Finding a bargain just feels good, right? Getting a great deal can be invigorating, and more gratifying the bigger the deal. So letting your coupon make your shopping decisions for you, always chasing after the least expensive items, is all too easy. When it comes to buying a pair of hearing aids, chasing a bargain can be a big mistake.
If you need hearing aids to treat hearing loss, choosing the “cheapest” option can have health repercussions. After all, the whole point of using hearing aids is to be able to hear well and to prevent health problems associated with hearing loss like mental decline, depression, and an increased chance of falls. The trick is to choose the hearing aid that best suits your lifestyle, your hearing requirements, and your budget.
Choosing affordable hearing aids – some tips
Affordable is not the same thing as cheap. Keep an eye on affordability and functionality. That will help you get the best hearing aid possible for your individual budget. These are helpful tips.
Tip #1: Research before you buy: Affordable hearing aids exist
Hearing aid’s reputation for being extremely expensive is not always reflected in the reality of the situation. The majority of manufacturers produce hearing aids in a wide range of price points and work with financing companies to make their devices more budget friendly. If you’ve already decided that the most reliable hearing aids are too expensive, you’re probably more likely to search the bargain bin than seek out affordable and reliable options, and that can have a long-term, harmful affect on your hearing and overall health.
Tip #2: Find out what your insurance will cover
Insurance might cover some or all of the costs associated with getting a hearing aid. In fact, some states mandate that insurance cover them for both children and adults. Asking never hurts. If you’re a veteran, you might be eligible for hearing aids through government programs.
Tip #3: Your hearing loss is unique – find hearing aids that can tune to your hearing situation
Hearing aids are, in some ways, similar to prescription glasses. The frame is pretty universal (depending on your sense of style, of course), but the prescription is adjusted for your specific needs. Similarly, hearing aids might look alike cosmetically, but each hearing aid is tuned to the individual user’s hearing loss needs.
You’re not going to get the same benefits by grabbing some cheap hearing device from the clearance shelf (or, in many cases, results that are even slightly helpful). These amplification devices increase all frequencies rather than boosting only the frequencies you’re having trouble with. What’s the importance of this? Normally, hearing loss will only impact some frequencies while you can hear others perfectly fine. If you raise the volume enough to hear the frequencies that are too quiet, you’ll make it uncomfortable in the frequencies you can hear without a device. You will probably end up not using this cheap amplification device because it doesn’t solve your real issue.
Tip #4: Not all hearing aids have the same features
There’s a tendency to view all of the great technology in modern hearing aids and think that it’s all extra, simply bells and whistles. The problem with this idea is that if you wish to hear sounds properly (sounds such as, you know, bells and whistles), you most likely need some of that technology. The specialized technology in hearing aids can be tuned in to the user’s level of hearing loss. Many modern designs have artificial intelligence that helps block out background noise or connect with each other to help you hear better. In addition, taking into account where (and why) you’ll be using your aids will help you select a model that fits your lifestyle.
It’s crucial, in order to compensate for your hearing loss in an efficient way, that you have some of this technology. Hearing aids are a lot more sophisticated than a basic, tiny speaker that boosts the volume of everything. Which brings up our last tip.
Tip #5: A hearing amplification device isn’t a hearing aid
Alright, say this with me: a hearing amplification device is not a hearing aid. If you take nothing else away from this article, we hope it’s that. Because hearing amplification devices try really hard to make you think they work the same way as a hearing aid for a fraction of the price. But that’s dishonest marketing.
Let’s take a closer look. An amplifier:
- Provides the user with little more than basic volume controls (if that).
- Is often cheaply built.
- Takes all sounds and makes them louder.
Conversely, a hearing aid:
- Is adjusted specifically to your hearing loss symptoms by a highly qualified hearing specialist.
- Can identify and boost specific sound types (such as the human voice).
- Will help protect your hearing health.
- Is calibrated to amplify only the frequencies you have trouble hearing.
- Can minimize background noise.
- Can achieve maximum comfort by being molded to your ear.
- Has batteries that are long lasting.
- Can be programmed with various settings for different locations.
Your hearing deserves better than cheap
Everybody has a budget, and that budget is going to limit your hearing aid choices no matter what price range you’re looking in.
This is why an affordable solution tends to be the focus. The long-term benefits of hearing aids and hearing loss management are well documented. This is why an affordable solution is what your focus should be. Don’t forget, cheap is less than your hearing deserves.”