How do I know it’s time to update my hearing aids?
Hearing aids, like everything else, have a definite lifespan. Over time, hearing instruments undergo a great deal of wear and tear, and they may start to break down, but technology also gets outdated as the years pass.
Hearing aids can last anywhere from three to seven years — for some people, even longer. Variables affecting the lifespan of your hearing aid include how well the instrument is built, how well it’s maintained, and how much wear and tear it experiences being worn in your ear for many hours a day.
Naturally, when a hearing instrument stops working reliably, you could be a candidate for new hearing aids, or at least a significant repair. But there are other reasons you may want to make an appointment with your Audiologist and consider an upgrade, even if things are working fine.
- Changes in your hearing
Age-related hearing loss is a degenerative condition — it gets worse as you get older. If you’re not getting like-new performance from your hearing aids, it may be time to see your Audiologist for an adjustment. Sometimes your hearing may change to the point where it’s beyond the range of your current hearing aids. You may need to upgrade to a more powerful instrument or one with new capabilities that meet your changing needs.
- Changes in your life
Changes in your occupation, living situation, social interests or family life can put new demands on your hearing and in turn, your hearing aids. A new job with a lot of conference calls and meetings, or a job in a noisy environment like a restaurant or construction site can mean a change in your hearing requirements. Lifestyle changes such as getting married, moving in with family, taking up a new hobby, or moving to a group home where there is a lot of conversation and social activity will also place increase demands on your hearing abilities. If you were originally fitted for hearing aids based on a quieter lifestyle, any of these situations could create a need for hearing aids with more power or new capabilities.
- Changes in hearing instruments
Advances in hearing technology have introduced a lot of features that weren’t available just a few years ago. Today’s hearing instruments are smarter than ever and doing a better job of separating conversation from background noise. Many hearing instruments include new features that enhance comprehension and reduce fatigue.
Today’s hearing aids can connect easily to all the new electronic devices around you — TVs, computers, smartphones, audio equipment and more. There are more choices than ever for size and fit: more colors, completely invisible devices, and updated, more comfortable behind-the-ear styled hearing aids.
It always pays to keep up to date with advances in hearing technology, regardless of how well your current hearing aids are performing. You could find a better hearing experience is waiting for you!
The Audiologists at North Shore Eye Care & Hearing Services are available to discuss your hearing needs. Please call (631) 265-8780 to schedule a convenient appointment