If you’ve determined that you need to get hearing aids, what will you do next? Hearing aids are about to become an essential part of your life, so selecting the right type matters. Quality hearing aids can be purchased from a hearing aid specialist, but the cheaper flimsy ones can only be found on the internet. It’s up to you to decide what you expect from the device and how much you can afford to pay. When searching for hearing aids, what sacrifices are you willing to make.
Cheap Internet Knockoffs Are Not Actually Hearing Aids
Hearing assistance devices that can be purchased from the internet are not really going to save you money and their not actually hearing aids. They are not efficient and they don’t work that well. The money you save on the device itself, you lose by having to constantly replace the batteries, and you will replace them a lot.
Amplifying sound is the only thing these poor-quality devices can do. Modern, quality digital hearing aids combine different technologies to create a device which can be customized to your needs. You can go cheap and get one online but you will miss out on important features.
Your new hearing aids are an investment in your future and you need to see them that way. It’s great to try to save some money, but it’s not a good idea when it comes to something that affects every facet of your life like your hearing. There might be other ways you can get hearing aids if you can’t afford them, so make sure you get what you really need.
Analog Vs. Digital
A better quality, more reliable sound is delivered by digital hearing aids and they’re far more consistent too. If you run across analog hearing aids, move on and shop for the digital units, instead.
If you shop at a reputable hearing aid seller, all of the hearing aids will be digital. You need to be careful because analog devices are still in existence if you don’t know what to look for. Analog means the kind of audio signal the hearing aid gets and the quality. With analog hearing aids, the quality of the sound isn’t consistent.
Finding The Perfect Features
There are actually two sides to hearing aid shopping: features and style. You want a comfortable style that offers features that make your life easier. Some common features to think about include:
- Wireless connectivity
- Direct audio input
- Noise reduction
- Remote controls
- Directional microphones
- Variable programming
- Environmental noise control
- Rechargeable batteries
Take Into Consideration The Different Styles
You will notice, when you get started researching hearing aids, that there are lots of styles to choose from. There is undoubtedly a style that will work for you, and that’s the great news. The various styles of hearing aids include:
- In-the-Ear (ITE)
- Receiver-in-the-Canal (RIC)
- Open Fit
- In-the-Ear (ITE)
- Behind-the-Ear (BTE)
- Receiver-in-the-Ear (RIE)
The names provide a pretty good definition of each style. BTE means “behind the ear” and that’s exactly where the piece goes. An ear-mold sits at the ear’s opening and has clear tubing that connects it to the BTE.
As is obvious by its name, ITE devices go “in the ear”. It’s a single unit that rests in the opening of the ear canal. There is nothing behind the ear. ITC devices are very similar but they go deeper inside the ear, making them less visible.
RIC and RIE, as the name implies, have a receiver unit that sits in the ear and connects by a wire to a piece behind it. These hearing aids are not as obvious as a BTE.
Lastly, open fit units are BTE devices but instead of connecting to an ear-mold, a thin tube goes into the ear canal. This style works well for people who don’t like the feel of something inside their ear.
After taking all of these styles and options into account, it’s time to decide which one that will best fit your needs. For example, Bluetooth is a useful function to have, especially if you use your smartphone or computer a lot. You will save money on replacement batteries if you get a model with a rechargeable battery and a telecoil is great for listening to lectures or seminars.
Lastly, Your Buying Options Should be Taken Into Consideration
You want to purchase your hearing aids from a qualified retailer, one that custom fits the devices and offers a free trial period. Having a chance to try out your new hearing aids before you purchase them will give you confidence that you are making the right choice.
A quality hearing aid has a good warranty so be sure to look into that as well. What kind of coverage does it come with? Do you get a new hearing aid if something goes wrong or will the warranty only cover parts and maybe labor?
Make an appointment with a hearing professional for a checkup and hearing test before you buy your hearing aids. Not all changes to your hearing require hearing aids.