When Picking Out a Hearing Aid, What Should You Look For?

Woman suffering from hearing loss choosing a hearing aid.

If you’ve recognized that you need to buy hearing aids, what’s your next move? Hearing aids are soon to become an important part of your life so purchase wisely. If you find some hearing aids that can only be purchased on the internet, then you can be fairly certain that they are likely to be pretty flimsy. It’s up to you to decide what you expect from the device and how much you can afford to pay. What should you expect when investing in hearing aids?

Cheap Internet Knockoffs Are Not Really Hearing Aids

Internet hearing assistance devices are not really the bargain they would appear to be. They are very poor in quality and don’t work very well. The money you save on the device itself, you end up losing because you have to continuously replace the batteries, and you will replace them a lot.

The only feature that these cheaper devices perform is sound amplification. You get a number of different technologies in a modern high-quality hearing aid that can be customized to your precise needs. Several essential features will be sacrificed if you decide to get a cheap online device.

You have to appreciate your new hearing aids for what they are – an investment in your future. It’s great to try to stretch your budget, but not when it concerns something that affects every part of your life like your hearing. Be sure to get the hearing aids you actually need. Even if you can’t afford them there may be other solutions.

Analog Vs. Digital

A higher quality, more dependable sound is delivered by digital hearing aids and they’re far more consistent also. It’s not even worth spending the time to look at analog units.

If you go to a reputable hearing aid seller, all of the units will be digital. It’s important to recognize analog devices are out there, though, and to educate yourself about the difference between the two. Low-quality analog signals are what the older out-dated hearing aids work with. The sound quality is very inconsistent with old analog models.

Looking For The Ideal Features

There are actually two aspects to hearing aid shopping: features and style. You want a comfortable style that offers features that make your life better. A few standard features to consider include:

  • Telecoils
  • Environmental noise control
  • Variable programming
  • Rechargeable batteries
  • Noise reduction
  • Directional microphones
  • Wireless connectivity
  • Remote controls
  • Bluetooth
  • Direct audio input
  • Synchronization

Think about the Styles

There are a lot of styles available to you, as you will realize when you start researching hearing aids. There is undoubtedly a style that will work for you, and that’s the great news. Some of the different styles are:

  • Open Fit
  • Receiver-in-the-Canal (RIC)
  • In-the-Ear (ITE)
  • Receiver-in-the-Ear (RIE)
  • Behind-the-Ear (BTE)
  • In-the-Ear (ITE)

The names offer an apt definition for each. BTE means “behind the ear” and that’s just where the piece goes. A clear piece of tubing attaches the BTE to an ear-mold which sits in the opening of the ear canal.

As is obvious by the name, ITE devices go “in the ear”. It’s a single unit that rests in the opening of the ear canal. Nothing attaches behind the ear. ITC devices are very similar but they go deeper inside the ear, making them less visible.

RIC devices and RIE devices have a “receiver in the canal” and a “receiver in the ear” respectively, which are then connected to a piece behind the ear. These hearing aids are not as obvious as a BTE.

Finally, open fit units are BTE devices but instead of connecting to an ear-mold, a tiny tube goes into the ear canal. If you don’t like the feeling of something in your ear, this format is a good choice for you.

Your job is to go over each of these options and decide which of them is most important to you. To give an example, if you use your phone or a computer regularly, you will probably want a device that has Bluetooth capabilities. If you listen to seminars and lectures, telecoil is a great option and rechargeable batteries will save you money on replacement batteries.

Finally, Consider Your Buying Options

You should go to a qualified retailer to buy your hearing aids, One that offers a free trial period and custom fits the device. Having a chance to try out your new hearing aids before you buy them will give you confidence that you are making the correct choice.

A good warranty will come with a quality hearing aid, so don’t overlook that. What’s covered? Some will only pay for replacement parts, some cover the labor, also, and what about a new hearing aid if can’t be fixed?

Before buying hearing aids schedule an appointment with a hearing care professional for a checkup and hearing test, also. Not all changes to your hearing call for purchasing hearing aids.

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.