Who doesn’t love finding a good bargain? But you should be careful and be aware of little details when it comes to your health.
The names “hearing aid” and “hearing amplifier” might seem similar but they are actually completely different devices. And making the wrong choice could have significant implications for your hearing and your general health.
What is a hearing amplifier?
A little device that goes in your ear, a hearing amplifier raises the volume of outside sound. These are generally really simple, one-dimensional devices which the government classifies as personal sound amplification devices. A hearing amplifier is like cranking the volume up on the world.
These devices are typically not recommended for people with moderate to significant hearing loss because of their one-size-fits-all approach.
Hearing amplifier aren’t hearing aids
It starts to become pretty apparent that hearing aids aren’t the same as hearing amplification devices when you recognize that amplifiers are not recommended for people with even moderate hearing loss. Of course, hearing aids are appropriate for individuals who cope with hearing loss.
Both hearing aids and hearing amplifiers make things louder. But one of these devices has a much higher level of amplification technology and sophistication.
- Hearing aids can be tuned to your environment. The acoustics of any given place will change depending on a lengthy list of factors. Some hearing aids can fine tune to these changes automatically. Others can be tuned using a smartphone or a dedicated device. You will avoid fewer locations because you will be able to hear better in a wider variety of settings as your hearing aids make minute adjustments.
- With hearing aids, only select frequencies of sound are boosted. That’s because people normally lose their hearing one wavelength at a time. Either high-frequency sounds or low-frequency sounds commonly fade first. Hearing aids work to fill in the gaps in your hearing rather than just making everything louder. This selective strategy is much more beneficial for individuals with hearing loss.
- Picking out and amplifying speech is one of the primary functions of a hearing aid. To some extent, that’s due to the uneven way hearing loss progresses, but it’s also because communication is such an important function of your hearing. As a result, hearing aid makers have invested significant resources into enhancing the clarity of speech above all else. There are state-of-the-art algorithms and processes working within hearing aids to make sure that, even in a crowded and noisy space, voices come through clearly.
To put it bluntly, correctly managing hearing loss depends on these capabilities. And these are features that are not present in most personal hearing amplifiers.
Finding the best option at an affordable price
Along with a diminished ability to hear, neglected hearing loss can also result in cognitive decline. Because amplifiers don’t distinguish between frequencies, if you turn them up enough to hear what you’re missing, you’ll probably have it up too loud for other wavelengths….and damage your hearing further. And that’s not good for anyone.
Unless your hearing loss is from earwax, hearing aids and certain surgeries are the only authorized treatment options for hearing loss right now. You won’t save any money long term by neglecting to get treatment for your hearing loss. Untreated hearing loss has been demonstrated to increase your overall healthcare costs more than 40 percent. Luckily, there are affordable solutions. Just ask us.