Top Features of Hearing Aids

The technology featured in today’s modern hearing aid devices enables wearers to hear clearer sounds. Many require less maintenance and feature a longer life span then those hearing aids made long ago. If you're experiencing hearing loss, you can make an informed buying decision when it comes to selecting a hearing aid. Start by taking a few moments to review the top features of hearing aids as well as some purchasing tips.

Digital Noise Reduction (DNR)

Noise reduction is a feature of all hearing aids. It helps you identify words faster and improves listening-effort recall. When you recall words you hear immediately after they are spoken, you can respond faster.

Directional Microphone Systems

Directional microphone systems in hearing aids amplify sounds that you hear that come from in front of you. This feature is useful in noisy environments where there’s a lot of background noise.

Batteries: Rechargeable

You save money when you recharge batteries in your hearing aid instead frequently purchasing new batteries. Maintenance becomes easier too because you’re not installing batteries continually.

The Telecoil

Hearing aids have telecoils so you can better hear what the speaker is saying on a telephone. The concept is the same in an induction loop (also known as a hearing loop) system in a movie theatre or theatrical stage where plays are performed. Telecoils help you hear the movie, play or speaker to a greater degree.

Connects Wirelessly

Some hearing aids are Bluetooth-device compatible. They can interface with televisions, cell phones, and music player equipment.

Remote Control Devices

This feature allows you to adjust your hearing aid’s settings without having to touch your hearing aid.

Audio Input

Use the audio input to connect a corded device such as your television, computer, or music player.

Variable Pre-programming Storage Settings

A time saver, this feature allows you to store different settings for the variety of devices and environments that you use along with your hearing aid.

Noise Cancellation

Some hearings aids block wind noise or background noise, or both. This type of noise cancellation feature is meant to enhance your listening focus.

Synchronized Hearing Aids

If you wear two hearing aids, you can program just one and then use a synchronization feature. This way you won’t have to manually adjust the settings for the other hearing aids.

Hearing Aid Purchasing Tips

Now that you've reviewed the top features of hearing aids, a few more things might help save money in the long run. Before you shop, consider these purchasing tips:

Visit Your Doctor

Be sure that there isn’t a curable underlying cause for your hearing loss. Rule out an ear infection, or earwax buildup.

Visit a Doctor-Recommended Audiologist

As your doctor for a referral for an audiologist so you can have a hearing (audiometry) test performed. The audiologist will test your inner, middle, and outer ear parts to measure hearing loss or nerve damage.

Try Before You Buy

Get a trial period option in writing. Ask if the cost of the trial goes towards the purchase price if you decide to buy the hearing aid. You want to be sure you can get used to the device and that you’ve made the right choice.

Keep the Future in Mind

As you age, your level of hearing loss may stay the same or become worse. Just in case of the latter, select a hearing aid that is able to upgrade with more power if you need it.

Warranty

Your hearing aid should come with a warranty that includes at a minimum, coverage for labor and parts for a certain period. Office visits might also be included. Read the warranty in its entirety to find out the details.

Don’t Fall for False Claims

Hearings aids may improve your ability to hear, but none will totally eliminate background or wind noise. Stay away from those advertisers that claim the impossible.

Prepare for the Cost

The price of your hearing aid might cost at least $1,500. Some are thousands of dollars more when you factor in the fees of the professionals, remote controls, hearing aid features you select as your options, and the accessories for your hearing aid as well.

Check your private insurance policy, as it may cover part or all of the cost of your hearing aid. Children who need hearing aids may be covered by private insurance. It's mandatory in many states.

Medicare doesn’t cover hearing aids, but the Veterans Administration (VA) may cover the cost of your hearing aid if you’re a veteran.

Hearing aids were designed to help you to hear more clearly if you're experiencing hearing loss. Technology advancements enable today’s hearing aid models to feature many options. Because of this, you have plenty of choices available to select the right model with the features that meets your needs.