A car isn’t really an impulse buy (unless you’re very, very wealthy). Which means you will probably do a ton of research first. You have a good look at things like gas mileage, price point, and customer reviews. Google is your best friend right now. It is sensible to do this amount of research. You’re about to spend tens of thousands of dollars on something and spend years paying it off (unless, again, you are very rich). So you want to make certain your investment is well spent.
You’ll be thinking about how your purchase best suits your lifestyle and also practical things like safety, gas mileage, etc. What type of vehicle do you want? Do you need a lot of room to carry supplies around? How fast do you want your car to be?
Put another way, to get the most from your new car, you need to assess your options and make some choices. And that’s the same attitude you should take when choosing your hearing aids. They won’t cost tens of thousands of dollars, but they are an investment. Determining which device will best fit your lifestyle and which device works best in general, is the best way to get the most from your investment.
The advantages of hearing aids
The example of the benefits of purchasing hearing aids can be broadly compared with the example of purchasing a car. Hearing aids are pretty awesome!
The advantages of hearing aids, for most people, are more tangible than just helping you hear. With a pair of hearing aids, you can stay connected to the people in your life. You’ll be able to better follow conversations during dinner, listen to your grandchildren tell you about cool dinosaurs, and chit-chat with the cashier at the supermarket.
With all these benefits, it seems sensible that you’d start to ask, “How can I help my hearing aids last longer?” You don’t want those benefits to stop.
Do more costly hearing aids work better?
Some people may think that they can only get a quality hearing aid if they get the highest-priced device.
And, to be sure, hearing aids can be an investment. There’s a reason why some hearing aids are expensive in the first place:
- The technology inside of a hearing aid is very small and very state-of-the-art. That means you’re getting a very potent technological package.
- Hearing aids are also designed to last for quite a while. If you take good care of them this is especially true.
But the most costly model won’t necessarily be your best fit or work the best. There are a lot of factors to consider (including the extent of your hearing loss and, well, how much you can spend!) Some hearing aids will certainly last longer than others. But that isn’t always determined by how expensive the device was in the first place.
In order to keep your hearing aids in tip-top working condition, as with any other purchase, they will need regular care and maintenance. Also, your hearing loss is distinct to you and your hearing aids will have to be calibrated to your specific needs.
Get the proper hearing aids for your hearing loss
So, what are your choices? You’ll be able to choose from numerous different types and styles. You can work with us to figure out which ones are best for you and your hearing needs. Here are the solutions you will have to choose from:
- Completely-in-the-Canal Hearing Aids (CIC): For individuals who want their hearing aids to be discrete and also provide high-quality sound, these hearing aids will be the ideal choice. The only problem is that they tend to have a shorter lifespan and battery life. And some of the most modern functions tend to be missing because of their smaller size.
- In-the-Canal Hearing Aids (ITC): These hearing aids are mostly hidden because they are molded to your ear canal. Because they’re a little larger than CIC models, they might include more high-tech functions. Some of these functions can be a bit tricky to adjust by hand (because the devices are still rather small). If you want your hearing aid to be discrete but also have some advanced functions, this style will be ideal.
- In-the-Ear Hearing Aids: This style of hearing aid is molded to fit completely in your outer ear. A “half shell” version fits in your lower ear and a “full shell” version fits entirely in your ear. If you have complex hearing issues or need more powerful noise control, the more sophisticated technology and larger microphones will make these hearing aids a great option.
- Behind-the-Ear Hearing Aids (BTE): In a sense, BTE hearing aids are the best of both worlds. This type of hearing aid has one part that sits in your ear (that’s the speaker) but transfers all of the bulky electronics to a housing that sits behind your ear. The two parts are connected by a small tube, but for the most part, it’s pretty non-visible. These hearing aids provide many amplification solutions making them quite popular. These types are a good compromise between power and visibility.
- Receiving-in-the-Canal (or in the Ear) Hearing Aids (RIC or RITE): This is much like BTE hearing aids, except the speaker part fits in the ear canal. They have the advantage of decreasing wind noise and are usually less visible.
- Open-Fit Hearing Aids: Even when you’re using the device, low-frequency sounds can still get into the ear. If you have difficulty hearing higher frequencies but low-frequencies are not really a problem, these hearing aids will be a great fit for you. It’s not a good choice for all forms of hearing loss, but it does work well for many individuals.
How about over-the-counter hearing aids?
Another option to think about is OTC or over-the-counter hearing aids. OTC hearing aids work fine in general, much like OTC medications. But it’s likely that OTC hearing aids won’t have the power you need if your hearing loss is more pronounced or complex. In general, OTC hearing aids can’t be specifically calibrated to your hearing in the same way that prescription hearing aids can.
No matter what kind of hearing aid you decide to purchase, it’s always a smart plan to speak with us about what will work best for your particular needs.
Maintenance and repair
After you choose the ideal hearing aid for your hearing requirements, taking care of it is crucial. Just like your car requires oil changes now and then.
So how frequently will your hearing aids need to be assessed? You should have your hearing aid cleaned and properly maintained every six months to a year. This gives you a chance to make sure everything’s working effectively and as it should!
It’s also a good idea to be somewhat familiar with your device’s warranty. If and when you require repair, knowing what’s covered by that warranty and what isn’t can save you some cash! A strong warranty and regular maintenance will help your hearing last as long as possible.
Is there a hearing aid that’s the best?
There’s no single best hearing aid. Every hearing specialist might have a different model that they feel is the best.
Which hearing aids fit your hearing loss requirements will be the ones that are best for you. Just like with a vehicle, for some an SUV will be best, and for others, a minivan will best fit their lifestyles. The same goes with hearing aids, it just depends on your situation.
But you will have an easier time choosing the hearing aid that’s best for you if you are well informed ahead of time. Give us a call to schedule a consultation today!