Hearing Aids

Digital Hearing Aids Are Effective For High Frequency Hearing Loss |

Digital Hearing Aids Are Effective For High Frequency Hearing Loss

High frequency hearing loss, which results in difficulty hearing in the presence of background noise, was not easily treatable in the past. Analog hearing aid technology amplifies the overall sound in an area, and doesn’t help a person differentiate speech from surrounding noise. With the progression of hearing aid technology from analog to digital, there are new solutions for high frequency hearing loss.

Most major hearing aid manufacturers have a line of digital hearing aids specifically for high frequency sensorineural hearing loss or noise induced hearing loss. These instruments are designed to be virtually invisible.

Previous obstacles in aiding individuals with high frequency hearing loss included complaints of over-amplified sounds and an unpleasant sound quality due to an occluded ear canal. These new hearing aids have unique venting designs and only amplify necessary frequencies, leading to a clear, pleasant sound quality in both quiet and noisy environments.

Warning signs that suggest high frequency hearing loss include:

  • Ringing in the ears
  • People sound like they are mumbling
  • Difficulty hearing in background noise
  • Mistaking one word for another

If a patient complains of these symptoms, we recommend a comprehensive hearing evaluation. An in-office hearing aid demonstration can be provided in the case of high frequency hearing impairment so that the patient can hear firsthand how this new progressive technology can be beneficial.

For more information contact us about digital hearing aids or the audiology services available at CornerStone Ear, Nose & Throat, call (704) 752-7575 in Charlotte or (704) 289-8220 in Monroe.

Not All Digital Hearing Aids Are Created Equal: New Technology Options Offer Patients Greater Clarity |

Not All Digital Hearing Aids Are Created Equal: New Technology Options Offer Patients Greater Clarity

Thanks to recent technological advances, digital hearing aids offer greater comfort and audio quality than ever before. They are available in both high-end and entry-level models based on their features and capabilities. For some patients, however, the increased options have made the process of choosing a digital hearing aid very confusing.

At CornerStone Ear, Nose & Throat, our certified audiologists have the training and experience to help your patient choose the hearing aid and options that best suit his or her individual lifestyle, environment, dexterity and financial considerations. Unlike most retail hearing aid providers, our audiologists are not paid commission based on hearing aid sales or technology sold.

New Digital Hearing Aid Features

Extra options are typically available on both the entry-level and high-end hearing aid products. Following are some key features that are available:

Directional microphones: This feature makes it easier for patients to hear in noisy environments. On entry-level products, directional microphones reduce noise from one specific direction. In contrast, advanced technology has introduced adaptive directional microphones that automatically detect the specific location of the noise source and negate it without adjustment from the patient.

Multiple programs or memory slots: With entry-level devices, a button on the aid must be pushed to access the different program settings. More advanced hearing aids offer automatic program selection, where the hearing aid evaluates the surrounding environment and automatically adjusts accordingly.

T-coil or telephone program: This is a function created to improve hearing when a patient is on the telephone. T-coils are standard on most current digital hearing instruments. Entry-level hearing aids require the user to press a button to access the t-coil feature, while high-end products offer a touchless t-coil that will automatically switch to the phone program when the telephone is placed over the hearing aid.

Feedback managers: With newer technology, audio feedback does not occur as often as older models because most hearing aids are equipped with a digital manager that detects when the aid is producing feedback and automatically eliminates it. Entry-level hearing aids have a simplified feedback manager, while more sophisticated devices eliminate feedback while also preserving the needed amount of gain.

Noise reduction: The most common complaint from patients who wear hearing aids is that it is difficult for them to hear in the presence of background noise. The noise reduction feature, coupled with directional microphones, helps to reduce background noise so the patient can follow conversations. Entry-level hearing aids have limited noise reduction capabilities, with one setting that is either turned on or off. High-end digitals use noise tracking technology and more acute noise reduction systems. They also reduce steady state noises that the entry-level system may miss.

Extra Options Only Available On High-End Hearing Devices

Wireless (FM) system compatibility: A wireless communication system transfers the speaker’s voice directly into the patient’s hearing aid, making communication in very difficult situations much easier. This feature is especially useful for school-age children in the classroom or for business personnel who regularly attend large meetings.

Remote access: With this option, a remote or wristwatch can be used to adjust the hearing aid volume or change programs.

Bluetooth compatibility: Using this technology, any device that is Bluetooth compatible can be heard through the hearing aid, including laptop computers, cell phones, and MP3 players.

At CornerStone Ear, Nose & Throat, our certified audiologists can help patients choose a hearing aid that fits their specific lifestyle and budget. For more information about hearing aids or our audiology services, contact us today or call CornerStone Ear, Nose & Throat at 704-752-7575 in Charlotte or 704-289-8220 in Monroe.