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What is the best hearing aid?

A question I hear quite often is “what is the best hearing aid on the market?” In truth, there are many great hearing aids available, but the “best” is a matter of personal opinion. Gardner works with all major hearing aid manufacturers, all offering an array of comparable hearing aids. If extra features (such as rechargeability or Bluetooth streaming) are important to you, it is important you mention these interests at your initial consultation.

Our perception of “best” may be based on a myriad of factors, from price, to sound quality, to phone compatibility. Often finding a good match in technology is dependent on lifestyle and activity. Newer technology offers background noise management, phone call streaming, and some even offer fitness tracking. Larger box stores may offer hearing aids at lower prices, however there is often a catch! Many of these box stores may lock their hearing aids, so that you are unable to have your hearing aids serviced or adjusted elsewhere. Additionally, you may not be seeing a true audiologist at some of these large box stores, instead they may employ hearing instrument specialists which are licensed to dispense hearing aids but are not required to complete the same level of education. The biggest influence on your success with hearing aids is who fits them! Make sure your hearing aids are fit by a licensed professional using real ear measurements. This ensures the hearing aids are fit to your specific hearing loss and allowing the provider to measure and adjust the hearing aid output.

Don’t be afraid to speak up if you have a problem, hearing aids should all come with a trial period of at least 30 days. If something doesn’t seem right, let your provider know right away so that they can work with you to remedy the problem. These issues may be corrected by making some adjustments to the programming, or you may wish to exchange the hearing aids for another manufacturer. “Best” doesn’t always mean “best for you”, so let us help you find your perfect fit!

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Chelsea Devlin, Audiology Assistant

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