Which Hearing Aid is Right for me?
It is estimated that nearly 29 million American adults could benefit from using hearing aids. If you find you have more difficulty hearing than you used to, you are likely experiencing hearing loss and should consider visiting an audiologist for a hearing test.
Most hearing aid wearers find these devices dramatically improve their quality of life, but with so many different styles and options on the market, it can be difficult to know which is right for you. The factors to consider when you are choosing a hearing aid are listed below and vary anywhere from your hearing loss type to what features are most important to you. Book an appointment with an audiologist in your area today and they will be able to talk you through all of these elements and help you come to the best decision.
- Your personal audiogram results: This is where your audiologist comes in; the first thing they will do is administer a hearing test to determine the level and balance of your hearing loss. The results will enable you and your audiologist to construct a short-list of suitable devices.
- Technology: Generally speaking, the more advanced the technology the higher the price tag will be; so it is a factor that should be considered when choosing hearing aids. Your audiologist will be able to make recommendations based on which technology they feel will benefit you most. It may be that a simpler device will serve you just fine, or it may be that your personal hearing requirements indicate the need for a more advanced model.
- Size: Generally speaking, the most powerful hearing aids are the largest. If your audiogram results show that you have mild-to-moderate hearing loss, your audiologist will likely recommend smaller devices to you. If your hearing loss is more severe you may benefit more from a larger and more powerful device. Keep in mind that larger devices are more discreet than they once were; your audiologist will be able to discuss all the available options with you.
- Extra features: Most hearing aids can be customised with optional extra features, such as directional microphones to help you focus on a specific source of sound in a noisy environment. Some of the more discrete hearing aids do not come with the option of extra features due to their smaller size; this is something you should discuss with your audiologist if you are considering a smaller model.
- Price: As mentioned above, the most advanced hearing aids are usually the most expensive. However, as your audiologist will tell you, not every hearing aid user needs a highly advanced device to appreciate better hearing. There is usually an option to suit every budget.
- Lifestyle: Finally, you may want to discuss lifestyle factors such as hobbies and interests with your audiologist; these can sometimes have a bearing on which hearing aid model is most suitable for you. If you spend a lot of time in wet conditions you may consider a water-resistant model, or if you regularly use wireless devices a Bluetooth-compatible hearing aid could be a good option.
Selecting a hearing aid will be an exciting and important investment. With the assistance of your audiologist and considerations of your lifestyle and budget, you’ll be able to find the right device to help you hear better!