Your hearing aids work great…but could they work better? When you’re watching TV or having a quiet conversation, your hearing aids work so seamlessly, and you almost forget you’re wearing them. But in noisy rooms, things can get a little fuzzy. And while it’s a bit frustrating, you figure that’s just the limit of the technology, right? Or at least that’s what you think until you hear about “smart” hearing aids, which can adjust settings based on the room you’re in. Wish you’d known that before you bought your hearing aid? Here are a few other things you probably should know.
1. Your hearing aid may have a trial period
Try it before you buy it! That’s a good motto for almost anything, so it’s always a good idea to ask about trial periods when you’re selecting your hearing aid. Sometimes there may be costs associated with trial periods, but often those costs can be directed towards the purchase of the hearing aid once you find one you like.
If you try before you buy, you’ll probably be a little more confident in your purchase and content with your results.
2. Hearing aid warranties vary
Every hearing aid is going to have a unique warranty issued by the manufacturer. Warranties usually cover only specific defects (those attributed to manufacturing), so not just any damage will be covered. It’s important to know what will be covered and what won’t. Once you know how good your warranty is, you can better decide what kind of protection plan you may need.
3. It might take some time to become used to your hearing aids
Hearing aids are wonderful devices, but it still may take some time for you to adjust to the way they work. This is especially true if your hearing loss comes on suddenly or if you’re relatively late in seeking treatment. There are some things you can do to ease this transition (practicing by reading aloud or listening to books on tape while you read a novel). But there will likely be a transition period. That’s okay! Your ears (and brain) will adjust.
4. There’s more than one style of hearing aid
Hearing aids come in multiple styles and types. Over the ear, in the ear canal, outside the ear canal–the theory is that no matter what your needs, there’s a style for you. You don’t have to feel as though you’re locked into one specific type of hearing aid–it’s okay to test out different types (remember the trial period?).
5. Your hearing aid can go wireless
That’s right. Modern hearing aids can go wireless! And what we mean by that is that the latest hearing aids can interact with a wide variety of your wireless devices, connecting directly to your mobile device when you answer phone calls or to your television as you watch your favorite shows.
Bluetooth connectivity can help cut down on irritating interference that can crop up when you hold your phone (or other electronic devices) up to your ear. That makes this feature less of a “bells and whistles” add-on and more of an important innovation.
6. Check for rechargeable hearing aid batteries
Some hearing aids have rechargeable batteries. Others don’t. That might seem like a trivial point when you’re first selecting your hearing aid–or at the very least, a factor not worth considering too intently.
But the overall performance of your batteries can play a big role in how well your hearing aid works generally. It’s worth doing a quick cost-benefit analysis: sometimes rechargeable hearing aids can be more expensive. But they can also be more reliable–and the cost of replacing batteries in non-rechargeable units can quickly add up.
Get to know your hearing aid
A hearing aid is going to be with you for a number of years, like a good companion or an old friend. So it’s a brilliant idea to spend some time getting to know your new buddy. Taking the time to look under the hood, so to speak, can help prepare you for the experience of wearing (and owning) a hearing aid.
You can’t know everything before you buy. But, hopefully, you do enough research to ensure there is nothing you wish you knew before you bought your hearing aid.