We all enjoy a good bargain. But when it involves your health, be careful what you purchase and keep your eye on the little details.
The names “hearing aid” and “hearing amplifier” might seem similar but they are actually very different devices. And making the wrong selection could have significant ramifications for your hearing and your general health.
What is a hearing amplifier?
A small device that goes in your ear, a hearing amplifier raises the volume of outside sound. These are generally very simple, one-dimensional devices which the government categorizes as personal sound amplification devices. A hearing amplifier is like cranking the volume up on the world.
Because of their one-size-fits-all approach, hearing amplifiers aren’t recommended for people who have moderate to significant hearing loss.
Hearing amplifier aren’t hearing aids
It begins to become pretty apparent that hearing aids aren’t the same as hearing amplification devices when you recognize that amplifiers are not recommended for people with even moderate hearing loss. Hearing aids, obviously, are recommended for people with hearing loss.
Both hearing aids and hearing amplifiers make things louder. But one of these devices has a much higher level of amplification technology and sophistication.
- Picking out and amplifying speech is one of the primary functions of a hearing aid. Because communication is so central in our lives and also because of the irregular way hearing loss progresses, this is an essential function. So this function has been prioritized by hearing aid producers who have put significant resources into enhancing it. In order to make certain voices come through clearly even in a noisy room, advanced technology and algorithms are packed inside of modern hearing aids.
- Whatever environment you find yourself, your hearing aids can calibrate to it. There are numerous variables that will determine the exact acoustics of a space. Some hearing aids can fine tune to these changes automatically. A dedicated device or smartphone can tune hearing aids that don’t do it automatically. You will avoid fewer places because you will be able to hear better in a wider variety of places as your hearing aids make little adjustments.
- Hearing aids are made to select and boost certain frequencies of sound. That’s because people normally lose their hearing one frequency at a time. Wavelengths at the higher and lower end of the spectrum are commonly the first to go. Instead of making everything louder, hearing aids work to plug holes in what you’re hearing. For individuals who have hearing loss, this selective approach is more effective.
To put it bluntly, properly managing hearing loss depends on these capabilities. In most cases, personal amplifiers don’t have these abilities.
Finding the best solution at an affordable price
Along with a decreased ability to hear, untreated hearing loss can also result in mental decline. With amplifiers, you’re likely to do more damage to your hearing because the device doesn’t distinguish frequencies and will most likely turn everything up to unsafe levels. And that isn’t good for anyone.
Unless your hearing loss is from earwax, hearing aids and certain surgeries are the only approved treatment options for hearing loss right now. You won’t save any money in the long run by failing to get treatment for your hearing loss. Overall healthcare costs have been shown to increase by over 40% with untreated hearing loss. The good news is, there are budget friendly options. Just ask us.