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How to Find the Best Hearing Aid for You
One in five individuals in America experiences various degrees of hearing loss. Hearing loss is a common health complaint that can be caused by a variety of factors. Old age is the most frequent cause behind hearing loss, as the inner structure of the ear can degrade with time.
As a result, adults who are 65 or older are five times more likely to experience hearing difficulties than those who are under 65. To put things into perspective, hearing loss is the third most common physical condition in adults. In other words, if you are experiencing some form of hearing loss, you are far from being an isolated case. A lot of people do, and that’s precisely why hearing aids have become a popular solution.
Whether your hearing loss is the result of the natural aging process or accidental injury, hearing aids can provide a suitable level of correction to help you maintain your social and professional lifestyle. But there is no one size fits all with hearing devices. With the help of your audiologist, you can find the right hearing aids for your situation.
Defining whether you need hearing aids
The first and most important thing your audiologist will help you to understand is whether hearing aids are the right solution for you. Indeed, you will take hearing tests to identify the degree of hearing loss. These tests, called audiometric tests, are necessary to measure not only how much correction is required for your situation, but also which environments affect your hearing. For instance, it’s not uncommon for individuals at the early stages of hearing loss to experience difficulties in places with a lot of background noise, such as a restaurant or a networking event. But they can be fine in a quiet environment.
Additionally, in the case of sudden hearing loss, your audiologist might suggest further medical examination to determine the cause of the loss. It’s not uncommon for individuals going through heavy medicated treatments to experience hearing loss as a result of the drug. If the issue is spotted early, it can sometimes be reversed by switching to a different treatment. Some health issues, as well, such as sudden obstruction or growth inside the ear, can also be resolved with the help of your audiologist and your doctor, without requiring hearing aids.
There are many types of hearing aids
Finding the best hearing aids for your situation is a little more complicated than determining how much correction you need. There are many different types of hearing aids on the market:
- Behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aids are the most common devices. They sit behind your ear and amplify the sounds into a small earbud, which is placed inside your ear canal. They correct mild-to-profound hearing loss.
- In-the-ear (ITE) hearing aids are custom-made, using a mold of your outer ear. They remain visible inside the ear and are not suitable for individuals prone to ear infections. Due to their position, they are not suitable for the upper range of severe hearing loss.
- In-the-canal (ITC) hearing aids are custom-made earbud-sized devices. They are better suited for mild-to-moderate hearing loss.
- Completely-in-canal (CIC) and invisible-in-canal (IIC) hearing aids are even smaller devices that are custom-made to fit inside the ear canal. They are completely invisible but can be tricky to adjust by yourself.
Technology revolutionizes hearing aids
Finding the right hearing aids for your level of correction is essential, but that’s not all. Your audiologist will introduce different tech devices and tools that can improve your hearing aids experience.
Indeed, you can find devices with a streaming function that allows the wearer to connect via Bluetooth to their TV, radio or even phone and stream the sound directly inside the ear.
Other hearing aids can connect to your smartphone and let you adjust volume and settings via an app. It helps you seamlessly switch settings when you’re changing environments, such as moving from a quiet to a loud background.
A lot of hearing devices have rechargeable batteries, which saves you changing batteries yourself or heading to your audiologist to replace the battery.
There are many more tech elements that can improve your hearing experience. Your audiologist will need to gain a full understanding of your lifestyle and situation to recommend the best hearing aids for you. Someone who works extensively in quiet environments will not be comfortable using a noise cancelation tool. Someone who is constantly switching between loud and quiet places will need hearing aids that can cope with the situation and adapt on the spot.
If you have any questions about hearing aids and want to find out how Audiology and Hearing Aid Center can help you, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our teams of professionally trained audiologists at 920-969-1768.