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The Truth About Hearing Aids

There are various things to regard when buying hearing aids. Determining your level of hearing loss is the first thing you’ll need to regard. To do so, visit  an audiologist for a scheduled hearing test. Your hearing exam will allow you to determine which sort of hearing aid will work for you. Choosing a sort of hearing aid can be complicated because there are a lot of different features. Not surprisingly, there is also the matter of cost to weigh. Hearing aids will cost you anywhere from a couple hundred dollars to a few thousand.

According to information from the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) there are about 28 million people in the United States who have some degree of reduced hearing. The term which describes the severity of hearing loss is ‘degree’. A person with ordinary hearing can decipher sounds throughout the full hearing spectrum, but people who have hearing loss can only understand some sounds or no sound at all. When testing someone’s hearing, sound is calculated in decibels (dB). There are two types of hearing loss – unilateral (one ear) and bilateral (both ears). Here are the guidelines used to ascertain your scope of hearing loss:

Mild = Fifteen to Forty dB

Moderate = Forty to Sixty dB

Severe = 60-90 dB

Profound = over 90 decibels

Behind-the-Ear (aka BTE) hearing aids offer the widest scope of hearing improvement. BTE’s fit behind the ear, but are barely obtrusive. For an even greater range of hearing, earmolds can be added to BTE’s, but the downside is that this is the most detectable configuration. BTE’s with earmolds need to be cleaned regularly because they are prone to wax buildup.

ITE hearing aids – also known as In-the-Ear hearing aids – have room for many features not offered on smaller models. The downside for some wearers of ITE’s is that they are fairly large and necessitate regular cleanup of wax.

A smaller sort of hearing aid known as ITC (In-the-Canal) fits deeper inside the ear canal. They need routine cleaning and have shorter battery lives.

Completely-in-the-Canal (CIC) hearing aids are so small-scale they are barely noticeable. Routine cleaning is necessary and the small size can make them difficult to handle.

You can get hearing aids in either digital or analog. Hearing Aids that are digital can be more pricey, and extra and features like noise reduction add to higher costs.

One exciting option now available to those with hearing disability is a Personal Listening Device. PLD’s are for people with mild to moderate hearing loss, are constructed from hearing aid industry parts, and range in price from $200 to $500.

Once you have determined what your hearing needs are, the options you are looking for, and how much you are willing to pay, there are dozens of brands including Phonak, Siemens, and Starkey, and each has a number of models to choose from. I hope that this article will give you a little insight into beginning your search for better hearing.

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