Hearing aids have entered the future. Sleek, technologically advanced and comfortable, today’s hearing aids have also become less visible and less difficult to use, and they assist in hearing better than at any time in history.
As technology’s prowess has moved into the land of audiology, today’s hearing aid market has become flush with styles and technologies that solve and improve your hearing woes in remarkably specific ways; however, you’ll also find the selection of hearing aid styles may well make your head swim. With so many good options on the market, how are you to choose which hearing aid is right for you?
One reason there are so many hearing aids available is the reality that not all hearing loss or hearing loss sufferers are alike. Some hearing loss is accompanied by tinnitus. Some is mild and relegated to only a small spectrum of frequencies, and the people suffering hearing loss vary a great deal, too. Vastly different budgets can determine the range of some people’s options, and your budget will likely come into play, too.
The cause of your hearing loss can also affect the type of hearing aid you might choose. Visit HearingLife if you’re about to embark on a quest for the perfect hearing aid, and keep in mind these five tips for choosing the one that is right for you.
The Severity of Hearing Loss
The severity of your hearing loss will determine some of your options. Some models, like in-the-ear models (ITE), can work well whether your hearing loss is mild or severe. While other styles, like in-the-canal (ITC) and completely-in-canal (CIC) hearing aids, work best if your hearing loss is only mild to moderate. Your audiologist is your best resource when considering what aid will best suit the degree of hearing loss you suffer, so be sure to ask plenty of questions.
The Type of Hearing Loss
Some hearing loss is only in one ear. Some hearing loss affects lower frequencies to a much greater degree than higher ones. Many people’s hearing loss is accompanied by tinnitus and may require a masking sound in order to give you the best results. The type of hearing loss you suffer will affect which options are right for you.
Some digital models offer more dexterity of programming regarding frequency amplification and sound direction, which may be of great use to some people. However, analog models without that capacity may work completely fine for someone whose hearing loss doesn’t require carefully controlling frequencies.
Your lifestyle will also dictate a lot about the type of hearing aid that will suit you best. If you’re someone who is very active and tends to perspire a lot, you’ll need a hearing aid that is water resistant. While if you’re someone who rarely works up a sweat, you probably won’t need that kind of feature. People with pools or ocean-side houses, who spend a lot of time in the water, may need to get a hearing aid that’s waterproof.
Whatever your lifestyle concerns and needs are, share them with your audiologist so you can be sure to get a hearing aid that won’t slow you down.
Hearing aids, like most things in life, can run the gamut when it comes to price, and because insurance doesn’t always cover the treatment, you need to consider the cost when you’re making a selection. Talk to your audiologist about your budget needs.
Oftentimes, you’ll find the company you’re working for can work out a payment plan with you to ensure you get the type of hearing aid you need.
How a hearing aid feels is a very important consideration that shouldn’t be overlooked when trying to make the right choice, but comfort is much more than how a hearing aid sits in or behind the ear. For a hearing aid to be truly comfortable, it must work toward the wearer’s comfort in a variety of ways, including:
- Is the wearer comfortable with how the visible hearing aid is?
- Is the wearer comfortable with how the hearing aid feels in or against his ear?
- Is the wearer comfortable with how the hearing aid performs in a variety of settings?
- Is the wearer comfortable with the features and adjustability that do or don’t come with the hearing aid?
Choosing the right hearing aid isn’t rocket science, but it does take careful deliberation. By considering your needs along with the help of a skilled audiologist, you can get the hearing aid that suits you, your budget and your lifestyle perfectly.