A car isn’t really an impulse buy (unless you’re really wealthy). Which means you will probably do a ton of research first. You take a good look at things such as gas mileage, price point, and customer reviews. Google is your best friend right now. This amount of research makes sense! For most individuals who aren’t wealthy, it will take a long time to pay off the thousands of dollars you’re about to spend. So you want to make certain your investment is well spent.
Not only do you look at the objective factors (gas mileage, safety, etc), but you’ll also think about best fits for your lifestyle. What type of vehicle do you like? How much room do you require for weekly supplies? How fast do you want your car to be?
In other words, to get the most from your new car, you need to evaluate your options and make some decisions. And when you’re picking out new hearing aids, it’s essential to have this same mindset. They’re still an investment even though they cost much less than a new car. Figuring out which device will fit your lifestyle best and which device works best overall, is the best way to get the most out of your investment.
The advantages of hearing aids
In exactly the same way that you can discuss the benefits of a car in very general terms, you can also talk about the benefits of hearing aids in a similarly general way. Hearing aids are a wonderful investment!
The benefits of hearing aids, for most people, are more tangible than simply helping you hear. Staying involved with your friends and family 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 tale about dinosaurs at the dinner table with your grandchildren, and enjoying conversations with friends.
With all these benefits, it stands to reason that you’d start to ask, “How can I help my hearing aids last longer?” You want to keep those benefits coming!
Are higher quality hearing aids always more expensive?
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 just buy the most high priced device possible.
Hearing aids are certainly an investment. There’s a reason why some devices are expensive in the first place:
- Hearing aids are designed to include very sophisticated technologies, and they need to make those technologies as small as possible. So the package you’re paying for is very technologically potent.
- They’re designed to be long-lasting. Especially if you take care of them.
But that doesn’t mean the most expensive option will inevitably work best. How severe your hearing loss is and, of course, what you can afford are a couple of the variables to think about. Some hearing aids will undoubtedly last longer than others. But that isn’t always dictated by how costly the device was in the first place.
In order to keep your hearing aids in tip-top working order, as with any other investment, they will need routine care and maintenance. What’s more, your hearing aids will have to be tuned to your ears and adjusted for your specific level of hearing loss.
Make certain you get the correct hearing aids for you
What options do you have? You’ll be able to pick from numerous different styles and types. We can help you figure out which hearing aids will be best for your hearing requirements. Here are the choices you will have to choose from:
- Completely-in-the-Canal Hearing Aids (CIC): These types of hearing aids can deliver high-quality sound and are typically quite discrete (perfect for individuals who want to hide their hearing aids). The only problem is that they tend to have a shorter longevity and battery life. And some of the most state-of-the-art functions are typically missing because of their smaller size.
- 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 larger than CIC models. Some of these functions can be somewhat tricky to adjust by hand (because the devices are still rather small). If you want your hearing aid to be discrete but also include some advanced features, this style will be appropriate.
- In-the-Ear Hearing Aids: These devices are also molded to your ears. No part of the device sits inside your ear canal, it all fits in your outer ear. A “half shell” version fits in your lower ear and a “full shell” version fits totally in your ear. If you have complex hearing issues or need more powerful noise control, the more sophisticated technology and larger microphones will make these hearing aids the perfect choice.
- Behind-the-Ear Hearing Aids (BTE): In a sense, BTE hearing aids are the best of both worlds. This style of hearing aid has one part that sits in your ear (that’s the speaker) but moves all of the bulky electronics to a housing that sits behind your ear. The little tube that connects the two parts is still fairly discrete. These hearing aids offer many amplification options making them quite popular. When you want the best of both visibility and power, these devices will be the perfect option.
- Receiving-in-the-Canal (or in the Ear) Hearing Aids (RIC or RITE): This is a lot like BTE hearing aids, except the speaker part sits in the ear canal. This makes them even less visible, with the added advantage of decreasing things like wind noise.
- Open-Fit Hearing Aids: Even when you’re using the device, low-frequency sounds can still get into the ear. If you have trouble hearing higher frequencies but low-frequencies are not really an issue, these hearing aids will be a good fit for you. It’s not a good option for all forms of hearing loss, but it does work well for many individuals.
Pros and Cons of over-the-counter hearing aids
Another option to think about is OTC or over-the-counter hearing aids. OTC hearing aids work okay 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 might fall a bit short. Prescription hearing aids can be calibrated to your specific hearing needs which is a feature generally not available with OTC hearing aids.
No matter what kind of hearing aid you choose to buy, it’s always a smart idea to speak with us about what will work best for your particular requirements.
Repair and upkeep
Of course, once you’ve taken all of the steps to select your perfect hearing aid type, you should take care of it. This is, once again, like a car which also requires maintenance.
So how frequently will your hearing aids need to be assessed? You should get your hearing aid cleaned and properly maintained every six months to a year. By doing this you can be certain everything is in good working condition.
You should also get familiar with your warranty. If and when you need repair, knowing what’s covered by that warranty and what isn’t can save you some cash! So now you’re wondering: how can I make my hearing aids last longer? The answer is sometimes simple: good maintenance and a strong warranty.
Is there a hearing aid that’s the best?
There is no single best all-time hearing aid. If you go to twelve different hearing specialists and request the “best” hearing aid, they may provide you with twelve different models.
Which hearing aids fit your hearing loss requirements will be the ones that are best for you. Just like with a vehicle, for some an SUV will be best, and for others, a minivan will best fit their lifestyles. It all just depends, and the same is true for hearing aids.
But you will have an easier time finding the hearing aid that’s best for you if you are well informed beforehand. Schedule a hearing assessment with us today!