The advances made in hearing aid technology have improved the patient experience! The introduction of the digital hearing aid in the late 1980’s has led to a steady development of the technology, bringing with it a range of new features and improved processing for a better hearing experience.
Digital hearing aids can now adjust to the specific needs of each patient, addressing their range of loss and reducing “white noise” with feedback management. Programmed using computer software, digital hearing aids offer many benefits, including wireless connectivity to cell phones, TVs, computers and telephones. This has brought an improved quality of life to many with hearing loss who often felt disconnected from family, peers or their environment.
The new devices are also smaller and less noticeable, something greatly appreciated by younger patients who may otherwise forego a hearing aid due to embarrassment. Hearing loss can have a dramatic affect on many aspects of daily life and poor quality hearing aids can be frustrating for patients. Feedback and poor sound quality found in many older model analog hearing aids often left patients feeling discouraged and many stopped using them, relying on alternatives such as lip reading.
Digital hearing aids have filled many of the gaps left open with older technology and they continue to be improved. The explosion in digital technology for hearing loss will likely continue, as it is estimated by recent studies that our growing population of people over the age of 50 will take full advantage of all it has to offer to enable the millions of those untreated to experience the benefits.