For hearing aid wearers, windy days can be a problem. Wind can create a most unpleasant communication experience for the wearer of a hearing aid, and even the most expensive hearing aids are not immune to the noise and feedback that often accompany wind. As the wind is unpredictable and often changes direction, it is a challenge for hearing aid manufacturers to design hearing aids that block excessive wind noise while providing a comfortable hearing aid.
People who wear hearing aids list wind noise as one of the most significant problems associated with hearing aids. Wind turbulence physically vibrates hearing aid microphones resulting in a loud rushing sound. Hearing aid wearers often describe this sound like the noise you hear when you blow hard into a microphone. This rushing noise makes comprehending speech a challenge. Noise reduction features on hearing aids are an absolute must for people who wear hearing aids and spend time outdoors.
The Challenge For Manufacturers
Hearing aid manufacturers face obstacles in solving the wind noise problem. Wind noise reduction is possible, but it can also reduce the speech signal in the process. Filters often minimize wind noise in certain frequencies which also include the speech signal. So the challenge is minimizing wind noise while maintaining the volume and clarity of speech.
Coping With Wind
When you face windy days as a hearing aid wearer, there are a few measures you can take to reduce the problems caused by wind. Unfortunately, many hearing aid users turn their hearing aids off during windy days and for the hearing impaired this is never a good option. Your hearing aid may have unique features that reduce the wind noise while enhancing the sounds you would like to hear. Solutions may include the strategic placement of a microphone to avoid external noise or a device with programming for windy weather. Due to their size, shape, and installation, invisible hearing aids have a microphone in the ear which decreases external noise.
- Wear a hat. A simple way to cut down on the irritable noise is to wear a hat. Hats pulled down over the ears can decrease the noise on windy days.
- Use a hearing aid sock. These covers are a thin elastic piece of material that fits snugly over your hearing aid. You can wear your hearing aid like you usually do and have the benefit of noise reduction.
- Time for an upgrade? The latest high-tech hearing aids reduce wind noise while allowing clear speech.
Time For An Upgrade?
If you wear hearing aids and love the outdoors, wind noise reduction is a must. The good news is that modern hearing aids have advanced features that detect the impact of wind blowing into hearing aid microphones and then reduce the amplification of the noise thereby increasing speech intelligibility. Try the helpful tips listed here. If you are still undergoing issues, it may be time for a hearing aid upgrade. A hearing healthcare professional can assist you in finding a modern hearing aid with noise reduction features.