing aids is consistent – enhancing speech comprehension and clarity – various manufacturers utilise different sound processing algorithms. Some excel in quiet environments, while others offer stronger amplification and better noise reduction capabilities. With your preferences and hearing requirements in mind, you and your provider can identify the most fitting option. It’s important to recognise that not all hearing aids offer the same sound quality.
-Picking Between Battery And Rechargeable
The choice between traditional and rechargeable batteries hinges on patient preference. Rechargeable options are favoured by many and offered by most manufacturers for various styles, including behind-the-ear and fully-in-the-canal custom aids. This trend gains popularity as it eliminates the need for frequent battery purchases and changes. However, individuals who travel frequently without consistent power access or prefer not to rely on chargers might lean towards disposable battery alternatives.
-Bluetooth Compatibility And Hearing Aid Apps
Bluetooth compatibility provides the convenience of connecting hearing devices for the hearing impaired to smart devices like iPhones, Androids, and iPads. This enables control of hearing aid settings through apps and facilitates phone calls and media streaming. For those with hearing impairments, this eliminates the need to swap hearing aids for headphones. Bluetooth also aids sound therapy streaming, which is valuable for tinnitus masking.
Most hearing aid manufacturers offer smartphone apps that pair with hearing aids, granting users control over settings like volume and programme toggling for various listening scenarios set by the audiologist. Certain apps even integrate sound therapy, a helpful feature for individuals dealing with tinnitus.
In conclusion, heading on the journey to address hearing loss is a significant stride toward enhancing your auditory experience and overall quality of life. Choosing the right hearing aid is an absolute necessity, as ending up with the wrong one can not only cause discomfort but end up in major financial loss. If you need the right hearing aids or need help finding one, head on over to Hearing Aid Clinics, the best hearing aid clinic in London.