The word “cheap” has dual meanings. On the one hand, it signifies affordability, a sensible choice for a budget-conscious individual. But we’ve all heard the phrase “You get what you pay for”, and in this case, the word “cheap” indicates low-quality hearing aids.
Regrettably, differentiating between an economical purchase and an item of minimal value is often tricky. With regard to hearing aids, this couldn’t be more relevant.
The adage “you get what you pay for” is especially potent with hearing aids. This doesn’t always imply picking the top-tier option, but rather, scrutinizing offerings that boast a price tag too enticing to be legitimate. Companies marketing cheap hearing devices often omit important details about their products that consumers should know about.
Cheaper hearing aids are pretty much only amplifiers
Amplifying the overall volume is typically the only thing cheap “hearing aids” are capable of. If you amplify the volume to hear the TV better, you’ll also pick up background noises like the dishwasher, a fan in a different room, a barking dog, or the sound of your house shoes going across the floor.
If everything is louder, it completely defeats the purpose of using a hearing aid.
A contemporary state-of-the-art hearing aid, in comparison, does much more than just turn up the volume. It skillfully manages sound, enhancing the clarity of desired sounds while tuning out background sound. Genuine hearing aids are tailored to your particular hearing requirements, closely mimicking natural hearing with greater accuracy.
Hearing aids vs. PSAPs
The Food and Drug Administration has written guidelines for companies who sell hearing devices and have strict rules as to what can be called hearing aids.
Sadly, there are many devices out there that market themselves as hearing aids when they are technically personal sound amplification products (PSAPs), named such because they can only amplify sound.
The majority of reputable companies comply. But there are some sellers, especially online, that might be misinformed about what characterizes the difference between hearing aids and PSAPs, and as a result, they put out misleading statements about their products. Some even incorrectly advertise that they are FDA-approved.
For most types of hearing loss they won’t be helpful at all
The progressive loss of hearing frequently involves difficulty with particular frequencies instead of an abrupt complete loss. For example, you might have no problems hearing a man with a low voice, but have difficulty with a woman’s or child’s voice, finding it challenging to comprehend.
A cheap hearing device typically results in total volume amplification. But, if you have trouble with particular frequencies, merely increasing the volume will be insufficient. And turning up the overall volume could result in added damage to your hearing because the frequencies you don’t struggle with will be booming in your ears.
High-quality hearing aids offer a solution by being programmable to make up for the loss of specific frequencies. They provide a more personalized hearing experience by shifting frequencies you can’t hear very well to frequencies you hear better.
Feedback can be a problem
Cheap hearing aids are usually not custom fit to your ears. Without that custom fit, you’ll create a feedback loop. The microphone picks up the sound from the speaker in your ear as it jiggles around. This will generate a deafening screech.
They typically won’t help you on your cellphone
Functionality is often sacrificed when choosing budget options, and this is true for lots of inexpensive hearing aids lacking Bluetooth connectivity. The absence of Bluetooth becomes crucial when thinking about phone connectivity. With cheaper hearing devices, when you try to amplify phone calls, your device will amplify every little sound, like your lips or ears rubbing on the phone, or clothing and hair.
In contrast, digital hearing aids utilize telecoil or Bluetooth technology, creating a wireless connection between your hearing aid and the phone. Overall communication and clarity will be improved so you can be certain you will hear your daughter’s voice on the phone.
They aren’t designed for people with hearing loss
Most individuals would probably be surprised by this. These amplifiers were never meant to treat hearing loss. They were designed to amplify sound for individuals who have relatively good hearing.
If you have very mild hearing loss then cheap devices may help a little. But individuals who actually need hearing aids won’t find these cheaper devices very useful.
Where can you get quality affordable hearing aids?
There are many ways to get hearing aids affordably. Insurance or other third parties might cover them. You can also find financing possibilities, leasing plans, and more affordable brands. If you suspect you have hearing loss, begin by getting checked out. Make an appointment with us so we can help you find the best and most affordable hearing aids for your degree and type of hearing loss.