Gilberts Audiology & Hearing Aid Center - Oklahoma

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

Who doesn’t love getting a good bargain? But you should be careful and watch out for little details in regards to your health.

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

Hearing amplifiers

A little device that goes in your ear, a hearing amplifier raises the volume of external sound. Technically classified as personal sound amplification products by the government, these gadgets tend to be fairly simple and one-dimensional. The volume of the world is basically cranked up.

These devices are generally not recommended for individuals with moderate to severe hearing loss because of their one-size-fits-all strategy.

Hearing amplifier aren’t hearing aids

Once people learn that hearing amplifiers are not suggested for people with even moderate hearing loss, the differences between the two devices begin to become rather stark. Hearing aids, obviously, are encouraged for individuals with hearing loss.

Both hearing aids and hearing amplifiers have the ability to increase volumes. The primary difference between the two devices is how sophisticated that amplification is.

  • Hearing aids can be calibrated for your environment. There are a number of factors that will determine the specific acoustics of a space. Some hearing aids can fine tune to these changes automatically. A dedicated device or smartphone can calibrate hearing aids that don’t do it automatically. By making minute adjustments to the settings of your hearing aid, you’re capable of hearing better in a wider variety of environments, meaning there will be fewer locations you want to avoid.
  • Selecting and amplifying speech is one of the main functions of a hearing aid. In part, that’s as a consequence of the uneven way hearing loss progresses, but it’s also because communication is such an essential function of your hearing. So this function has been prioritized by hearing aid makers who have put substantial resources into enhancing it. In order to make sure voices come through clearly even in a crowded room, sophisticated technology and algorithms are packed inside of modern hearing aids.
  • With hearing aids, only select wavelengths of sound are boosted. Because hearing loss normally advances frequency by frequency. Either high-frequency sounds or low-frequency sounds typically disappear first. Hearing aids work to fill in the holes in your hearing rather than just making everything louder. For individuals who have hearing loss, this selective approach is more effective.

To put it bluntly, properly managing hearing loss depends on these features. In most cases, personal amplifiers don’t have these abilities.

The right deal for your ears

Neglected hearing loss can cause 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 frequencies….and do additional damage. And that’s not good for anybody.

Unless your hearing loss is from earwax, hearing aids and some surgeries are the only authorized treatment options for hearing loss right now. You won’t save any money long term by failing to get treatment for your hearing loss. General healthcare costs have been shown to increase by over 40% with neglected hearing loss. The good news is, there are affordable 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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