If you’re not very wealthy, a car really isn’t an impulse purchase. Which means you will most likely do a lot of research first. You look at reviews, you assess prices, and you evaluate gas mileage. (You’re on Google a lot.) It makes sense to do this level of research. For most individuals who aren’t rich, it will take a while to pay off the thousands of dollars you will spend. So you want to be certain it’s worth it!
Not only do you consider the concrete factors (gas mileage, safety, etc), but you’ll also give thought to best fits for your lifestyle. What type of vehicle do you like? How much room do you require for weekly groceries? How much pep do you need to feel when you push down that gas pedal?
So you should take a close look at all of your options and make some informed choices so that you can get the most out of your purchase. And when you’re picking out new hearing aids, it’s essential to have this same mindset. They won’t cost tens of thousands of dollars, but they are an investment. And getting the most from your investment means determining which devices work best, in general, as well as what provides the most for your lifestyle.
The benefits of hearing aids
In just the same way that you can talk about the benefits of a car in a very general way, you can also talk about the benefits of hearing aids in a similarly general way. Hearing aids are a great investment!
The advantages of hearing aids, for most people, are more tangible than just helping you hear. Staying connected with your family and friends will be much easier with a good pair of hearing aids. You’ll have an easier time chatting with the clerk at the pharmacy, listening to a story about dinosaurs over dinner with your grandkids, and enjoying conversations with friends.
It’s only natural that you would want to make your hearing aids last as long as possible given all of the benefits. You want to keep those benefits going!
Do more expensive hearing aids work better?
There may be some individuals out there who would presume that the best way to make your hearing aid work better and last longer is to simply purchase the most high priced device they can.
And, to be sure, hearing aids can be an investment. Here are a couple of reasons why some hearing aids might be expensive:
- Hearing aids are made to include very state-of-the-art technologies, and they have to make those technologies as tiny as possible. That means you’re purchasing an extremely potent technological package.
- Hearing aids are also designed to last for a long time. Particularly if you take care of them.
But that doesn’t mean the most costly option will automatically work best. There are a lot of variables to consider (including the extent of your hearing loss and, well, how much you can spend!) Some hearing aids will undoubtedly last longer than others. But that isn’t always determined by how expensive the device was in the first place.
In order to keep your hearing aids in tip-top working order, as with any other purchase, they will require regular care and maintenance. Also, your hearing loss is distinct to you and your hearing aids will need to be tuned to your exact requirements.
Get the proper hearing aids for your hearing loss
So, what are your options? You’ll be able to pick from numerous different styles and types. You can work with us to figure out which ones are the right choice for you and your hearing needs. Here are the choices you will have to pick from:
- Completely-in-the-Canal Hearing Aids (CIC): These kinds of hearing aids can deliver high-quality sound and are generally quite discrete (perfect for people who want to hide their hearing aids). But with this kind 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 features.
- In-the-Canal Hearing Aids (ITC): These hearing aids are mostly hidden because they are molded to your ear canal. Because they’re slightly larger than CIC models, they may contain more high-tech functions. Some of these features can be a bit tricky to adjust by hand (because the devices are still quite small). Still, ITC models are great for individuals who need more features but still want to be discreet.
- In-the-Ear Hearing Aids: This style of hearing aid is molded to sit completely inside your outer ear. Two styles 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 advanced technology and larger microphones will make these hearing aids the perfect option.
- Behind-the-Ear Hearing Aids (BTE): In a way, BTE hearing aids are the best of both worlds. This style of device has one bit that fits in your ear (that’s the speaker) but moves all of the bulky electronics to a housing that sits behind your ear. The small tube that connects the two elements is still pretty discrete. These hearing aids provide many amplification options making them quite popular. When you want the best of both visibility and power, these devices will be the perfect solution.
- Receiving-in-the-Canal (or in the Ear) Hearing Aids (RIC or RITE): With this design, the speaker part fits in the ear canal but they are otherwise a lot like BTE models. This makes them even less visible, with the additional benefit of reducing things like wind noise.
- Open-Fit Hearing Aids: Open-fit hearing aids tend to allow low-frequency sounds to enter the ear even while you’re hearing the device. If you have problems hearing higher frequencies but low-frequencies are not really an issue, these hearing aids will be a great fit for you. It isn’t a good option for all forms of hearing loss, but it does work well for many people.
What about over-the-counter hearing aids?
Another possibility to think about is OTC or over-the-counter hearing aids. OTC hearing aids work fine in general, much like OTC medications. But if your hearing loss warrants a set of more powerful hearing aids or more specialized hearing aids, OTC devices could fall a bit short. Prescription hearing aids can be calibrated to your specific hearing needs which is an option generally not provided by OTC hearing aids.
The best way to determine what type of hearing aid will be best for you, you should consult with us.
Repair and upkeep
Obviously, once you’ve gone to all the trouble to pick out your perfect hearing aid type, you need to take care of it. Just like your car requires oil changes now and then.
So how frequently will your hearing aids need to be checked? You should get your hearing aid cleaned and properly maintained every six months to a year. This gives you a chance to be certain everything’s working properly and as it should!
It’s also a good idea to be somewhat familiar with your device’s warranty. You will save some cash when you are familiar with what is and isn’t covered. So now you’re wondering: how can I make my hearing aids last longer? The answer is sometimes simple: good maintenance and a great warranty.
So… what’s the best hearing aid?
There’s no single best hearing aid. If you go to twelve different hearing specialists and request the “best” hearing aid, they might provide you with twelve different models.
Which hearing aids fit your hearing loss needs will be the ones that are best for you. Some individuals will go for a minivan, others for an SUV. The same goes for hearing aids, it all depends on your specific situation.
But the more you know ahead of time and the better informed you are, the easier it will be to get the hearing aids that are perfect for you. Schedule a hearing exam with us today!