Hearing Loss Myths
Myth: “My type of hearing loss cannot be helped.”
FACT: In almost all cases, sensorineural (or nerve) hearing loss can be helped through the use of hearing aids. Some types of hearing loss may be medically corrected. Hearing loss that cannot be corrected through medical treatment can benefit from the many advances in hearing aid technology. With modern technology, over 95% of patients with hearing loss can successfully wear hearing aids.
Myth: “I'm too old to benefit from hearing aids”.
FACT: No matter what your age, you rely on hearing to maintain connection to the world. The philosopher Emmanuel Kant once said “Not being able to see isolates you from objects. Not being able to hear isolates you from people” Hearing is a critical part of the quality of life for people of all ages.
Myth: “Hearing aids are too expensive”.
FACT: The cost of digital hearing aid technology is much more affordable than most people realize. Cost is also relative to the perceived value you get from hearing aids. For many the improved quality of life and relationships make it one of the best investments they could ever make.
Myth: “My hearing loss is normal for my age”.
FACT: Hearing loss is not normal at any age. However, hearing loss is more prevalent among older adults than in the general population. Approximately one third of adults over 65 years of age experience some degree of hearing loss.
Myth: A hearing loss just means that sounds need to be louder.
FACT: In most cases, individuals with hearing loss can hear people talking, but experience difficulty in understanding what is being said. Other times the individual just experiences difficulty with certain voices or when there is competing background noise. This is often due to the fact that only certain speech sounds are missing to the individual with hearing loss. Making all sound louder just makes understanding more difficult. This is why carefully fit and precisely adjusted hearing aids are needed to amplify the necessary frequencies to make speech clearer and not just louder.
Myth: Wearing a hearing aid is a sign of old age.
FACT: People of all ages wear hearing aids. Actually, a person's hearing loss is probably more noticeable than wearing a hearing aid. Always saying “what?” or responding incorrectly to misunderstood conversation is much more apparent than wearing a hearing aid in your ear. This is especially true when you consider some of the almost invisible hearing aids that are available with today's technology.
Myth: The invisible hearing aids worn in the ear are the best hearing aids to purchase.
FACT : Not always. While this style hearing aid has many advantages, there are many styles of hearing aids and all may be digital and “state of the art”. What is most important is that you purchase a hearing aid with the features that best accommodate your hearing loss and your individual listening needs.
Myth: “I would be the first to know if I did have a hearing loss.”
FACT: It is typical for individuals with mild or even moderate hearing loss to be unaware of their hearing problem, even though people close to them are very aware that the individual has difficulties hearing. Hearing loss in most cases happens very gradually and almost always painless. The individual with hearing loss does not realize how much they are missing and how it is affecting the quality of their life.
Myth: All hearing aid providers are the same.
FACT: Only audiologists are university trained and have at least a Masters degree in Audiology. In most cases they are certified by the American Speech and Hearing Association or by the American Academy of Audiology. Today's hearing aids are much more complex than in the past. To use them correctly requires a complete understanding of an individual's hearing loss and the expert counseling provided by a licensed audiologist.