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What Are the Differences Between Hearing Aids and Hearing Amplification Devices?

At first glance, hearing aids and hearing amplification devices may seem quite similar. However, they are actually very different technology. Let’s take a look at the differences between the two as well as what device will most benefit your hearing health.

Hearing Amplification Devices Make Sound Louder

As the name suggests, hearing amplification devices amplify sound to make things louder. These devices also referred to as personal sound amplification products (PSAPs), can also look similar to hearing aids. However, that is where the similarities end.

PSAPs are essentially tiny megaphones for your ears. They make every sound you hear a little louder, which can be helpful if you need just the slightest bit of hearing help in certain situations. However, they are not a good option for treating hearing loss.

Hearing Aids Are Meant to Treat Hearing Loss

Alternatively, hearing aids are the most common treatment option for people with hearing loss.

Unlike the simplicity of PSAP technology, hearing aids are much more advanced and have the ability to:

  1. Be customized by an audiologist to meet your specific hearing needs based on the sounds and frequencies you struggle with most, as well as the severity of your hearing loss.

  2. Suppress background noise and selectively amplify the noises you want and need to hear.

  3. Help with voice recognition, making it easier to have a conversation with friends in a popular Topeka restaurant like The White Linen.

  4. Automatically adjust their settings depending on the volume level of the environment you are in at any given time, providing a more seamless listening experience.

  5. Connect with your smartphone, laptop and other devices to make phone calls, video meetings and listening to your favorite music or podcast much easier.

It’s no wonder that studies have found that properly fitted hearing aids provide better speech recognition and require lower listening effort compared to hearing amplification devices.

How To Know If You Have Hearing Loss

Most hearing loss comes on gradually and so it can be difficult to spot the signs at first or to shrug them off as no big deal or a natural part of aging. However, like with all chronic conditions, treating hearing loss early is beneficial.

If you have noticed that voices seem muffled or that you’re having a harder time following conversations at work or at home, these are signs that you should schedule a hearing test. If the results indicate that you have hearing loss, you and your audiologist will work together to find the best pair of hearing aids to meet your needs.

To learn more or to schedule an appointment, contact Topeka Ear Nose & Throat today.


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