4 FAQs About Hearing Aids
Although hearing aids seem like simple devices that boost your ability to listen to the world around you, making a decision about which to wear or whether you need one can be tricky. Hearing loss can develop over many years, and so it can sometimes be challenging to tell whether you need one at all. And when you do finally come to the conclusion that you’re ready for a hearing aid, there are often so many choices that it can be tough to figure out which one to use.
Take a look at the following frequently asked questions about hearing aids. They should help give you some additional clarity on this tricky issue.
Will hearing aids reverse my hearing loss?
The primary purpose of hearing aids is to amplify the sound coming into your ears. Most modern hearing aids do this through a combination of both a microphone and speaker. A receiver (usually placed on the outward-facing part of the device) picks up sounds in the surrounding area and sends them to the onboard processor. The built-in processor then turns the sounds into output in the speaker at higher volume. It is this higher volume that improves the hearing of most people.
Whether hearing aids can reverse hearing loss depends on the type of hearing loss you have. Hearing aids can certainly help to rejuvenate the area of the brain responsible for processing sounds in people who have lived for a length of time without being able to hear correctly. And hearing aids can improve hearing loss experienced in presbycusis - a form of hearing loss related to age - but they cannot reverse it entirely.
How do I choose the right hearing aid?
The hearing aid you choose depends on a range of personal factors unique to you. Take a look at the following factors:
- Worried about damage. If you’re concerned about damaging your hearing aid because you play sports or are very active, then you might want to choose an in-the-ear-canal hearing aid which has no external components.
- Need directional sound. Some modern hearing aids come with special microphones which can pick up sounds in specific directions, helping you to focus more on conversations.
- Can’t hear at certain frequencies. If you struggle to hear certain pitches, choose a hearing aid that can be set to amplify certain tones.
- Need connectivity. Modern hearing aids come with phone, TV, WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity.
How can I adjust my hearing aids?
Your audiologist can adjust your hearing aids. Or, if you’re familiar with how they work, you can change the settings yourself. However, it is probably best to calibrate your hearing aid in the presence of a professional who can monitor the effectiveness of any changes that are made.
Do I need a hearing aid?
The best way to find out whether you need a hearing aid is to undertake a hearing test. During a hearing test, a trained, professional audiologist will conduct a range of sound tests and physical examinations to ascertain whether your ears are in good working order.