Hearing loss can be tricky to notice in the very early stages; often, we
What Should You Know Before Buying Hearing Aids?
If you are one of the 50-million Americans who experience hearing loss, studies show that there is a one in three chance that wearing hearing aids will be deemed an essential part of your management strategy. While an experienced audiologist will guide you through the process, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the process of buying hearing aids in advance. Here are some key things you need to know ahead of your hearing aid appointment with your audiologist.
Hearing Aids Don’t Cure Hearing Loss
Hearing aids are not a cure for hearing loss. In the same way that eyeglasses are there to help manage sight loss by correcting your vision, hearing aids serve to correct your hearing loss. They do this by providing amplification systems and advanced technologies but will not cure any underlying issues.
Hearing Aids Can Slow Progressive Hearing
As corrective devices, hearing aids won’t stop progressive hearing loss. However, they can slow the rate of regression as there is less strain on the brain and your auditory system. So, in addition to the short-term benefits of being able to hear more when wearing hearing aids, there are potential long-term rewards.
If your hearing loss remains in the mild-to-moderate range, it will have a far smaller impact on your daily life too.
Hearing Aids Are Available in Many Styles
No two people have the exact same hearing profile or lifestyle. As such, it’s imperative that you work with your audiologist to find a suitable solution for your level of hearing loss. Behind the ear (BTE), in the ear (ITE) and in the canal (ITC) are the three types that you need to familiarize yourself with right away.
Your audiologist can talk you through the pros and cons of each style, as well as different brands and models in further detail.
Hearing Aids Aren’t Only for Hearing Loss
While hearing aids are primarily considered devices to help manage hearing loss, their benefits can extend to related auditory issues. For example, if you experience tinnitus, some hearing aids can play white noise or melodies to overcome the internal noises that you hear. This significantly reduces the impact of tinnitus on your life.
Whistles, humming and other tinnitus sounds will be far less frequent. It can enhance human interactions even when it doesn’t technically boost your hearing.
Hearing Aids Should Not Be Purchased Online or Over the Shelf
While you can order them online or over the shelf, hearing aids are intricate and complex devices that should be calibrated to your needs. Even after you have gained a diagnosis courtesy of a hearing test, it’s always best to let an audiologist check that the hearing aids are set correctly. Likewise, a dedicated hearing aids fitting appointment will check for comfort and help you understand how to change the volume and other settings.
Hearing Aids Need Some Time for Acclimatization
Before buying hearing aids, you should be realistic about your expectations. They won’t suddenly restore your hearing to perfect levels. Similarly, there may be a period of transition involved. Wearing hearing aids can be a little overwhelming at first, but you will soon get used to it. The key is to stick with it.
Your audiologist can teach you valuable strategies like only wearing them for an hour or two during the first few days.
Hearing Aids Can Include a Range of Advanced Features
As well as the ability to play white noise, modern hearing aids can feature a range of cool features. Bluetooth connections allow them to work in conjunction with various hearing assistive technologies (HATs). For example, you can hold telephone conversations via the hearing aid or listen to the TV via your device. Your audiologist will discuss these after your hearing test and ensure that the hearing aids you buy boast the features you desire.
Hearing Aids Are Delicate
Once you buy your hearing aids, you may assume that everything is under control. However, you must keep your devices protected, especially when you are not wearing them. Meanwhile, you must stay vigilant to common troubleshooting issues. The tubing on BTE devices, amplification on ITC or casing on ITE devices could all face issues.
Dead or low batteries are another issue that can cause significant disruption to the performance. The sooner you act, the better.
To learn more about the best hearing aids on the market and how to find the right device for your hearing profile, call Quality Hearing & Audiology Center at 816-233-0022 today!