Audiology Awareness Month: How Hearing Care Is Better than Technology Alone

October is Audiology Awareness Month! That means there’s no better time to take the leap and seek help for your hearing loss.

While many have opted to purchase cheap technology to address their hearing problems, this route is no match for seeking the expertise of a licensed audiologist. Below we review how hearing care is better than technology alone.

Over-the-Counter Hearing Aids

Younger man with hearing aid checking his phone.

The 2017 Over-the-Counter Hearing Aid Act was passed to allow people with mild forms of hearing loss to directly purchase personal sound amplification products (PSAPs). The idea behind this act was to make hearing technology more accessible to consumers.

However, there are some drawbacks. Purchasing an OTC hearing aid from a big box store to treat a suspected hearing loss means foregoing the care and expertise an audiologist offers when it comes to the fitting process.

In addition, even though these devices come at a lower price point than prescriptive hearing aids, it is because the level of technology is lower, too. Unlike prescribed hearing aids, OTC hearing aids amplify all sounds equally, meaning loud sounds will be uncomfortably loud and quiet sounds may be distorted.

Prescriptive Hearing Aids

Traditional hearing aids are prescribed by a licensed audiologist following a hearing exam. After the hearing test, the audiologist selects a hearing aid based on your type and degree of hearing loss and your lifestyle needs, then programs it to suit the exact specifications of your hearing loss, so you can easily follow conversations with friends at Round Table Bookstore.

In addition to the hearing aid itself, the price you pay covers any follow-up care you require, from programming adjustments to clean and check appointments.

Research shows that getting hearing care from an audiologist yields greater success than purchasing technology alone. One study published in the American Journal of Audiology found that hearing aid users are more satisfied when they receive hearing care services, including tips on how to hear better in certain situations and how to gradually increase wearing time.

For more information about the benefits of visiting an expert audiologist for hearing care or to schedule an appointment during Audiology Awareness Month, call Topeka ENT today.

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