Hearing Aids Have Changed Dramatically in the Last Few Years
If you haven’t thought about hearing aids since your great grandfather wore one to your violin recital, you might be shocked at how much they’ve changed. In fact, hearing aids have changed so much in the last few years many of our patients tend not to think of them as just hearing aids. Not only are hearing aids far more discreet, but they use sophisticated artificial intelligence (AI) and Bluetooth which add a whole other level of sound quality, clarity and, frankly, usefulness. There was a time that you couldn’t use hearing aids with telephones. Now digital hearing aids will synch right to your smartphone.
Here are just a few of the amazing advances in hearing-aid technology:
- Bluetooth features that sync with your TV, phone and other smart devices.
- Artificial intelligence, so you can filter out noise to focus on the music or voice you want to hear.
- Translation capabilities—yes, this is new technology, but pretty amazing, especially if you enjoy traveling.
- More comfortable, extended-wear options.
New digital hearing aids have also solved many of the complaints of earlier hearing aid devices such as eliminating the “voice-in-a-tunnel” effect and cancelling out feedback (that annoying screeching noise).
What’s the difference between digital hearing aids and analog?
Back in the day, there were only analog hearing aids, which are essentially amplifying devices. Similar to digital hearing aids, they have a tiny microphone, a receiver and a component designed to make sounds louder. But that’s where the comparison ends, because digital hearing aids also have a microchip, which makes them akin to tiny computers. Many of the amazing benefits listed above are only possible with digital hearing aids including:
- Automatically focus on voices (instead of noise)
- Cancel out that screeching feedback sound older models sometimes made
- Connect to other devices
- Discern between situations where you’d want to focus on one sound (like talking to a waiter in a restaurant) versus situations where you’d want to hear a variety of sounds (like at a rock concert)
What this means is that digital hearing aids offer a sound quality much closer to your natural hearing. Is it any wonder why most people prefer digital hearing aids?