Benefits of Hearing Aids
Hearing aids, as their name suggests, are devices that help improve hearing. Hearing aids do not restore normal hearing, but they can dramatically help make hearing a lot easier.
Modern day hearing aids use highly sophisticated and powerful digital circuits to process incoming sounds.
How Can Hearing Aids Help Me?
The are many benefits to hearing aids.
1. The first and most obvious, is being able to hear better.
You may notice that you're hearing sounds that you have not heard in a long time such as leaves rustling in the wind, birds singing, the doorbell ringing, rain drops and a renewed appreciation for music to just name a few. The types of sounds you will be able to regain by having hearing aids largely depends on the amount of hearing loss you have to begin with.
2. Improved Communication
Hearing is an essential part of oral communication. Not being able to hear at home, at work or at a social gathering can lead to frustration, awkwardness, mental fatigue and a general sense of isolation. By contrast, hearing enables you to participate in conversations, hear your spouse, friends, grandchildren and be more engaged with the world of sound. Hearing aids can help you achieve this by bridging the communication gap caused by hearing loss.
3. Prevent Auditory Deprivation
The lack of auditory stimulation can lead to what's known as auditory deprivation. With hearing loss, your ears are in a sense "starved" of sound. Over time and without the proper treatment at an early stage, the hearing nerves and the areas of the brain responsible for hearing are weakened and this can significantly limit the potential benefit from hearing aids. It is very important that you seek help at an early stage if you begin to notice hearing difficulties.
4. Reduced Auditory Fatigue
When a sense organ is working well, we often take its function for granted. We don't realize the amount of work it actually takes the brain to process the incoming information. Your brain decides from the hearing information it receives from the ears what information is important and what is not. When hearing loss is involved, the information received by your brain is incomplete or unclear making the distinction between important and unimportant information more challenging. This extra effort can be mentally exhausting.
5. Masking of Tinnitus
Some people experience a perception of sound in their ears or head for which there is no obvious external source. This is known as tinnitus and it can vary in pitch but for many, it sounds like a high-pitched ringing. Often tinnitus and hearing loss go hand in hand, but this isn't always the case. For those with hearing loss, the amplification provided by the hearing aids can mask out the tinnitus and provide the sufferer with relief. For those with only tinnitus and no hearing loss, there are ear-worn devices and alternative means of therapy. In any case, before any treatment regimen is begun, the underlying cause of the tinnitus must first be investigated.
All of the above are ways in which hearing aids can greatly increase social and personal satisfaction, leading to enhanced quality of life.
Should I Wear One Hearing Aid or Two?
If the hearing loss is in each ear, then a hearing aid in each ear is needed. However, some people have a one-sided hearing loss in which case a hearing aid is only needed in the affected ear. If you have a hearing loss in both ears but only wear one hearing aid, your hearing will be unbalanced between the two ears and this is more likely going to lead to an unsuccessful outcome even in the ear with the hearing aid.
Wearing two hearing aids when indicated also helps you to know where sounds are coming from as well as being able to hear better in background noise. The two ears work together like a team - they can each hear separately, but they work better together.
Are Hearing Aids Costly?
Hearing aids vary in price depending on the style and level of technology. Most importantly, the style and level of technology should be guided by your personal hearing and lifestyle needs and the complexity of your hearing loss. A basic hearing aid that is properly and expertly fitted, is far better than an advanced hearing aid that is poorly fitted. It is therefore important that you seek professional advice from a registered and skilled Audiologist who can help you find hearing aids that are just right for you.
At Sonaris, our Audiologists have the knowledge and expertise to help you select hearing aids that are right for you. Our primary focus is to help you find the best possible hearing solution that balances your hearing and lifestyle needs with your budget.