Roadblocks to Good Hearing
Most people, whether they have normal hearing or hearing loss, want to hear as well as possible.
But sometimes people put roadblocks between themselves and good hearing. These roadblocks have nothing to do with their hearing levels. Instead, these are self imposed obstacles some people create.
Hearing from only one ear
People use hearing aids because they have to, not because they want to. But some people with hearing loss in both ears compromise good hearing by using a hearing aid in only one ear.
Some people use only one hearing aid because it’s less expensive. Others feel that using two hearing aids means they’re “handicapped.” Ironically, these people end up having more of a hearing handicap because they don’t want to look handicapped.
If you choose to use only one hearing aid when you have a loss in both ears, you’ve put a roadblock between yourself and good hearing. You can’t expect one hearing aid to help both ears!
Cosmetics and good hearing
It’s only natural to want anything you use—your clothes, your glasses, your hearing aids—to look attractive. But choosing the cosmetic appearance of hearing aids as the primary concern may create another roadblock to good hearing.
Many different styles and sizes of hearing aids are available, including miniature canal and open-fit hearing aids that are virtually invisible. For many people, these hearing aids are not a compromise.
For others, however, certain styles or sizes of hearing aids are a compromise because ofthe nature oftheir hearing loss. That doesn’t mean that the smaller hearing aids won’t be helpful. Rather, one style of hearing aid may be more helpful than another.
For example, someone came to us with two hearing aids she had obtained elsewhere. She complained that she continued to have significant hearing difficulties.
After completing an audiologic evaluation, we understood why these hearing aids had not been successful—for her. We recommended a different style we believed would be significantly more effective. She wanted two new hearing aids, but only if they were the same size and style as her present, unsuccessful aids. We advised against repeating her previous and unsuccessful experience and she decided not to do anything.
By choosing cosmetics as the only factor in selecting hearing aids, this woman put a roadblock between herself and good hearing. She continued to struggle with her considerable hearing difficulties rather than use a more effective style of hearing aid.
Cost and good hearing
There is a wide range in the cost and capabilities ofhearing aids. For manypeople, less expensive hearing aids are not a significant compromise. Today, even moderately priced hearing aids have highly capable technology, such as feedback suppression, directional microphones and compression. For others, however, more expensive hearing aids, with higher levels of technology, allow them to understand speech more clearly and more uncomfortably. Is the improved hearing worth it? Only you can decide.
It’s your choice
One hearing aid or two, what style, what level of technology . . . there are many choices available to you. Our job is to review all the options and help you choose the best instruments for you and your hearing. We can avoid the roadblocks—and you can hear as well as possible.
Copyright 2009 Hearing HealthCare News