“I'm dedicated to providing optimal health care in a relaxed environment where I treat every patient as if they were my own family.” –DR. ANIKET GUPTA
So, let’s look at How to choose the Right Hearing Aid for you?
Feel free to skip ahead if one topic catches your eye:
Hearing loss is emerging as a serious health issue and it can affect anyone at any age. It's most common among people older than 60 and also found in newborn children. People facing hearing problems often feel excluded from communication and are susceptible to loneliness, depression and paranoia. Hearing loss also affects our physical and mental well-being.
An awareness of the seriousness of hearing loss is playing an important role in increasing the demand for hearing aids and its diagnostic services in India. Due to factors such as high noise pollution, rise in the patient pool; India is expected to experience the fastest growth rate for hearing aid devices in the coming years.
Symptoms vary from patient to patient, from mild to severe. A patient with a mild hearing impairment may have problems understanding speech, while patients with severe deafness rely on lip-reading or sign language for communication.
According to a survey, In India, 63 million people (6.3%) suffer from significant auditory loss.
With recent technological advancements, hearing aids have become more sophisticated and are rapidly improving to benefit wearers more than ever before. Today’s hearing aids come in various styles and incorporate digital technology in ways that not only improve the performance of the device but also offers the best sound experience to the user. If you are suffering from hearing disability, these new generation hearing aids can far improve your living and listening experience and can help you restore your confidence.
Hearing loss is caused by dysfunction of a part of the ear such as the inner ear, the cochlea, auditory nerve, brain damage, etc. The type and severity of hearing loss will influence what kind of treatment is needed, hearing aids, speech therapy, etc.
If you are suffering from any of the following symptoms you need to schedule a complete hearing evaluation:
Your audiologists (ear doctor) will run a few regular hearing loss tests. These tests may vary between clinics and depending on your particular hearing issues and concerns. After you’ve finished your hearing tests, the results will be mapped on an audiogram. Your doctor will consider all the factors and recommend the best hearing aids as per your needs.
It is important that you choose the right clinic and consult a professional's expert opinion so that you make the right decision and avoid common mistakes associated with hearing aids.
At Tarang Speech & Hearing Clinics in Karkardooma, Delhi, we specialize in the latest hearing aid technology & provide full diagnostic and rehabilitation services for all types of speech and hearing disorders.
A hearing aid is a small electronic device that you wear in or behind your ear. It has three basic parts: a microphone, amplifier, and speaker. The hearing aid receives sound through a microphone, which converts the sound waves to electrical signals and sends them to an amplifier. The amplifier increases the power of the signals and then sends them to the ear through a speaker.
The Phonak brand has been developing, producing, and distributing life-changing hearing solutions for more than 70 years. Phonak technology offers advanced hearing technology to create a solution that delivers excellent sound quality. They offer a wide range of products for every type of client and every hearing situation.
Tarang Speech and Hearing Clinics provide the best speech and hearing solutions under one roof. At Tarang we offer the following different brands as per your requirement:
Phonak: Phonak hearing aids and related products are designed to help wearers enjoy all aspects of their lives with improved clarity. All Phonak hearing aid styles and technology levels include a tinnitus feature. The company’s premium technology level hearing aids (V90 or B90) include all available features. Bonus capabilities include improved speech recognition in cars and integration with other audio devices.
Widex: Widex is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of hearing aids. Their hearing aids are sold in more than 100 countries around the world. Widex EVOKE hearing devices evolve in real life to keep getting smarter. It learns from your hearing preferences in the moment and over time. Together with major advances in sound technology, Widex EVOKE provides a more natural and personalized hearing experience than ever before. So, the great hearing device you buy today evolves to be even better tomorrow!
Bernafon: Bernafon offers many different types and styles of hearing aids with different user benefits. Many connect wirelessly to mobile phones and other devices. This results in many benefits: convenient hands-free use of your mobile phone, better speech understanding and sound perception with less disturbing background noise, or an individually set volume when watching TV with others. Bernafon products and technologies empower people to hear and communicate better – so you can overcome obstacles and pursue your passions.
Resound: ReSound has been a pioneer in building innovative hearing solutions & makes it easier & more comfortable than ever before to access personalized sound that suits your lifestyle. ReSound's the ecosystem of hearing aids, wireless accessories and apps help you to hear and adapt to different environments and situations with the best sound quality.
Oticon: Oticon offers life-changing, cutting-edge hearing aid technology for every type of hearing loss, age and lifestyle. Oticon hearing aids are for mild, moderate, severe, and profound hearing loss. New Oticon Xceed is the world’s most powerful hearing aid for people with severe hearing loss.
When all brands are compared Phonak products offer better speech understanding in noise, less listening effort and give clear, rich sound experience. Combined with modern technology it is a multifunctional hearing aid that conveys love at first sound.
Selecting and understanding what hearing aid is the right fit for you can be challenging. There are five main types of hearing aids that you can choose from:
4.1 Invisible In the Canal (IIC): These custom made hearing aids are so tiny, no one will notice you're wearing them i.e. they are completely invisible.
4.2 Completely in the Canal (CIC): These almost invisible, custom-made aids are to fit completely in the ear canal and only the tiny removal handle of the hearing aid shows outside of the ear canal.
Both IIC and CIC styles are typically fit for people with mild to moderate hearing loss. They offer good sound quality as they are fitted within the ear.
4.3 In-the-canal (ITC): ITC is slightly larger than IIC and CIC styles and they sit in the lower portion of the outer ear bowl, making them comfortable and easy to use. They offer more features than IIC and CIC styles such as manual control.
4.4 Receiver-in-canal (RIC): In this style, the speaker of the hearing aid rests in the ear canal, but the microphone and processor sit in a tiny case behind the ear. They are connected by a thin wire.
4.5 Behind the Ear (BTE): In this type, the battery compartment, microphone, and controls are placed behind the ear with a clear tube connecting to the earmold. The BTE is suitable for those with mild to intense hearing loss.
The Open Fit hearing aid is able to keep your ear canal open so that low-frequency sounds are best able to enter your ear naturally.
Choosing which style of hearing aid is most suitable for you depends on your type of hearing loss and lifestyle needs. Your hearing healthcare professional will recommend styles & brands that will benefit your hearing according to your comfort level.
If you work outdoors or travel frequently for work, you may be concerned about your hearing aid’s durability. Most hearing aids can last from 3 to 5 years and with regular maintenance they may last longer. For digital aid, you can upgrade it regularly based on the updates in the software.
There are a few factors affecting the durability of your hearing aids:
(A) Brand and quality of hearing aid: some or most parts of a hearing aid are susceptible to degradation over time. You must choose the best brand for the best quality and also ensure that it has a protective coating against dirt, humidity, etc.
(B) Cleaning and maintenance: Regular cleaning must be done to remove any debris, moisture and wax. The better you take care of your hearing aids, the longer they work. Store them in a cool, dry place. Charge your batteries regularly and when required change them periodically. Remember well-maintained devices last longer.
(C) Style, pattern and technological type of device: In most cases, behind-the-ear (BTE) type aids tend to last longer than in-the-ear (ITE) styles. This is because ITE style aids are placed inside the canal and are more exposed to wax, dampness, etc. In such cases, maintenance activity is very important. Also, you might need to upgrade or change your hearing aid if it is technological outdated i.e. no upgrade available or difficult to reprogram.
By discussing all these factors with your doctor, you can select the best hearing aid and keep them working well as long as possible.
Now let’s understand how to take proper care of your hearing aids. Maintenance requires the following four steps: cleaning, battery care, repair, and upgrade.
Cleaning: As discussed in the above section, regular cleaning is needed to keep your hearing aids safe from dirt and moisture damage.
Battery care: A standard hearing aid battery lasts anywhere from 3 to 22 days. Rechargeable hearing aid batteries do need replacement and time span ranges now from a year to several years. Standard replaceable or non-rechargeable hearing aid batteries can last anywhere from 5 to 14 days, based on a 16-hour day of wear. This is dependent upon the size of the battery and the power needed by the hearing aid.
A consistent battery routine is important for lasting performance. To get the most life out of your hearing aid batteries, you must conserve power by turning off your hearing aids when not in use and also rechargeable batteries are a good option for the long run.
Repair: If your hearing aid is not working properly or physically damaged; you should schedule an appointment with your hearing care professional.
Upgrade: With new technical innovations, hearing aid technology gets better every year. If your old hearing aids are no longer satisfying all your needs and preferences; and you want to improve their sound quality; then upgrading to a more advanced, higher-quality set is the perfect solution.