If you’re not very wealthy, a car isn’t really an impulse purchase. So a great deal of research is probably the first step you take. You check out reviews, you assess prices, and you evaluate gas mileage. Google is your best friend right now. This level of research is logical! You’re about to spend tens of thousands of dollars on something and spend years paying for it (unless, again, you are really wealthy). So you want to make sure it’s worth it!
You’ll be thinking about how your purchase best suits your lifestyle and also practical things like safety, gas mileage, etc. What type of vehicle do you want? Do you require a lot of space to carry things around? How much power do you need to feel when you push down that gas pedal?
So you need to have a close look at all of your options and make some informed choices so that you can get the most out of your investment. And when you’re picking out new hearing aids, it’s important to have this same mindset. They’re still an investment although they cost much less than a new car. And getting the most from your investment means figuring out which devices work best, in general, as well as what provides the most for your lifestyle.
The benefits of hearing aids
The example of the benefits of investing in hearing aids can be broadly compared with the example of buying a car. Hearing aids are pretty great!
The advantages of hearing aids, for most individuals, are more tangible than just helping you hear. With a set of hearing aids, you can stay connected to the people in your life. You’ll be able to more easily follow conversations at the dinner table, listen to your grandkids tell you about cool dinosaurs, and converse with the cashier at the supermarket.
With all these benefits, it stands to reason that you’d start to ask, “How can I make my hearing aids last longer?” You don’t want those benefits to stop.
Are higher quality hearing aids always more expensive?
Some individuals might assume that they can only get a quality hearing aid if they get the highest-priced device.
Hearing aids are definitely an investment. There’s a reason why some devices are costly in the first place:
- The technology inside of a hearing aid is very small and very state-of-the-art. That means you’re purchasing an extremely potent technological package.
- Hearing aids are also made to last for quite a while. Especially if you take care of them.
But the most expensive model won’t necessarily be your best fit or work the best. There are lots of variables to think about (including the extent of your hearing loss and, well, how much you can spend!) Do some hearing aids last longer than others? Sure! But the price of the device isn’t always the deciding factor.
In order to keep your hearing aids in tip-top working order, as with any other investment, they will require regular care and maintenance. What’s more, your hearing aids will have to be tuned to your ears and calibrated for your distinct level of hearing loss.
Make certain you get the correct hearing aids for you
So, what are your options? When it comes to hearing aids, you’ll have a number of different styles and types to choose from. We can help you identify which hearing aids will be best for your hearing needs. But in general, here’s what you’ll have to choose from:
- Completely-in-the-Canal Hearing Aids (CIC): For individuals who want their hearing aids to be discrete and also deliver high-quality sound, these hearing aids will be the ideal choice. But with this type of hearing aid, battery life, and overall lifespan is often shorter. The small size also means you won’t get some of the most sophisticated functions.
- In-the-Canal Hearing Aids (ITC): These hearing aids are specifically molded to fit your ear canal, which makes them mostly hidden. They will typically contain more high-tech functions being a little bigger than CIC models. These devices are still rather small and some of the functions can be a little tricky to manipulate by hand. Even still, ITC models are great for individuals who require more features but still want to be discreet.
- In-the-Ear Hearing Aids: This style of hearing aid is molded to sit entirely inside your outer ear. Two types are available (full shell, which fits the entirety of your ear, or half shell, which sits in the lower ear). If you have complex hearing problems or need more powerful noise control, the more sophisticated technology and larger microphones will make these hearing aids a great choice.
- Behind-the-Ear Hearing Aids (BTE): The speaker of this device sits in your ear and the more bulky electronic part goes behind your ear making them the best of both worlds in a way. The small tube that connects the two parts is still rather discrete. These hearing aids provide many amplification choices making them quite popular. These kinds are a good compromise between power and visibility.
- Receiving-in-the-Canal (or in the Ear) Hearing Aids (RIC or RITE): With this design, the speaker part sits in the ear canal but they are otherwise similar to BTE models. They have the benefit of reducing wind noise and are usually less visible.
- Open-Fit Hearing Aids: Even when you’re using the device, low-frequency sounds can still get into the ear. If you have problems hearing higher frequencies but low-frequencies are not really an issue, these hearing aids will be a good fit for you. Though it works well for many individuals, it won’t be a good choice for everybody.
What about over-the-counter hearing aids?
Another possibility to think about is OTC or over-the-counter hearing aids. The difficulty is that OTC hearing aids are kind of like OTC medications, they work fine in a basic way. But it’s likely that OTC hearing aids won’t have the power you require if your hearing loss is more advanced or complex. In general, OTC hearing aids can’t be specifically calibrated to your hearing like prescription hearing aids can.
Regardless of what kind of hearing aid you choose to buy, it’s always a smart plan to consult us about what might work best for your specific requirements.
Repair and maintenance
Obviously, once you’ve taken all of the steps to select your perfect hearing aid type, you need to take care of it. This is, once again, like a car which also needs maintenance.
So, now you’re thinking: how often should my hearing aids be checked? Generally, you should schedule a routine maintenance and cleaning appointment for your hearing aids every six-to-twelve months. This gives you a chance to be certain everything’s working effectively and as it should!
It’s also not a bad idea to be fairly familiar with your device’s warranty. You will save some money when you are aware of what is and isn’t covered. A strong warranty and regular upkeep will help your hearing last as long as possible.
Is there a hearing aid that’s the best?
There is no single greatest all-time hearing aid. Every hearing specialist may have a different model that they think is the best.
The secret is to choose the best hearing aid for you and for your personal requirements. Some families will go with a minivan, others for an SUV. The same goes for hearing aids, it all depends on your situation.
But the more you know beforehand and the better informed you are, the easier it will be to find the hearing aids that are perfect for you. Schedule a hearing test with us today!