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

We all enjoy a good bargain. But you need to be careful and look out for small details when it comes to your health.

The terms “hearing aid” and “hearing amplifier” may seem similar but they are actually very different devices. And making the wrong choice could have significant ramifications for your hearing and your general health.

What is a hearing amplifier?

A hearing amplifier is a small device that, when placed in your ear, increases the volume of the sounds around you. Technically categorized as personal sound amplification products by the government, these gadgets tend to be very simple and one-dimensional. A hearing amplifier is like turning the volume up on the world.

These devices are generally not suggested for individuals with moderate to significant hearing loss because of their one-size-fits-all approach.

Clear difference between hearing aids and personal amplifiers

It starts to become fairly apparent that hearing aids aren’t the same as hearing amplification devices when you recognize that amplifiers are not recommended for people with even moderate hearing loss. Hearing aids, obviously, are recommended for individuals who suffer from hearing loss.

Both types of devices can raise the volume of external sound. But one of these devices has a much higher level of amplification technology and sophistication.

  • With hearing aids, only specific wavelengths of sound are boosted. Because hearing loss often progresses frequency by frequency. Either high-frequency sounds or low-frequency sounds typically disappear first. 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.
  • Whatever environment you find yourself, your hearing aids can calibrate to it. The acoustics of any given space will change depending on a long list of factors. These adjustments can even happen automatically with some modern hearing aids. Others can be tuned using 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 settings, meaning there will be fewer places you want to avoid.
  • Selecting and amplifying speech is one of the main features of a hearing aid. Because communication is so central in our lives and also because of the uneven way hearing loss develops, this is an essential function. Because of this, hearing aid manufacturers have invested enormous resources into enhancing the clarity of speech above all else. In order to make sure voices can be heard clearly even in a crowded room, state-of-the-art technology and algorithms are bundled inside of modern hearing aids.

To put it bluntly, correctly treating hearing loss depends on these features. And these are qualities that are not present in the majority of personal hearing amplifiers.

Finding the best option at an affordable price

Neglected hearing loss can lead to cognitive decline, along with increasingly diminished ability to hear. Because amplifiers don’t differentiate between frequencies, if you turn them up enough to hear what you’re missing, you’ll probably have it up too loud for other wavelengths….and do additional damage. And who needs to do that?

Unless your hearing loss is from earwax, hearing aids and certain surgeries are the only authorized treatment options for hearing loss at this time. Ignoring hearing loss and avoiding treatment doesn’t save you money long term. Untreated hearing loss has been demonstrated to increase your overall healthcare costs more than 40 percent. The good news is, there are budget friendly options. 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.

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