Choosing the Right Hearing Aid Solution

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The right hearing aids can significantly improve quality of life.

Not all hearing aids are the same, and your needs may be different from others you know who use hearing aids. Knowing how to shop for hearing aids and select the best option for your lifestyle and type of hearing loss will give you the best results.If your hearing loss has prompted you to seek the aid of professionals and technology, you may be hunting for a hearing aid solution that will improve your daily life. Your diagnosis and the recommendations from your audiologist can help you choose the right hearing aid, but there are other considerations which may impact your decision, and understanding the reasoning behind the recommendations can help you make a more informed choice.

Before selecting a hearing aid, provide yourself with education about hearing aids, in general, and your hearing loss specifically. You'll need to know:

  • What your audiogram results were
  • What the results mean in regard to your hearing
  • Which type of hearing loss you are experiencing
  • Where the issue is (middle ear, inner ear, etc.)
  • Why hearing aids are not all the same
  • How your hearing loss can be helped
  • What a hearing aid can and cannot do for you
  • When it's appropriate to wear a hearing aid
  • How to clean and care for hearing aids

Assessing your hearing loss needs. The type of device that works for you will depend on many things, including:

  • The anatomy of your ear: In-the-ear and in-the-canal hearing aids may not work for those with very small ear canals. You may need a behind-the-ear hearing aid due to your physiology, or even a bone induction hearing aid.
  • Degree and type of hearing loss: Certain types of devices operate more helpfully for those with profound hearing loss than others. If your hearing loss is minor, you may have more choices when it comes to hearing aids.
  • What features you need: there are many different technologies and options when it comes to hearing aids. Your lifestyle, school or work environment, or home life may influence your decision.
  • Aesthetics: color, style, and wearability can affect your choice, as well as the shape of your ears, the clothing and makeup you like to wear, your hairstyle, and more. Hearing aids come in many colors and styles, and you shouldn't feel you need to hide your hearing loss.
  • Dexterity: Older users may find certain kinds of hearing aids are difficult to put in, take out, turn on and off, and clean if they have limited dexterity in their fingers or arthritis in their hands. A behind-the-ear aid might be easier than one that fits in the ear or canal.

Your lifestyle will also impact your hearing aid selection. What you do, when and how and where you do it, and what you need or want to accomplish will all factor into your hearing aid decision. If you have an active lifestyle and are often in demanding listening environments, you may need a hearing aid with extra functionality and features, such as directional microphones or wireless capability. These more technologically advanced aids are good for people who:

  • Drive or travel a lot for work or pleasure
  • Work in spaces with a lot of noise from different directions
  • Attend events with large numbers of people
  • Enjoy social activities like eating out or going to concerts

Regardless of which type of hearing loss you have and what your lifestyle is like, an audiologist can help you choose the right hearing aids for you. The earlier you accept and start utilizing hearing aids, the sooner your life could improve.

Not all hearing aids are the same, and your needs may be different from others you know who use hearing aids. Knowing how to shop for hearing aids and select the best option for your lifestyle and type of hearing loss will give you the best results.