If you’re in the market for a new pair of hearing aids, congratulations! This is an exciting time for hearing aid technology. In recent years, hearing aid manufacturers have incorporated consumer demands for smarter and sleeker hearing aids. If this is your first ever pair of hearing aids, we understand that it can be overwhelming to sort through all of the options on the market. Even if you’re a veteran hearing aid user, there may be so much new stuff out there you don’t know where to begin. Here, we provide a guide to buying new hearing aids.
Get Your Hearing Tested
If you are new to hearing aids, chances are you’ve just had your hearing tested. This means you are equipped with the information you need to begin the process. Our team at Moore Audiology is here to support you through the selection process based on the results of your audiogram.
If you haven’t had your hearing tested in some time, it would greatly benefit the hearing aid fitting process if you updated your audiogram results. It is recommended that people over the age of 50 get their hearing tested annually, but even if you’re not, it is important to have your most current hearing abilities at hand when selecting new hearing aids. To schedule an appointment for a hearing test, contact us at Moore Audiology.
Access Your Lifestyle
Keep in mind that you will be wearing your hearing aids every day, from morning until night. What does an average day look like for you? What are special accommodations you may have to consider when it comes to your job or your leisure activities?
Are you an avid runner or swimmer? You may want to consider hearing aids with a higher IP rating, which keeps them free of moisture. Are you a professional musician who spends a lot of time in the studio or on stage? You may want hearing aids that offer specialized musician features, providing a richer high-fidelity sound for live and recorded music. Do you spend a lot of time on the road, making phone calls? Look into a pair of hearing aids with wireless streaming capabilities so you can drive hands-free.
These are just a few examples of the things you can desire from your hearing aids. When you come visit us at Moore Audiology, fill us in on your lifestyle and we’ll help you select the most compatible pair.
Size & Style
In the same way there are many combinations of technological features, there are many combinations of hearing aid sizes and styles. Here’s a quick overview:
In-the-Ear: Traditional ITE hearing aids are worn on the surface of your ear – they’re the ones you can see most clearly and are often a tone that matches your skin color. These are available in half or full shell. If you wear eyeglasses, these are convenient option. However, if you have dexterity issues, they may be hard to control as their buttons are small and attached to the aid.
In-canal: There are several different hearing aids that rest in your ear canals. Completely-in-canal hearing aids and invisible-in-canal hearing aids are inserted in your ear canal and are usually controlled through an app on a smart phone or remote control. These are great for people with active lifestyles and lower degrees of hearing loss.
Behind-the-ear: Currently, BTE hearing aids are the most popular kind of hearing aid style. BTE hearing aids consist of two parts: a small plastic component – often very tiny in size and therefore discreet – that sits on the back of your ear and houses all of the electronic parts; and a plastic tubing that rests in your ear canal, funneling sound to your ears. These are controlled through a smart phone or remote control.
These days, hearing aids are fast and sophisticated with smart processing platforms that make automatic adjustments to your listening experience. With automatic hearing aids, you’ll have a seamless and natural listening experience. Most hearing aids on the market are now digital and fully automatic.
Most hearing aids also offer some form of streaming, whether it is through Bluetooth or an extra accessory from the hearing aid manufacturer. Audio streaming is an excellent addition to hearing aids, as they give you direct access to sounds from your phone – phone calls, music, movies, and other media – and they also offer the option of geo-tagging. With your phone’s GPS, your locations are archived with your personal listening preferences; when you return to these places, your hearing aids will automatically adjust to your saved preferences.
Ready to learn more about the latest hearing aid options? Give us a call at Moore Audiology today to schedule a consultation.