Hearing Aid Tips

posted By: Earlens Web | 08.23.18

Where Can I Learn What Earlens Costs?

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The price of Earlens is set by the Earlens provider. In general, Earlens are within the price range of premium hearing aids. The price typically includes follow up visits with your Earlens Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) physician and audiologist or hearing healthcare professional, as well as a 3-year warranty.

 

Earlens wearers also have access to a complimentary Earlens Concierge service. The Earlens Concierge is available to provide convenient remote support for questions about the Earlens and can be particularly helpful for new Earlens patients as they adapt to their new hearing devices.

While insurance does not always cover hearing aids, some insurance plans do include a hearing aid benefit. If you are not sure whether your insurance has a hearing aid benefit, an Earlens provider will be able to help review your policy to let you know what services might be covered. An Earlens provider will also be able to share details of any payment plans that their office offers.

Before considering the cost of Earlens, it is important to evaluate the benefit that Earlens can deliver. The first step is to visit an Earlens provider to determine whether you are a candidate for Earlens. An Earlens provider may also be able to provide a sound demonstration so that you can compare Earlens to your current hearing aids.

 

If you decide to try Earlens, you may be eligible for a trial period during which you can consider how much better you are hearing with Earlens. During this time, you will work closely with your Earlens audiologist, who can adjust your new hearing devices based on how well you are hearing in the listening environments that are important to you.

 

If you have other questions about Earlens, visit our Earlens FAQs page. To learn specific pricing for Earlens and whether Earlens could help you hear better, make an appointment with an Earlens provider near you.

 

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posted By: Earlens Web | 07.18.18

What Happens if I Have a Problem with my Earlens?

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If you wear Earlens and have a question about your hearing devices or notice a change in your hearing, you can reach out to the Earlens Concierge. The Earlens Concierge is a complimentary service available to all Earlens users. The Earlens Concierge offers:

 

  • Answers to questions about Earlens features and functions
  • Device care tips and tricks
  • Convenient, remote support

 

For example, the Earlens Concierge can help answer questions you have about charging your Earlens Hearing Solution, connecting your hearing aids to your iPhone, or adjusting the volume on your hearing devices. If you are an existing Earlens patient, you can call 1-(844)-999-LENS to speak to a dedicated member of our Concierge team.

 

If you think that your Earlens Hearing Solution may not be working, we recommend first ensuring that your Processors are properly charged and have been turned on. You can use the Earlens Charger to check the charge level of your hearing devices. Four flashing lights indicate that your devices are not charging correctly. Alternately, if you do not see any charging indicator lights, your Charger may not be plugged in. The Earlens Concierge can help you determine what the issue might be and will coordinate with your Earlens provider as needed. In the meantime, you can use your previous hearing aids as a back-up pair.

 

The Earlens Concierge is a great resource for Earlens patients and can help you adapt to your new Earlens hearing devices. If you are considering Earlens, make an appointment with an Earlens provider near you. Your provider will be happy to share further details about Earlens  and the special resources that will be available to you as an Earlens wearer.

 

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posted By: Earlens Web | 06.11.18

Hear Better Outdoors this Summer

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Do you miss hearing the sounds of the birds chirping or sand crunching beneath your feet during summer walks? It could be because you’re having trouble hearing in the upper frequencies.

 

Conventional hearing aids have difficulty providing meaningful amplification in the higher frequencies. This is because they rely on tiny speakers to amplify sound. Unfortunately, tiny speakers can only amplify a narrow bandwidth of sound without experiencing the drawbacks of feedback (whistling) or distortion. For a sense of the difference between conventional hearing aid bandwidth and perfect hearing, consider that perfect hearing ranges from 20 Hz in the low frequencies all the way up to 20,000 Hz in the high frequencies. In contrast, hearing aids can usually only amplify sound from ~750 Hz – 5500 Hz.

 

A new hearing technology, the Earlens Contact Hearing Solution, eliminates the need for a speaker. How does it work? In Earlens, a Processor that is worn like a behind-the-ear hearing aid captures sound, which is then converted into pulses of energy by an Ear Tip, which is worn in the ear canal. Those pulses of energy contain sound information, which vibrates a tiny custom Lens on the eardrum, activating the ear’s natural hearing system. This unique way of working allows Earlens to deliver a broader bandwidth than any hearing aid on the market.

 

Not only does Earlens provide meaningful amplification in the low frequencies all the way down to 100 Hz, but it excels at providing audibility in the high frequencies that conventional hearing aids have so much trouble with. Not only is this important because better hearing in the high frequencies has been correlated with the ability to understand speech more easily in challenging listening environments*, but also because better hearing in the high frequencies can help us enjoy the world around us better again. For instance, Earlens wearer Barbara W. explained, “I can hear the birds that I never heard before. It’s like experiencing more of the world, and it’s very pleasurable. And, it’s very empowering.”

 

Watch more Earlens reviews on our Earlens Testimonials page. To learn more about what Earlens could do for you, visit your local Earlens provider.

 

*Levy SC et al.  Extended High-Frequency Bandwidth Improves Speech Reception in the Presence of Spatially Separated Masking Speech.  Ear Hear. 2015 Sep-Oct;36(5):e214-24.

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posted By: Earlens Web | 06.03.18

Swimming with Earlens

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With summer approaching, you may be looking forward to water activities like swimming. And if you wear Earlens, you can continue to enjoy these activities while wearing your Lens.

 

That said, if you wear Earlens, you should remove your Processors before getting into a pool or shower, just as you would remove behind-the-ear hearing aids in the same situation. However, the Lens is designed to be worn continuously in the ear canal and can stay in place on the eardrum during activities like swimming or showering. The custom shape of the Lens makes it remarkably stable.

 

To help keep your Lens working and in the right position, be careful not to aim direct streams of water into your ear canal, since doing so could move the Lens out of place. If you swim daily or very regularly, you may also wish to speak to your Earlens provider about wearing custom earplugs.

 

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posted By: Earlens Web | 05.22.18

Hearing Loss and Relationships

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Last week, we talked about the link between hearing loss and heart health. But this week, we want to talk about hearing loss and a different kind of heart health – relationships!

 

Hearing is a critical aspect of our ability to communicate, and communication is an integral part of our ability to connect with the people around us. So, hearing loss can certainly have a negative impact on relationships that are important to us. In a 2009 British study by Specsavers Hearing Centres, 44% of 1,500 people with hearing loss who were surveyed reported that their hearing loss had caused relationships with their partner, friends or family to suffer.

 

Fortunately, hearing aids can improve day to day communication with friends and loved ones. For instance, in a study from the National Council on the Aging (NCOA), hearing aid users reported “significant improvements in many areas of their lives”, including their relationships at home and social life.

 

If you’ve tried hearing aids and are still having trouble getting the clarity or sound quality that you desire, you may wish to consider a new kind of hearing technology. The new Earlens Contact Hearing Solution uses energy to transmit sound and directly vibrate the eardrum. Earlens works very differently from conventional digital hearing aids, which rely on tiny speakers to amplify sound.

 

A broader frequency range has been associated with more natural sound quality and the ability to understand speech more easily.* But, since speakers are limited in the bandwidth that they can amplify without feedback or distortion, conventional hearing aids are limited in the sound quality that they can provide. By eliminating the need to use a speaker to transmit sound, Earlens can deliver a broader frequency range for more complete sound than any hearing aid on the market.

 

If you currently wear hearing aids but are still not fully satisfied with the sound quality or your ability to understand friends and loved ones, Earlens may be able to help. Learn more about the Earlens Contact Hearing Solution and ask for a sound demonstration to compare Earlens to your existing hearing aid by making an appointment with an Earlens provider near you.

 

*Moore, B. C., & Tan, C. (2003). Perceived naturalness of spectrally distorted speech and music. The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 114(1), 408. Levy SC et al.  Extended High-Frequency Bandwidth Improves Speech Reception in the Presence of Spatially Separated Masking Speech.  Ear Hear. 2015 Sep-Oct;36(5):e214-24.

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posted By: Earlens Web | 03.08.18

Why Do My Ears Feel Plugged When I Wear Hearing Aids?

Hearing Aids Plugged Ears

When you first start wearing hearing aids, your ears may feel “plugged”. This is known among hearing professionals as “occlusion”. The occlusion effect occurs when low frequency sounds like your own voice, are trapped in the ear canal by the hearing aid blocking the ear canal. This sound is transmitted to the cochlea and often causes a feeling of plugged ears, or the sensation that your voice is boomy, hollow, or like talking in a barrel.

 

“Open fit” hearing aids like receiver-in-canal hearing aids can help reduce the risk of occlusion and deliver sufficient amplification or “gain” for people with mild to moderate hearing losses. These types of hearing aids leave the ear canal open so that low-frequency sounds can enter the ear naturally, while other frequencies can be amplified through the hearing aid.

However, such hearing aids may not always be appropriate for people with hearing loss in the lower frequencies. While high-frequency hearing loss is more common, especially with age-related hearing loss, some low-frequency hearing loss can also occur along with high-frequency loss, or with conditions like Meniere’s Disease or infections. Open fit hearing aids may also present a challenge for people who are not able to get enough gain in the upper frequencies without feedback or whistling. In such cases, an audiologist may recommend a closed ear mold with a small vent, which prevents sounds from escaping out of the ear canal but can contribute to a “plugged” feeling.

The Earlens Contact Hearing Solution offers a wide vent in the ear mold, which can help reduce the risk of feeling plugged, while delivering high levels of gain across a broader frequency range than any other hearing aid on the market. Unlike hearing aids, Earlens transmits sound using pulses of energy, and activates the natural hearing system by directly vibrating a custom Lens that is placed non-surgically on the eardrum. See how Earlens works. For some users, this can offer more natural sound quality without the occlusion effect that typically comes with closed ear molds on hearing aids.

 

To find out whether Earlens could be a good fit for your hearing needs, make an appointment with your local Earlens provider.

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posted By: Earlens Web | 01.19.18

When Should I Upgrade My Hearing Aid?

When to upgrade hearing aid

Hearing aid technology advances rapidly, so new hearing devices that are now available may give you a significant improvement in your hearing. If your current hearing aids are 3 years old or more, we recommend speaking to an audiologist about what new hearing aid technology is available that could benefit you.

 

For instance, the Earlens Contact Hearing Solution offers more complete sound than any hearing aids have ever been able to provide. That’s because Earlens  eliminates the speaker technology that conventional hearing aids rely on. Instead, Earlens transmits sound by converting sound information into pulses of energy that activates the Lens to directly vibrate the eardrum. See how Earlens works.

 

As a result, Earlens can provide meaningful amplification across a fuller range of sound than other hearing aids can, and comes much closer to the frequency bandwidth associated with normal hearing. The result is more natural sound quality, with crisp highs and rich lows. Earlens is also designed to help improve hearing in noise by providing amplification in the higher frequencies that traditional hearing aids have trouble with, but which are important for speech understanding.*

 

Other signs that you may want to consider upgrading to new hearing technology include a change in your hearing or lifestyle. For example, if you are no longer hearing as well as you used to with your current hearing aids, you may benefit from a more powerful hearing device. Similarly, if you find yourself more active than you used to be, you may find that a rechargeable hearing aid that does not require battery changes is better suited for your new lifestyle.

 

To speak to a hearing professional about the latest hearing technology, or to learn more about the Earlens Contact Hearing Solution, make an appointment with your local Earlens provider.

 

*Levy SC et al.  Extended High-Frequency Bandwidth Improves Speech Reception in the Presence of Spatially Separated Masking Speech.  Ear Hear. 2015 Sep-Oct;36(5):e214-24

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posted By: Earlens Web | 10.31.17

Happy Halloween from Earlens!

Happy Halloween to our readers! Not only is it Halloween today, but it is the last day of National Audiology Month. Ghouls, goblins and witches may be scary, but here at Earlens, we find untreated hearing loss to be spooky too. So, we are wrapping up National Audiology Month with 4 reasons to treat hearing loss.

 

Your Relationships: The ability to hear and communicate is important to your connections with friends and loved ones. Not surprisingly, a study by the Hear-the-World foundation found 73% of those surveyed believed their relationship with their family had improved since they started wearing a hearing aid. Moreover, 78% claimed that their hearing aids have had a positive effect on their relationship with friends and made communal activities more enjoyable again.

 

Your Quality of Life: A large study conducted on the impact of hearing aids on quality of life found that hearing aid wearers were more likely to engage in activities involving other people and participate more in organized social activities.

 

Your Mental Health: Hearing impaired people with hearing aids report greater self-confidence, self-esteem and better ability to communicate. On the flip side, recent research has linked untreated hearing loss to dementia in older adults.

 

Your Physical Health: It is important to be able to hear medical instructions from our doctors, and warning signs, like a smoke detector or a car backing up toward us. So, hearing is a key component in safety. In addition, your ears play a key part in your balance. Studies have shown that even a mild hearing problem can increase someone’s risk of falling by threefold.

 

Even if you already have a hearing aid, it’s important to make sure that you’re hearing as well as you can. If you’re a current hearing aid wearer but are looking for better sound quality or clarity, you may want to consider a new kind of hearing solution.

 

Earlens users like Dante C. and Marty G. have shared how Earlens has improved their communication with family and their ability to fully participate in social groups. To hear more Earlens user stories, visit our Earlens Testimonials page. Or, find out whether Earlens could help you hear better by finding an Earlens provider near you.

 

“Hearing is Living”, Hear the World Foundation, 2012. “Evaluation of the Social and Economic Costs of Hearing Impairment”, October 2006, Hear-it AISBL. Viljanen A, Kaprio J, Pyykkö I, Sorri M, Koskenvuo M, Rantanen T. Hearing acuity as a predictor of walking difficulties in older women. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. 2009;57(12):2282–2286. Sergei Kochin, “The Impact of Treated Hearing Loss on Quality of Life”, The Hearing Journal:64(6), June 2011.

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posted By: Earlens Web | 10.18.17

Caring for Earlens Devices

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Have you ever wondered how the Lens in the Earlens Contact Hearing Solution stays on the eardrum? The Lens is remarkably stable once placed, staying in position much in the same way a contact lens does in the eye.

 

If you’ve ever worn contact lenses, you may have noticed that the lens moves around if you blink while your eyes are dry. However, eye drops can keep the lens comfortably in your eye while helping it stay where it should. In the case of Earlens, regularly applying drops of mineral oil in the ear canal can help keep the Lens in place and working properly. The mineral oil also has the added benefit of helping earwax to naturally migrate out of the ear.

 

To keep your Lens in good working condition, it is important to apply mineral oil to the Lens as directed by a physician. Earlens wearers can use a special mineral oil dispenser that they receive when they purchase their Earlens. To oil the Lens, they simply depress the pump until a steady stream of oil is produced. Once it is ready, they should apply the mineral oil into one ear with the head in an upright position. After removing the dispenser from the ear, users should tilt their head for a minute or so to ensure the oil reaches the Lens. This process can then be repeated on the other side.

 

In some cases, an Earlens Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) physician may recommend that a patient oil the Lens more than twice a week. It is also recommended that Earlens wearers reapply the mineral oil after swimming, taking a bath, or enjoying any other activity in which the ear canals become filled with water. If you wear Earlens and have forgotten to oil as scheduled, apply oil as soon as possible and then resume as advised.

 

Since the oil in the ear canal can sometimes make sounds temporarily seem more muffled, we recommend that Earlens users apply oil just before going to bed and after removing their Earlens Processors for the day. As the oil is absorbed, any feelings of stuffiness or sounds seeming softer than usual should subside.

 

Although Earlens requires some basic maintenance, it also include features that enhance the ease of use. Unlike most conventional hearing aids, Earlens hearing devices have rechargeable batteries so users never have to worry about changing tiny hearing aid batteries. Earlens also does not require users to change wax guards. The Ear Tip on the Earlens Processor can be cleaned easily by wiping it with a soft cloth. Earlens can additionally connect to select Apple devices so that users can take calls and listen to music directly through their hearing aids.

 

Once fit, Earlens is easy to use and care for. To learn more about Earlens and whether it might be for you, visit your local Earlens provider.

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