Woman suffering from hearing loss choosing a hearing aid.

If you’ve recognized that you need to invest in hearing aids, what’s your next move? Hearing aids are going to become an essential part of your life, so choosing the right kind makes a difference. Quality hearing aids can be purchased from a hearing aid specialist, but the cheaper flimsy ones can be found only on the internet. Only you know how much you can afford to spend and what quality of hearing aids you are willing to invest in. When shopping for hearing aids, what sacrifices are you willing to make.

Cheap Internet Imitations Are Not Actually Hearing Aids

Despite the fact that they seem to be a bargain, those internet hearing assistance devices will end up costing you more. They don’t perform very well or very efficiently. What you save when you buy the device itself, you end up losing because you have to constantly replace the batteries, and you will replace them a lot.

Amplifying sound is the only thing these low-quality devices do. Customization to your specific needs can be accomplished with the integrated technologies found inside of a modern quality digital hearing aid. Several essential features will be sacrificed if you choose to purchase a cheap online device.

You need to see your new hearing aids for what they are – an investment in your future. It’s great to try to stretch your budget, but it’s not a good idea when it concerns something that affects every aspect of your life like your hearing. There might be other ways that you can get hearing aids if you can’t afford them, so make sure you get the ones you really need.

Digital Vs. Analog

Digital hearing aids deliver better quality sound that is more reliable. Analog units are outdated and are not worth considering.

Reputable retailers don’t even have analog devices anymore. It’s important to know analog devices are still out there, though, and to educate yourself about the difference. Low-quality analog signals are what the older out-dated hearing aids process. With analog hearing aids, the quality of the sound isn’t consistent.

Selecting The Perfect Features

When you go shopping for hearing aids think about the two elements which are features and style. You want features that make your life easier in a style that is comfortable. A few common features to think about include:

  • Remote controls
  • Wireless connectivity
  • Direct audio input
  • Noise reduction
  • Telecoils
  • Rechargeable batteries
  • Directional microphones
  • Synchronization
  • Bluetooth
  • Environmental noise control
  • Variable programming

Think about the Styles

There are many styles available, as you will find out when you start researching hearing aids. Thankfully, there are so many styles to pick from that finding a style which works for your situation is almost guaranteed. The various styles of hearing aids include:

  • In-the-Ear (ITE)
  • Receiver-in-the-Ear (RIE)
  • Open Fit
  • Behind-the-Ear (BTE)
  • In-the-Ear (ITE)
  • Receiver-in-the-Canal (RIC)

The names give a pretty good definition of each style. BTE means “behind the ear” and that’s just where the piece goes. It attaches to clear tubing and an ear-mold that rests at the opening of the ear canal.

As is apparent by its name, ITE devices go “in the ear”. This device is at the opening of the ear canal and is just one unit. There is nothing behind the ear. ITC devices are very similar but they go deeper into 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. Both styles tend to be less noticeable than BTE hearing aids.

Lastly, open fit units are BTE devices but rather than connecting to an ear-mold, a tiny tube goes into the ear canal. If you don’t like the feeling of having something in your ear, this format is a good choice for you.

Looking at all of these options, you need to decide which style and options will fit your needs the most. Bluetooth capability, for instance, is a feature you would want if you talk on your phone or a computer regularly. Rechargeable batteries save you money on replacement batteries and telecoil is great if you have to listen to lectures or seminars a lot.

Finally, Consider Your Buying Options

Most qualified retailers will offer custom fitting and a free trial period. That’s where you will want to go to buy your hearing aids. Having a chance to try out your new hearing aids before you buy them will give you confidence that you are making the correct decision.

A good warranty will come with a quality hearing aid, so don’t overlook that. What’s covered? Some pay only for replacement parts, some cover the labor, as well, and what about a new hearing aid if something goes wrong?

Make an appointment with a hearing specialist for a checkup and hearing test before you purchase your hearing aids. Some changes in your hearing don’t call for purchasing hearing aids.

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