4 Tips to Choose the Right Hearing Aid
If you’re thinking about hearing aids, it’s likely you’ve noticed some decline in your hearing. Hearing aids can make a big improvement in your quality of life. Today there are many different styles and features available. Here are four tips to choose the right hearing aid.
See an audiologist
It’s important to see an audiologist for a hearing exam. While you can buy hearing aids “off the shelf,” these units are not specifically programmed to help your unique hearing loss. Additionally, many of these hearing aids are amplifiers, making sound louder, not more understandable. Your audiologist has the education, training and guidance to evaluate your test results and help determine which features are best for you. Once you have your exam results, your audiologist will meet with you to discuss options to improve your hearing health and work within your budget.
Review the types of devices
There are several styles of hearing aids and each has benefits. The most common types are: invisible in canal, in the canal, in the ear and behind the ear.
- Invisible-in-canal devices are so small they can’t be seen. They sit inside the ear canal and are used for mild-to-moderate hearing loss. It may be difficult to adjust the volume on this type of hearing aid, and the battery compartment is very small.
- In-the-canal hearing aids sit in the “bowl” of your outer ear. These are used for mild-to-moderate hearing loss.
- In-the-ear devices sit inside the “bowl” of your outer ear. These hearing aids are a bit larger and provide more features. It’s a very common style and works well for just about any type of hearing loss.
- Behind-the-ear hearing aids may be open or have a receiver in the ear. These work for all types of hearing loss.
Evaluate your needs
Working with your audiologist, you can select hearing aids with the best features to improve your hearing. Digital hearing aids offer many options including directional microphones, noise and feedback reduction, automatic volume control and much more. Evaluate your lifestyle. Do you play a lot of sports? Do you talk on the phone a lot? Do you have arthritis? There are styles available that assist with all these things.
Keep cost in mind
It’s important to be straightforward with your audiologist when it comes to your budget. Some special options may be necessary for you while other choices may be “extras.” Insurance typically does not cover the cost of hearing aids, but check your plan to be certain.
Hopefully, these four tips to choose the right hearing aid will give you some background to help understand the types of hearing aids offered and how they can fit your budget and needs. Your audiologist is there to guide you through the choices to make the decision on a style that’s right for you.