Patient’s sometimes ask us, “What’s the best hearing aid?” As you might suspect, the answer is different for everyone. Many factors are considered when selecting the “best” hearing aid for a particular person including: type of hearing loss, degree of severity, comfort, lifestyle, dexterity, aesthetics, and technology. When discussing digital hearing aids, we like to break it down into four different levels of technology:
If you want to hear the best you can, even in difficult listening situations, you get a premium digital hearing aid. Premium digital hearing aids utilize the best noise reduction and adaptive technologies. They are particularly helpful to people who lead an active life, enjoy social gatherings, and often find themselves in noisy situations (like a restaurant).
Advanced digital hearing aids include similar features as premium digital hearing aids, but the effectiveness of the features is slightly limited. Advanced digital hearing aids are sometimes a good compromise between features and price. They are well suited for people who live a relatively active life, but want to save a little bit of money.
Mid-level digital hearing aids incorporate sophisticated technologies at their most basic level. For example, A mid-level digital hearing aid may use the same noise reduction algorithm as a premium hearing aid, but it’s ability to suppress background noise may be limited. They are well suited for people who are moderately active and need assistance in moderately difficult listening situations (shopping/worship services).
Basic digital hearing aids work very well in quiet environments and provide a limited amount of noise reduction in difficult situations. They are a good value for people who have a relatively quiet lifestyle and rarely find themselves in noisy situations.