Picture of green piggy bank representing affordable hearing aids and a good deal.

We all enjoy a good bargain. But when it has to do with your health, be careful what you buy and pay attention to the small details.

The terms “hearing aid” and “hearing amplifier” might seem similar but they are actually completely different devices. And making the wrong selection could have important ramifications for your hearing and your overall health.

Hearing amplifiers

A small device that goes inside of your ear, a hearing amplifier increases the volume of outside sound. These are usually 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 recommended for people who have moderate to significant hearing loss.

Hearing amplifier aren’t hearing aids

Once people learn that hearing amplifiers aren’t recommended for individuals with even moderate hearing loss, the differences between the two devices start to become pretty plain. Of course, hearing aids are recommended for individuals who cope with hearing loss.

Both types of devices can raise the volume of external sound. The main difference between the two devices is how cutting edge that amplification is.

  • With hearing aids, only particular wavelengths of sound are boosted. That’s because people tend to lose their hearing one frequency at a time. Either high-frequency sounds or low-frequency sounds commonly fade first. Rather than making everything louder, hearing aids work to plug holes in what you’re hearing. For people who have hearing loss, this selective approach is more effective.
  • Hearing aids are specifically designed to help you process speech. To some extent, that’s as a consequence of the irregular way hearing loss progresses, but it’s also because communication is such a fundamental function of your hearing. So this function has been prioritized by hearing aid makers who have put substantial resources into improving it. In order to make certain voices can be heard clearly even in a crowded room, state-of-the-art technology and algorithms are packed inside of modern hearing aids.
  • Whatever environment you find yourself, your hearing aids can tune in to it. The acoustics of any given space will change depending on a lengthy list of variables. These adjustments can even be made automatically with some modern hearing aids. Others can be adjusted with a smartphone or a dedicated device. By making small adjustments to the settings of your hearing aid, you’re able to hear better in a wider variety of environments, meaning there will be fewer locations you want to avoid.

Simply put, these capabilities are vital elements of properly treating hearing loss. And these are attributes that are not present in the majority of personal hearing amplifiers.

Finding the best solution at an affordable price

Along with a decreased ability to hear, neglected hearing loss can also lead to mental decline. Because amplifiers don’t differentiate between frequencies, if you raise the volume enough to hear what you’re missing, you’ll probably have it up too loud for other wavelengths….and damage your hearing further. And who needs to do that?

Right now, the only approved treatments for hearing loss, if it isn’t caused by earwax, are some surgeries and hearing aids. You won’t save any money long term by failing to get treatment for your hearing loss. General healthcare costs have been found to increase by over 40% with neglected hearing loss. Fortunately, there are affordable solutions. We can help.

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.