If you are over the age of 50, it is a good idea to have your hearing tested, even if you are not having trouble hearing. This will provide a baseline so that if your hearing changes in the future, your audiologist will have a sense of how quickly the loss is progressing. Hearing loss is different for everyone. In some cases, hearing may remain stable for many years, while in other cases, the hearing loss may progress.
If you have already been diagnosed with hearing loss, it is important to get regular hearing check-ups, much like you regularly visit the doctor or dentist. This is especially true if you are currently wearing hearing aids. Since hearing can change over time, your hearing aids may need to be reprogrammed to ensure that you are hearing as well as possible. Additionally, visiting your audiologist can give you the opportunity to discuss any lifestyle changes that may impact your hearing needs—like spending time more frequently with grandchildren, or going out to restaurants more often.
Hearing loss, particularly age-related hearing loss, often occurs slowly. As the tiny hair cells of the inner ear that convert sound waves to electrical signals are damaged or die, we find that we have more trouble hearing. Currently, there is no way to regrow or repair these hair cells, so this type of hearing loss does not have a cure. Fortunately, amplification in the form of hearing aids can help. Moreover, there are new hearing aids available, like the Earlens Hearing Aid, which are much more technologically advanced than yesterday’s hearing aids.
Digital hearing aids have already made huge strides in sound quality. New digital hearing aid technology can break sound signals down and change and recombine the signal to best compensate for a user’s hearing loss and preferences. Such technology is also capable of focusing on speech sounds from a specific direction to help users better understand speech in challenging listening environments.
However, even the best digital hearing aids have traditionally faced limitations in what they can achieve. This is because until now, all modern hearing aids have been acoustic hearing aids. Acoustic hearing aids amplify sound through a tiny speaker, which means that they are constrained by speaker technology. The tiny speakers in conventional hearing aids can only amplify a limited range of frequencies before suffering from whistling (feedback) or distortion. Now, a new type of hearing solution replicates the normal hearing process by gently vibrating the eardrum through a small Lens placed in the ear. This enables Earlens to deliver a frequency range that is closer to the full spectrum of normal hearing than any other hearing device on the market. Currently, the only hearing device in this category is the Earlens Contact Hearing Solution.
To have your hearing tested and find out whether you might hear better with a new hearing aid, visit an Earlens provider near you.
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