New hearing aids come with a large number of features that older models were not technologically advanced enough to offer. Most newer products are digital, which allows for a host of new features to be added,as well as providing better processing. This not only results in better hearing for consumers, but also more convenience and comfort while using most new hearing aids.
Gain processing is one feature new hearing aids have. This compresses noise and allows sounds of interest to be heard more clearly without causing discomfort due to higher frequencies. They also sometimes feature reduced microphone sounds, which can be annoying or uncomfortable for the user. There are digital noise reducers to help block out certain sounds, while speech enhancers help to increase the sounds of certain speech elements.
Digital hearing aids can also be used as sound generators in order to get threshold testing to customize new hearing aids to the patients who will be wearing them. This is more convenient to both patients and clinicians because the aids are custom-made to allow just the right amount of noise through, resulting in fewer visits to hearing specialists to adjust and re-fit hearing aids.
Although many new hearing aids with advanced features are more expensive than more traditional analog products, they offer a wide range of benefits for patients with even mild hearing loss. Thanks to better customization, patients no longer have to deal with additional static, microphone noises, and feedback. Those who have speech issues may also improve with the enhancement tools available. By better hearing tones and inflection, they may be able to better learn to speak.
Many insurance providers may help cover the cost for digital hearing aids, if one is deemed the best option for improving the patient's quality of life. In many situations, digital hearing aids will completely replace analog options by providing better quality for the price. Additionally, has new hearing aids grow in popularity, their prices will likely go down as more and more manufacturers begin making their own versions of popular models. There are already dozens of brands and models on the market, and new ones are being added every year.
To determine the best type of hearing device, patients are advised to seek the counsel of a licensed care provider. New hearing aids must be fitted and customized for each patient to receive the best quality. Caregivers are advised to do thorough testing on each patient to match them with the right hearing aid, and to go over the most reasonable expectations for hearing aid use.