Who doesn’t love finding a good bargain? But you should be careful and watch out for little details when it comes to your health.
The names “hearing aid” and “hearing amplifier” might seem similar but they are actually completely different devices. And your overall hearing and health could suffer severe consequences if you make the wrong choice about this.
What is a hearing amplifier?
A hearing amplifier is a small device that, when put in your ear, increases the volume of the sounds around you. These tend to be really simple, one-dimensional devices which the government categorizes as personal sound amplification devices. A hearing amplifier is like turning the volume of the world up.
Because of their one-size-fits-all strategy, hearing amplifiers are not appropriate for individuals who have moderate to significant hearing loss.
Hearing amplifier aren’t hearing aids
Once consumers learn that hearing amplifiers are not suggested for people with even modest hearing loss, the differences between the two devices start to become pretty stark. Hearing aids, obviously, are recommended for people with hearing loss.
Both kinds of devices are capable of raising the volume of external sound. But one of these devices has a much higher degree of amplification technology and sophistication.
- Hearing aids are designed to select and boost specific wavelengths of sound. Because hearing loss normally advances wavelength by wavelength. Frequencies at the higher and lower end of the scale are usually the first to go. Rather than 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.
- Picking out and amplifying speech is one of the main functions of a hearing aid. Because communication is so essential in our lives and also because of the uneven way hearing loss progresses, this is an essential function. As a result, hearing aid manufacturers have invested enormous resources into improving the clarity of speech above everything else. There are sophisticated algorithms and processes working inside of hearing aids to ensure that, even in a crowded and noisy space, voices come through clearly.
- Hearing aids can be calibrated for your environment. The acoustics of any given place will change depending on a lengthy list of factors. These adjustments can even be made automatically with some modern hearing aids. A dedicated device or smartphone can tune hearing aids that don’t do it automatically. By making small adjustments to the settings of your hearing aid, you’re capable of hearing better in a wider variety of settings, meaning there will be fewer places you wish to avoid.
Bottom line, these capabilities are vital elements of properly managing hearing loss. Usually, personal amplifiers don’t have these features.
Finding the best solution at an affordable price
Along with a diminished ability to hear, untreated hearing loss can also lead to cognitive decline. With amplifiers, you’re very likely to do more harm to your hearing because the device doesn’t differentiate frequencies and will most likely turn everything up to unsafe volumes. And that isn’t good for anyone.
Unless your hearing loss is being caused by earwax, hearing aids and some surgeries are the only approved treatments for hearing loss right now. You won’t save any money in the long run by neglecting to get treatment for your hearing loss. Neglected hearing loss has been shown to increase your overall healthcare costs over 40%. The good news is, there are budget friendly options. Just ask us.