You already realize that you need to get hearing aids, so what now? Finding the correct hearing aids is an important decision because they will play a major part in your life. There are different kinds of hearing aids out there including some pretty flimsy ones that are found only on the Internet. It’s up to you to decide what you want from the device and how much you can afford to pay. When shopping for hearing aids, what sacrifices are you willing to make.
Cheap Internet Imitations Are Not Really Hearing Aids
Cheap hearing assistance devices are not actually the bargain they seem to be. They are not really efficient and they don’t function that well. Batteries will be expensive when you need to replace them constantly.
These cheap devices will help amplify sound, which is one basic function of hearing aids but they don’t do anything else. You get several different technologies in a modern high-quality hearing aid that can be customized to your precise needs. Several important features will be sacrificed if you decide to purchase a cheap online device.
You need to recognize that your new hearing aids will be an investment in your future. It’s great to try to stretch your budget, but not when it concerns something that affects every facet of your life like your hearing. There may be other ways that you can get hearing aids if you can’t afford them, so make sure you get what you really need.
Digital Vs. Analog
Digital hearing aids deliver better quality sound that is much more dependable. If you come across analog hearing aids, move on and shop for the digital units, instead.
Reputable retailers don’t even have analog units anymore. If you don’t know the difference you may confuse an analog hearing aid for a digital. Low-quality analog signals are what the older out-dated hearing aids process. With analog hearing aids, the quality of the sound is very inconsistent.
Selecting The Very Best Features
When you go looking for hearing aids think about the two aspects which are features and style. You want features that make your life easier in a style that is comfortable. Some common features to think about include:
- Environmental noise control
- Variable programming
- Rechargeable batteries
- Remote controls
- Wireless connectivity
- Noise reduction
- Directional microphones
- Direct audio input
Consider the Styles
There are a lot of styles available, as you will find out when you begin researching hearing aids. There is certainly a style that will meet your needs, and that’s the good news. Some of the different styles are:
- Receiver-in-the-Canal (RIC)
- In-the-Ear (ITE)
- Open Fit
- Behind-the-Ear (BTE)
- Receiver-in-the-Ear (RIE)
- In-the-Ear (ITE)
To get a fairly good idea of each style just take a look at the names. BTE hearing aids incorporate a piece that sits behind the ear. It attaches to a clear tube and an ear-mold that rests at the opening of the ear canal.
Alternatively, ITE hearing aids sit, you guessed it, in the ear. This device is at the opening of the ear canal and is just one unit. Nothing goes behind the ear. ITC devices are very similar but go deeper inside the ear, making them harder to see.
RIC devices and RIE hearing aids have a “receiver in the canal” and a “receiver in the ear” respectively, which are then connected to a piece behind the ear. These types of hearing aids are not as obvious as a BTE.
Finally, open fit units are BTE devices but instead of connecting to an ear-mold, a thin tube goes into the ear canal. If you can’t deal with the feeling of something in your ear, this style is a good choice for you.
When you’ve taken all of these styles and options into consideration, it’s time to choose the one that will best fit your needs. For example, Bluetooth is a great function to have, especially if you use your smartphone or computer regularly. You can save money on replacement batteries if you get a model with a rechargeable battery and a telecoil is great for listening to lectures or seminars.
Finally, Consider Your Buying Options
A competent retailer that has a free trial period and offers custom fitting is the best place to purchase your new hearing aids. Having the opportunity to try your new hearing aids before you purchase them will give you confidence that you are making the right choice.
A good warranty will come with a quality hearing aid, make sure to look for that. What does it cover? Some pay only for replacement parts, some cover the labor, as well, and how about a new hearing aid if something goes wrong?
Before buying hearing aids make an appointment with a hearing care specialist for a checkup and hearing test, too. Some changes in your hearing don’t require hearing aids.