What to Look For When Picking Out Hearing Aids

Woman suffering from hearing loss choosing a hearing aid.

If you’ve decided that you need to get hearing aids, what’s your next move? Hearing aids are going to become an important part of your life, so selecting the right kind matters. Quality hearing aids can be purchased from a hearing aid specialist, but the cheaper flimsy ones can be found only on the internet. Only you know how much you are prepared to spend and what quality of hearing aids you are willing to buy. What should you expect when investing in hearing aids?

Those Internet Knockoffs

Hearing assistance devices which are found on the internet are not really a bargain and their not actually hearing aids. They are very low-quality and don’t perform very well. Batteries will be expensive if you need to replace them constantly.

These low-quality devices will help amplify sound, which is the basic feature of hearing aids but they don’t do anything else. Modern, high-quality digital hearing aids integrate different technologies to deliver a device customized to your exact needs. You can go cheap and get one online but you will miss out on important features.

You have to appreciate your new hearing aids for what they are – an investment in your future. Hearing impacts every aspect of your life so it’s not the place you want to look to save money. 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

Digital hearing aids offer better quality sound that is more dependable. If you come across analog hearing aids, move on and look at the digital units, instead.

It’s likely all of the hearing aids you see at a quality retailer will be digital. If you don’t know the difference you may mistake an analog device for a digital. Low-quality analog signals are what the older hearing aids work with. The sound quality is very inconsistent with analog devices.

Choosing The Perfect Features

When you go looking for hearing aids consider the two aspects which are features and style. You want features that make your life easier in a style that is comfortable. Some standard features to think about include:

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

Take Into Consideration The Different Styles

There are numerous styles available, as you will see when you get started researching hearing aids. That’s great news because it means there is undoubtedly a style that will be perfect for your needs. The various styles of hearing aids include:

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

The names give a pretty good definition of each. BTE means “behind the ear” and that’s just where it goes. An ear-mold rests at the ear’s opening and has clear tubing which connects it to the BTE.

Did you already figure out that 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 indicates “in the canal” and they are very much like ITE’s but ITC’s go further into the ear canal and that means that you won’t see them so much.

RIC devices and RIE hearing aids have a “receiver in the canal” and a “receiver in the ear” respectively, which are then connected to a piece behind the ear. Both styles are usually less conspicuous than BTE hearing aids.

As opposed to having ear-molds, open fit devices, which are a kind of BTE, have a thin tube that goes into the ear canal. This format is a good choice for people who don’t like the feel of something inside their ear.

Thinking about all of these options, you need to choose which style and options will fit your needs the most. Bluetooth capability, for instance, is a function you would want if you use your phone or a computer frequently. Rechargeable batteries save you money on replacement batteries and telecoil is good if you have to listen to lectures or seminars a lot.

Finally, Consider Your Buying Options

You should go to a qualified retailer to buy your hearing aids, one that custom fits the devices and offers a free trial period. The truth is, when it comes to hearing aids, you can’t be certain until you try them, so having the opportunity to try them for a while helps.

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

Before purchasing hearing aids schedule an appointment with a hearing care specialist for a checkup and hearing test, also. Some changes in your hearing don’t require hearing aids.

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