How can you get rid of used hearing aids? Whether they belonged to a deceased family member or you decided to upgrade your hearing aids to something fancier like a cochlear implant, the answer is the same: donate your used hearing aids instead of throwing them away.
There are plenty of people suffering from hearing loss who could use a donated hearing aid, and several organizations out there that collect and distribute those hearing aids to the people in need. Read on to discover why it’s important to donate your used hearing aid and find out how you can go about it.
Why it’s important to donate a used hearing aid
First, here are some important statistics about hearing loss and hearing aids:
- 15% of school-age children suffer from some form of hearing loss
- Nearly 29 million adults with hearing loss can benefit from hearing aids, but…
- …only 16% (4.6 million) of them actually use hearing aids
- The average age for first-time hearing aid users is 70, but again…
- Fewer than 30% of those over 70 who need hearing aids have ever used them
This is very worrisome. Because untreated hearing loss has been associated with multiple health issues from an increased risk in falls to cognitive decline and depression.
And the final compelling fact is that hearing loss can cost the average family $12,000 in income each year. But hearing aids can actually mitigate that cost by up to 50%.
For a family that loses out on $12,000 each year, it may just not be possible for them to afford a hearing aid.
Your old hearing aid can make a huge impact, in the health, quality of life and financial well-being, for a person in need who could not otherwise afford a hearing aid. It could also help a child in school who has difficulty hearing, which could affect their ability to get into higher education and make a livable wage when they’re older.
How to donate your used hearing aid
There are several options available for you to donate your used hearing aid to someone in need. One of the biggest organizations is the Lions Club International, which provides “affordable hearing aids for hard-of-hearing individuals who have limited financial resources,” according to its Hearing Aid Recycling program.
The Lions Club partners with hearing specialists who clean and refurbish the hearing aids, which are then either fit to the needs of a patient, used in healthcare missions in developing countries or sent to manufacturers for a credit that is then used to help a person in need buy a new set of hearing aids.
You can bring your wrapped hearing aids to a Lions Club collection container, which can usually be found in locations like a library or senior center, where they’ll be picked up by the local Lions Club.
Starkey Hearing Foundation also collects used hearing aids to donate to those in need. If you’d like to donate your old hearing aids to Starkey, you simply pack your hearing aids in a secure package and mail it to:
Your donation may qualify for a tax write-off, so you should be sure to include your contact information and mailing address on a donation card in order to receive a donation receipt.
Thinking about upgrading your old hearing aid to a newer and better model? Contact a hearing specialist in your area to set up a consultation and find out what options are available to you.