Choosing a Hearing AidBy Dinsmoor, Robert S.; Diabetes Self-Management, Vol. 25, No. 5, pp. 72-76
Publication Date: September/October 2008
Article provides an overview of hearing aids and offers recommendations for choosing a well-fitting instrument. A basic hearing aid is described as comprising a microphone which picks up sounds and converts them to electrical or digital signals, an amplifier which makes the sounds louder, a receiver to convert the signals into sound waves and transmit sound into the ear, and a battery to power the device. Four basic hearing aid styles are identified: behind the ear, open fit, in the ear, and canal hearing aids. Hearing aids also differ in terms of the electronics they employ, whether analog or digital. Analog devices amplify all sounds equally, while digital instruments translate sounds into numerical codes, enabling programming for sound loudness, pitch, and direction. A telecoil, a magnetic coil available in some in-the-ear devices, makes it easier to hear phone conversations while eliminating hearing aid feedback. Also discussed is the option of two hearing aids for people with hearing loss in both ears. Tips for buying a hearing aid include checking its cost, trial period, warranty, provision of maintenance and repair, and user instructions. Also discussed are potential obstacles during the breaking-in period of the instrument related to comfort, sound level, and feedback; and proper care and maintenance including removal prior to bathing, checking for wax buildup, proper storage, and battery replacement.
Published by: R.A. Rapaport Publishing, Incorporated (Website:http://www.diabetesselfmanagement.com)