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What Makes Someone Successful With Their Hearing Aids?

What Makes Someone Successful With Their Hearing Aids?

A hearing aid is a life changing device that can significantly improve the way someone interacts with the world and the people around them. It is important to strengthen a few key skills to make your investment in better hearing work for the long run.  What makes someone with hearing aids a successful user?  Here are a few of our top picks!

  1. Feeling confident in getting the hearing aid in (and out) of your ear: I often tell my patient’s that this skill is the most important skill to practice and learn.  Properly inserted hearing aids will provide the most appropriate sound levels into the ear, and will ensure the hearing aid stays snug in the ear. Practice makes perfect with this skill. Using a mirror can help ensure your hearing aid is in your ear properly.
  2. Proper Fitting and follow up care: Getting hearing aids is not a onetime event such as buying a kitchen appliance or choosing a new toilet paper. Regular hearing aid follow-up appointments are essential for a successful hearing aid user. These appointments can consist of hearing aid adjustments, maintenance, learning new skills, and hearing aid cleaning.  Being fit with hearing aids should be seen as a gradual and rewarding process, where the hearing aids are tweaked and adjusted over time, depending on how your brain adapts to the new sound it is hearing.
  3. Consistent Use: Wearing your hearing aid consistently is important for your brain to adjust to the new sounds you are hearing.  Consistency of use can continue to keep your ears “working”, which can in turn help prevent your hearing from deteriorating further.
  4. Communication Strategies: Hearing Aids can improve your ability to hear, but they will not restore your hearing to normal. It’s important to learn communication strategies that can help you better understand speech, such as learning effective listening strategies, practicing speech reading skills, and asking people to speak more clearly.

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Posted by hearingbeyond in Better Hearing Tips, Hearing Aid Tip, Hearing Aids, Top List, 0 comments
Helpful Hearing Tips for the Holidays

Helpful Hearing Tips for the Holidays

Hear well for the holidays!

This blog post discusses several tips and strategies for hearing well during the holidays.  The holiday season can be an excellent time for relaxing, spending time with family and friends, and great conversation.  Promoting a better hearing environment can allow you to have a more enjoyable holiday season.  Not hearing well during family and friend gatherings can cause anxiety, undue stress, and a reluctance to attend future gatherings and events.

Let’s discuss my top holiday hearing tips!

To start, seating arrangements play a vital role in better hearing. Circular seating arrangements allow guests to see one another better, increasing their ease of communication. Reading facial expressions and mouth movements can provide up to a 30% increase in understanding; why not take advantage of that boost!  If it's available, use a circular seating arrangement.

If you wear hearing aids, make sure to have them cleaned and tuned-up by your audiologist before the holiday season.  Always carry spare batteries with you, and make sure your hearing aids are charged! Having spare hearing aid filters and domes readily available is also an excellent idea.  Hearing aids only work well when they maintained and taken care of.

Are you planning on entertaining guests with board games? Play board games and party games that encourage turn taking. A poor communication setting is made when everyone is yelling answers and directions for a game all at the same time. Turn taking games are much more listening friendly.  Also, games that rely on whispering and music are not good choices for individuals that have a hearing loss, even a mild loss. Put the musical chairs away, and take out Apples-to-Apples!

Some parties (especially for young children) can have festive masks, face-painting, and other fund stations. Try a face-painting station for your holiday party instead of using festive masks. Masks can make voices sound muffled and distorted, and also hide very useful facial expressions and lip moments. Further, masks can bother children who use hearing aids, causing unnecessary discomfort. Face paint, temporary tattoo stickers, or face stickers are a better solution to communication, and the festive spirit can still be embraced!

Also, appropriate festive head wear can be important for better hearing. Imagine wearing a woolen Santa hat all day: Your head would be hot and sweaty!  Cloth hats are not optimal party headwear for people with hearing aids. Sweat can affect the hearing aid, and the sound quality can be diminished. Also, some cloth hats can knock off hearing devices from an ear when taken off. Paper hats (crowns) and festive headbands are a much better alternative.

If you feel like your hearing isn’t as great as it used to be, get your hearing tested.  Give yourself the gift of better hearing this holiday season!

Contact us for a hearing assessment today!

Posted by hearingbeyond in Better Hearing Tips, Hearing Aid Tip, Hearing Aids, Top List, 0 comments
The Best Hearing Aids of 2021

The Best Hearing Aids of 2021

Approximately 48 million Americans suffer from some kind of hearing loss.  A significant amount of research has shown a correlation between untreated hearing loss and other serious health problems, including depression, cognitive decline, memory issues, and even dementia.  As an informed consumer, it's your right to know what options are available to you to treat your hearing loss!  This article discusses the best hearing aids available on the exciting 2021 market.

The world of hearing aids is a constantly changing landscape.  Hearing aid companies are continuing to develop new and exciting features for their devices, constantly pushing the boundaries of what is possible.  The biggest 2021 hearing aid trends are Artificial Intelligence, Smart Hearing, and Brain Hearing.   To understand what hearing aids are the best, let's learn the basics.  At the most basic level, hearing aids are like tiny computers, and are made up of many small parts and components.  All hearing aids use the same basic parts in order to help you hear.  First, a hearing aid will pick up sounds with a microphone.  Then, a computer chip will convert this sound into digital code and adjust it according to your hearing loss.  Finally, the digital code is converted back into a sound wave and played into your ears through a speaker.

Now onto the best Hearing aids in 2021.

Phonak Paradise

Phonak's newest line of hearing aids, the Paradise, features a brand new chipset powering some awesome new features. Bluetooth connectivity allows for 2 devices to be paired at the same time, making switching between your favorite streaming device easier than ever.  The Paradise 70 and Paradise 90 aids features "Tap Control" which allows you to tap your ear to answer calls, adjust your audio stream, or activate Alexa, Siri, or Google Assistant.  Paradise comes loaded with motion sensors, and adjust their amplification based off of your movement.  The new Paradise chipset features better noise cancellation and clearer speech in noise as well.

Oticon More

The new Oticon More takes hearing technology and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to the next level.  When Oticon developed the More line of hearing aids, they preprogrammed the chipset to be familiar with over 12 million sound samples, in order to maximize it's sound quality in various different environments.  The new Polaris chipset uses a Deep Neural Network (DNN) to provide users with a crisp, clear sound signal, even in noisy areas.  Oticon More comes in a rechargeable battery form factor, and is bluetooth ready with Apple and Android devices.

Bernafon Alpha

Bernafon's newest line of hearing aids, Alpha, features a brand new chipset, featuring the industry's first "Hybrid Processing".   On a level of it's own, Bernafon Alpha hearing aids are capable of providing excellent speech intelligibility while maintaining comfort and sound quality.  Bernafon Alpha hearing aids come in a rechargeable form factor and are Bluetooth ready for Apple and Android devices.  Alpha hearing aids also come with a telecoil, which is extremely useful for hearing in "looped" environments like movie theaters, churches, government offices, live theatre environments, lecture halls, and classrooms.

Starkey Livio AI Edge

A trail-blazer in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and hearing technology, Starkey's new Livio AI Edge utilizes various features to improve speech understanding, especially in noisy places.  Featuring the new "Edge Mode", Starkey Livio AI Edge hearing aids can provide upwards of 4dB better noise reduction by simply tapping on the hearing aids.  Currently, the Livio AI Edge are the only hearing aids that come in a rechargeable custom form factor. Starkey Livio AI Edge comes in a rechargeable battery form factor, and is Bluetooth ready with Apple and Android devices.

Posted by hearingbeyond in Buyer's Guide, Hearing Aids, Top List, 0 comments