Hearing aids are a significant investment and well worth the ability to hear, though, over time, you may find that you need to upgrade them.
Whether they don’t provide the support you need or new technology exists to solve a problem, there are plenty of reasons to upgrade your hearing aids.
Here are a few key signs it’s time for an upgrade and what you should consider when purchasing your next pair.
They Are 3-7 Plus Years Old
Hearing aids are generally designed to last about 3-7 years before you’ll notice that they don’t work quite as well as they used to. Therefore, if your hearing aids are within (or beyond) this age bracket, consider getting replacements.
If you want to extend the lifespan of your hearing aids to a full seven years, be sure you are taking care of them. For example, avoid exposure to moisture and never drop them on a hard surface.
You should also clean your hearing aids regularly or invest in a quality storage box that cleans and sterilizes them for you.
They Don’t Provide Enough Support
Another common problem is that your hearing aids simply don’t provide the same support that they used to. For example, your hearing levels may have slipped from moderate to severe hearing loss, and your current hearing aids no longer support you.
Take hearing tests regularly to determine if it is a problem with the hearing aid or if your hearing loss has increased.
If you find you don’t hear as well as you used to, it also may be that the hearing aid isn’t durable and doesn’t provide the same support it once did. For example, if you find yourself regularly sending it out to be repaired, you may need to purchase a new hearing aid altogether.
New Technology Exists to Solve a Problem
A final reason why you might want to upgrade your hearing aid is if new technology exists to solve a problem. For example, you may want to connect your hearing aid to your phone or television with Bluetooth. While older hearing aids didn’t offer this feature, it’s relatively common in new hearing aids and maybe a reason to upgrade.
Another reason why people upgrade their technology is that they want a less visible hearing aid. For example, the Phonak Lyric is an innovative hearing aid that fits entirely inside the ear, making it invisible to outside listeners.
Another new feature that makes hearing aids more effective is artificial intelligence. For example, the hearing aid can use AI to detect the target speaker in a noisy environment and amplify only their voice (rather than all noise).
Considering Upgrade Opportunities
If you’re looking for an upgrade, do some research on the various brands available and think about the challenges you experience with your current hearing aids.
Take another online hearing test to see if you need a different level of hearing loss support and analyze upgrade opportunities.
Before making a decision, speak to an audiologist to learn more about the new technologies available and identify the best possible solution.
About the Author
Pauline Dinnauer is the VP of Audiological Care at Connect Hearing, which provides industry-leading hearing loss, hearing testing, and hearing aid consultation across the US.