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

Who doesn’t love getting a good bargain? But you need to be careful and be aware of small details in regards to your health.

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

Hearing amplifiers

A hearing amplifier is a small device that, when put in your ear, raises the volume of the sounds around you. These are generally really simple, one-dimensional devices which the government classifies as personal sound amplification devices. A hearing amplifier is like turning the volume up on the world.

These devices are typically not recommended for people with moderate to significant hearing loss because of their one-size-fits-all approach.

Distinct difference between hearing aids and personal amplifiers

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

Both kinds of devices are capable of raising the volume of external sound. The biggest difference between the two devices is how sophisticated that amplification is.

  • Hearing aids are specially manufactured to help you understand speech. In part, that’s due to the uneven way hearing loss progresses, but it’s also because communication is such an essential function of your hearing. Because of this, hearing aid manufacturers have invested enormous resources into improving the clarity of speech above everything else. In order to make certain voices come through clearly even in a noisy room, advanced technology and algorithms are bundled inside of modern hearing aids.
  • With hearing aids, only specific wavelengths of sound are amplified. Because hearing loss normally advances frequency by frequency. Wavelengths at the higher and lower end of the spectrum are generally the first to go. Hearing aids work to fill in the gaps in your hearing rather than just making everything louder. For people 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 place will change depending on a long list of factors. These adjustments can even happen automatically with some modern hearing aids. Others can be adjusted with a smartphone or a dedicated device. You will avoid fewer places because you will be able to hear better in a wider variety of settings as your hearing aids make minute adjustments.

Simply put, these capabilities are crucial elements of properly managing hearing loss. And these are features that are not present in most personal hearing amplifiers.

Finding the best option at an affordable price

Untreated hearing loss can bring about cognitive decline, not to mention increasingly diminished ability to hear. Because amplifiers don’t distinguish 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 damage your hearing further. And who needs to do that?

Unless your hearing loss is being caused by earwax, hearing aids and some surgeries are the only authorized treatments for hearing loss at this time. Dismissing hearing loss and bypassing treatment doesn’t save you money ultimately. Neglected hearing loss has been demonstrated to increase your general healthcare costs over 40%. Luckily, there are affordable solutions. Just ask us.

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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.

Medical information dates as new research comes out all the time - if you have a concern about your hearing, please call us.

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