Like lots of other devices, hearing aids are getting smarter all of the time. They’re also less conspicuous and cooler than they ever have been. The U.S. census documents that the average American is older as the population as a whole continues to age, and unfortunately, hearing loss, particularly in older people, is extremely common. Approximately 37.5 million adults in America say they have some amount of hearing loss, and these numbers are increasing.
Fortunately hearing technology has had some amazing developments recently that will provide more possibilities for treating hearing loss. Here are just a few of the innovations coming our way.
Hearing Aids That Track Your Overall Health
Hearing aids are as good if not better than a fitness tracker at tracking several vital signs. Not only can it keep track of step count, how many calories were burned, the total number of steps you took and heart rate, it also checks the time in between heartbeats to help find any cardiovascular concerns. They are even developing technology that can determine blood pressure, oxygenation of the blood and other relevant vital signs. Hearing aids also often have other benefits, including the ability to help drown out tinnitus and will improve your social life by bettering your general hearing. Actually, social involvement has been connected to your general health also, so actually it’s another health metric we should be following. Since hearing aids can now also sync with your smartphone so you can listen to your songs, you won’t even need a smartwatch or fitness device?
Streaming Made Easier And More Intelligent
As we get addicted to virtual assistants like Alexa and Siri, staying connected and able to communicate with them is getting more important. Even if you ignore the allure of talking directly to these assistants, Bluetooth hearing aids allow you to stream sound from any Bluetooth device including your smart TV or phone. Just consider the advantages: You can steer clear of getting yelled at for having the Volume too loud while watching this year’s Big Game in a room full of screaming friends. The ability to directly stream music, phone calls, shows and more right to your ears not only helps you hear and enjoy them more, but it will help you manage your hearing loss discreetly.
Have you noticed that you get ads from Goodreads and they seem to know what type of books you like to read? Or how Amazon somehow know which items to recommend? This is the power of artificial intelligence and big data. Modern hearing aids harness this kind of intelligence and use it to make changes according to your past reactions. For instance, if you turned down the volume the last time you went to the train station, your hearing aid will remember that and turn itself down the next time you visit the train station. They are expanding this technology to include crowdsourcing as well, allowing information from other users to inform your hearing aids that you’re approaching a loud zone. Over time the hearing aids analyze all this information to make suggestions and automatic corrections, so you can adjust quickly to changes in the hearing environment.
You Won’t Need to Keep Replacing Those Tiny Batteries
Why would you want to continuously wrestle with hearing aid batteries? Rechargeable hearing aids are currently available. While you can do a lot to help extend the life of your hearing aids’ batteries, truth be told…it’s still expensive and irritating. Better still, technology to recharge your hearing aids while they are still in your ears is being developed.