Hearing aids are compact devices that bring sound in to the ear and amplify it. There are many styles and features that help improve mild to severe hearing loss. Hearing aids can help you hear better in both quiet and noisy situations. They even connect with other devices to make telephone conversations, music and television shows easier to hear. While hearing aids won’t help everybody, they do prove useful to 90 percent of patients diagnosed with hearing loss.
Hearing aid technology has improved drastically over the past couple of decades. Early devices relied on vacuum tubes and bulky batteries, but today’s instruments take advantage of digital signal processing, microchips and computerization. Keeping track of the latest technological features can be challenging, but we’ll cover a few of the more popular options here.
Analog technology still exists, but fewer and fewer manufacturers offer these devices, and many have phased them out entirely. Analog units employ a particular frequency based on your audiogram and all sounds are amplified in the same manner, whether they are speech or background noise. Some analog hearing aids can be programmed for different listening environments.
Digital programmable hearing aids use digitized sound processing to convert sound waves into digital signals. A computer chip determines whether the signals are speech or noise and converts them into clear, amplified signals. The advantages of digital processing are significant: it offers improved programming ability, a more precise fit and a number of features designed to improve or enhance functionality.
If you or someone you care for is interested in hearing aids, please contact us at (858) 279-3277 to schedule an appointment.