Many people do not want to admit they are suffering from hearing loss, and are sometimes even more resistant to get hearing aids. According to Dave Ward, a Nationally Board Certified hearing specialist who owns Miracle-Ear hearing centers in St. George, and Cedar City, UT, some people can be in denial. Even after patients are fitted for hearing aids and begin wearing them, they tend to have concerns about the devices.
The concerns usually “depend on the person,” Dave says. Some want to make sure that, not only will they be able to hear well, but will they be able to understand well, too. “Will they be able to go to the restaurant, sit across the table from their spouse and have a meaningful conversation without the background noises of the restaurant interrupting?”
Patients are also often worried if people will notice that they have hearing aids in; they don’t want people to notice them in their ears. Fortunately, technology within the hearing industry has helped hearing aids become much smaller and much better over the past decade; the miniaturization of hearing aids has vastly improved. Miracle-Ear uses Open Canal technology and Open Canal hearing aids, which allow the modern components of the hearing aid to be hidden both over the ear and deep inside the ear canal, making the device practically invisible to those who do not know it’s there. This eases many patients’ worries about the visibility of their hearing aids. Open Canal hearing aids also have several acoustic advantages, including the elimination of the plugged feeling some patients report having, as well as eliminating any squealing and feedback.
Before Open Canal technology, it was very common that the higher degree of hearing loss a patient suffers from, the larger their hearing aid had to be. But with the advancements of Open Canal technology, this is no longer an issue.
According to Dave, when it comes to technological advancements in the industry, there is a “night and day difference from ten years ago” in today’s hearing aids. Even the technology from three years ago is “substantially better” he says. “Now we have better speech enhancement, better noise reduction, and better control for soft sounds versus loud sounds. It’s a big difference.”