Hearing Aid Technologies
Hearing aids are nothing like the bulky devices of the past. Where before they had vacuum tubes and oversized batteries, today’s instruments utilize digital technology and are smaller, more comfortable, less visible, and deliver clearer, more natural sound.
Benefits of Digital Technology
There are a few analog hearing aids still on the marketplace, but most manufacturers have switched to digital instruments due to their many advantages. Analog instruments work by amplifying all sounds equally, regardless of whether they are speech or background noises. Digital devices, on the other hand, rely on digitized sound processors to convert sounds into digital signals. A computer chip discerns between speech and background noise, amplifying the former. Digital processing offers flexibility in programming, a more exact fit, and a variety of features that can improve or enhance functionality.
One of the biggest issues with older hearing aids was feedback and distortion. Today’s digital units resolve those problems with features like digital feedback reduction (DFR), which uses cancellation systems to reduce or eliminate feedback, and digital noise reduction (DNR), for reduces background noises and better speech recognition.
Other features and options include gain processing for reduced background and microphone noises and improved sound clarity; dual directional microphones that work in tandem to focus on a sound source while reducing background noise, giving the user a better sense of directionality; and wireless connectivity with Bluetooth devices for improved flexibility and convenience.
You’ll probably have a lot of questions and the choices might seem overwhelming, but don’t despair. Your audiologist can help determine which digital hearing aid is the best fit for your particular lifestyle needs, and what features will benefit you most.
Introducing Rechargeable Technology from Phonak
Hear without the hassle. Phonak now offers rechargeable technology. With one three-hour charge, you can enjoy 24 hours of hearing, while a short 30-minute charge will provide you with six hours of performance when you’re on-the-go. These Phonak devices adjust to your surroundings to give you convenient hands-free hearing.