Hearing Aid Myths
As an audiologist I work with patients and their hearing aids on a daily basis and have the pleasure of seeing how lives can be transformed for the better with the use of hearing aids. Not everyone who comes through our office is excited or thrilled to be fitted with hearing aid, though. Truth be told, no one really “wants” to wear hearing aids. How great would it be if no one had to deal with a debilitating hearing loss? What amazes me is how many misconceptions and “bad experience” stories patients talk about during their consultations. Let’s take a look at some common hearing aid myths and why they are not true.
Big Hearing Aids and “Old” People
If I get hearing aids everyone is going to see them and think I am old. While some people may still believe hearing aids are for “old” people, I have never really understood this unfair stereotype. This idea becomes very silly if we put it in perspective. What if we apply this to same stereotype to other common disabilities: “I choose not to see, because glasses are for old people,” “I choose not to be active because canes/walkers are for old people,” “I choose not to hear because hearing aids are for old people.” Why do we let the possibility of a negative thought or comment limit our quality of life? We are also able to make hearing aids much smaller and more discreet these days. I have yet to work with patients who return their hearing aids and comment that they really enjoyed hearing, but it’s just not worth the way they look.
I Have to Change the Battery!
Batteries are expensive, you have to change batteries so often and “that one place offers free batteries.” This is one of my favorite myths to talk about with patients. With modern hearing aids, most patients will get at least a week’s worth of life out of a battery. Have you ever refused to drive your car because you have to put gas in it once a week? Changing your hearing aid battery once a week will cost a patient approximately $3 to $5 a month. Don’t want to mess with batteries at all? Over the past year nearly every hearing aid manufacturer has come out with a rechargeable hearing aid option!
“In the Drawer” hearing aids
Everyone knows someone who got hearing aids and then they end up in the drawer, right? I always counsel patients that hearing aid success is very dependent their motivation. As an audiologist, I can only fix or work on issues that I am aware of. Most patients who end up with ITD “In The Drawer” hearing aids either did not follow up with their provider as needed or were not consistent with the use. I always like to counsel patients that hearing aids do not restore normal hearing but rather work to improve communication and stimulation as best as possible. There will always be limitations when dealing with a damaged auditory system. Being fit with hearing aids is on ongoing process and a continuous working relationship with your audiologist. This is why patients often do not do well with over the counter (OTC) or internet hearing aid purchases.
If you or a loved one have noticed increased difficulties in communication and are ready talk about options for improving your hearing, Call ENT Audiology Center at (325) 437-3617 to set up your comprehensive hearing evaluation. ENT Audiology Center, “Helping You Hear Better So You Can Live Life Better.”