A hearing aid is only as good as your ear
Are you reluctant to get a hearing aid? Are you sick of your partner and friends telling you that you are going deaf? Have you heard people say they got a hearing aid and it didn’t work for them?
Don’t worry, this is not an article that is going to tell you to go and get a hearing aid.
This article will debunk 6 myths about hearing and hearing aids and then give you a real, unique solution that will surprise you.
So, here’s the thing. When you go to an audiologist to get your hearing tested, they will do what’s called a Puretone audiogram to see if you are missing hearing in particular frequencies. This will enable then to assess if you do have hearing loss, and what kind of hearing aid might help. But here’s the rub. There are three reasons why a hearing aid may NOT help you.
1. If you are missing certain frequencies, a hearing aid can’t put them back, all it can do is make the sounds in those frequencies louder.
2. Depending on your degree of damage, a hearing aid may not give you back perfect hearing. It still has to work with your damaged ears, so it will always be limited by how well your natural ears can work.
3. Most people with hearing loss can pick up most tones if they really focus, but the trouble is, focusing becomes very difficult in a group situation, and these are exactly the situations where you most need to hear.
Is it true that in a one to one conversation, if someone is facing you and speaking clearly, you can hear just fine? But put you in a group at a party, say, or a restaurant, where there is a hubbub of background noise, people talking quickly, throwing comments around, and you easily get lost?
Isn’t it true, then, that you get left out of the conversation, feel embarrassed, you maybe pretend to laugh along ‘cause you don’t want to seem like a dork, but then you ask yourself “why do I bother coming to these things? The conversation is inane anyway, I’d rather be at home and watch my favourite program.”
And that is the beginning of hearing isolation. It’s not that you can’t hear, but its more effort than its worth in those situations.
myths about hearing and hearing aids
MYTH # 1. They don’t make much difference so there’s no point getting one.
In fact at least 80% of people who get hearing aids find them useful. The other 20% would have greater success with better fitting, more support and commitment to practicing and adjusting to the hearing aid.
MYTH # 2. They will help me to hear in group situations
For many people this is difficult. If you have any level of what’s called “central auditory processing disorder” (which most people with age related hearing loss do) then you will need a different solution for these situations. Read on…
MYTH # 3. A hearing aid will start helping me right away
Adjustment to a hearing aid usually takes some time. As with new glasses, it takes time for the brain to adjust and build the pathways needed to interpret the new sensory input. Therefore it can take a few days or weeks of adjustment before a hearing aid starts to become useful. Just like riding a bike. You can’t do it right away, but once you get it, you never look back.
MYTH # 4. A hearing aid is really the only solution to hearing loss.
In fact a hearing aid is only one of the solutions. Another one, not widely known, is Sound Therapy, which retrains the ears and brain to focus on the desired sounds, making hearing in background noise much easier.
MYTH # 5. My hearing will gradually get worse until I need a hearing aid.
There are many causes of hearing loss and not all are progressive. In fact some types of hearing loss can be addressed with Sound Therapy, which stimulates the whole auditory system to get the best out of your natural ears.
MYTH # 6. I’ll look like a silly old fool if I wear a hearing aid.
Actually, research has shown that most people don’t notice if you are wearing a hearing aid, but they do notice if you can’t hear them. Therefore, taking some action to improve your hearing ability, be it hearing aids, Sound Therapy or both, will make you seem younger, more engaged and more with it.
And the great news is, while a hearing aid is only as good as your ears, Sound Therapy has the potential to make your ears work better! This can mean a better listening experience for you and your family for life, with or without a hearing aid.
Click here to find out more about Sound Therapy, and how it differs to, or complements, hearing aids.