If you’ve noticed changes in your hearing, but have put off getting a hearing test, you are not alone. Hearing impairment is one of the most prevalent chronic health conditions worldwide, yet it takes an average of seven years for people experiencing hearing loss to seek treatment.
Why do people wait so long? Seeking help for your hearing can help you reclaim the conversations, music, and sounds you used to hear. Treatment also helps minimize the negative effects of hearing loss – problems like depression, social isolation and even the development of dementia have been linked to untreated hearing loss.
On top of it all, the earlier hearing loss is detected, the easier it is to adapt to assisted hearing. With so much to gain from seeking treatment, hearing loss and hearing aids still carry an undeserved stigma that stands in the way of better hearing.
There’s good news though: that stigma is breaking down. Now more than ever, modern adults are learning to understand and appreciate their bodies as they age. Respecting our own aging processes and recognizing the benefits of treatment helps us confront hearing loss when we notice it.
Also, the general image of hearing aids as clunky, difficult devices is quite simply outdated. Over the past fifty years, huge advances have been made in the form and function of hearing aids, going from awkward (and highly noticeable) full ear shells to tiny, discrete micro computers that can boast not just improved hearing but user-friendly features like digital integration and rechargeable batteries.
Part of the lingering hearing aid stigma may be that as hearing technology became more sophisticated, it made changes that no one could see. While functionality improved exponentially, hearing aid components shrunk dramatically, allowing the physical devices to become nearly invisible.
Popular hearing aid styles today hide the device completely in the ear canal, or rely on a tiny receiver in the ear and a small processor behind the ear. Sleek and stylish, hearing aids today have become miniature marvels of engineering and design.
Ever since the first digital hearing aids were introduced in the mid-1980s, digital sound technology has been transforming the industry. Digital sound revolutionized how hearing aids work, being able to offer a more nuanced sound palette for users. In the past few years, digital sound has able to integrate with smart devices to offer users streaming sound and location-based environmental adjustment.
Starkey’s acclaimed Halo 2 hearing device is specifically designed for use with the Apple iPhone. Halo2 just won a prestigious 2017 SXSW Interactive Innovation Award for life-changing wearable tech. Halo2 connects to your smart phone via Starkey’s TruLink app for sound and media streaming to your device. Halo2 offers smart phone integrated tinnitus solutions and a range of customizable options.
ReSound’s Linx2 was the first hearing aid built specially for use with Apple devices. Linx2 can stream calls, video and other audio media from your iPhone, iPod and iPad directly to your hearing aid. The accompanying ReSound Smart App lets users quickly and easily adjust their hearing aid settings and can store location-based adjustments to automatically adapt your hearing aid when you revisit your favorite spots. Additionally, Linx2 is designed for long battery life so it’s responsiveness doesn’t drain the battery of your hearing aid or your smart device.
With the movement towards green efficiency and renewable energy, hearing aids companies are bringing more rechargeable options to the public. With the advancement of silver-zinc and lithium-ion battery technology, modern rechargeables are smaller, charge up faster, and can run hearing aids longer than ever before.
Phonak’s Audéo B features built-in lithium ion batteries that can run for 24 hours off of 3 hours of charging time. They’ve also made the charging process easier with a simple snap-in case. Similarly, Signia Cellion primax is powered by lithium-ion batteries which provide a reliable quick charge and long-lasting battery life.
Hearing aids today are both inconspicuous and incorporate easily into active lifestyles.
Unitron’s Moxi Now is the smallest ever receiver-in-canal hearing device, pushing the size of hearing aids smaller and lighter with improved micro components. Compared to the size of “two blueberries,” Moxi hides completely behind the ear. As an added plus, Moxi models have rechargeable options.
For those who like bold statements, Oticon offers many of its hearing aid models and cutting edge BrainHearing technology in striking, vivid colors. With streamlined design and stylish curves, color options like violet, mother-of-pearl or orange can make your hearing aid part of a style statement.
Your hearing is an integral part of how you understand the world, so why not make sure it’s at its best? Hearing aids today incorporate technology and design to suit any lifestyle. If you’d like to learn more about your options, contact us at Arizona Balance and Hearing Aids, we’re happy to help you discover the right custom solutions for your hearing needs!