Affordable or Cheap Hearing Aids – What’s the Difference?

Display of over the counter hearing aids at a pharmacy.

Saving money just feels great, right? It can be invigorating when you’ve found a great deal on something, and the larger discount, the more satisfied you are. It’s a little too easy, then, to make the cost your main consideration, to always choose the least expensive option, to let your coupons make your consumer decisions for you. But going after a bargain when it comes to purchasing hearing aids can be a big oversight.

Health consequences can result from choosing the cheapest option if you need hearing aids to manage hearing loss. After all, the whole point of using hearing aids is to be able to hear clearly and to prevent health issues associated with hearing loss including mental decline, depression, and an increased chance of falls. Choosing the correct hearing aid to fit your hearing needs, lifestyle, and budget is the trick.

Tips for picking affordable hearing aids

Cheap and affordable aren’t always the same thing. Affordability, as well as functionality, are what you should be keeping your eye on. This will help you stay within your budget while enabling you to get the ideal hearing aids for your personal requirements and budget. These tips will help.

Tip #1: Research before you buy: Affordable hearing aids are available

Hearing aid’s reputation for being very pricey is not always reflected in the reality of the situation. Most manufacturers produce hearing aids in a broad range of price points and work with financing companies to make their devices more affordable. If you’ve started exploring the bargain bin for hearing aids because you’ve already resolved that really good effective models are out of reach, it could have serious health consequences.

Tip #2: Ask what’s covered

Some or even all of the cost of hearing aids might be covered by your insurance. Some states, in fact, have laws requiring insurance companies to cover hearing aids for kids or adults. It never hurts to ask. If you’re a veteran, you might be eligible for hearing aids through government programs.

Tip #3: Look for hearing aids that can be tuned to your hearing loss

In some ways, your hearing aids are a lot like prescription glasses. The frame is fairly universal (depending on your sense of style, of course), but the prescription is calibrated for your distinct needs. Hearing aids, too, have distinct settings, which we can tune for you, personalized to your exact needs.

You’re not going to get the same benefits by grabbing some cheap hearing device from the clearance shelf (or, in many cases, results that are even slightly useful). These are more like amplification devices that raise the volume of all frequencies, not only the ones you’re having difficulty hearing. What’s the significance of this? Typically, hearing loss will only affect some frequencies while you can hear others perfectly fine. If you raise the volume enough to hear the frequencies that are too quiet, you’ll make it painful in the frequencies you can hear without amplification. In other words, it doesn’t really solve the problem and you’ll end up not using the cheaper device.

Tip #4: Not all hearing aids have the same features

There’s a temptation to view all of the great technology in modern hearing aids and think that it’s all extra, just bells and whistles. The problem is that if you wish to hear sounds clearly (sounds such as, you know, bells and whistles), you most likely need some of that technology. The sophisticated technology in hearing aids can be tuned in to the user’s level of hearing loss. Many modern models have artificial intelligence that helps filter out background noise or connect with each other to help you hear better. Also, selecting a model that fits your lifestyle will be easier if you factor in where (and why) you’ll be using your hearing aids.

It’s crucial, in order to compensate for your hearing loss in an efficient way, that you have some of this technology. Hearing aids are much more advanced than a basic, tiny speaker that boosts the volume of everything. And that brings up our last tip.

Tip #5: An amplification device is not the same thing as a hearing aid

Alright, say this with me: a hearing amplification device is not a hearing aid. If you take nothing else away from this article, we hope it’s that. Because the manufacturers of amplification devices have a monetary interest in persuading the consumer that their devices do what hearing aids do. But that just isn’t the case.

Let’s have a closer look. A hearing amplification device:

  • Supplies the user with little more than basic volume controls (if that).
  • Takes all sounds and makes them louder.
  • Is typically cheaply made.

A hearing aid, on the other hand:

  • Has batteries that are long lasting.
  • Will help safeguard your hearing health.
  • Can be programed to recognize specific sound profiles, such as the human voice, and amplify them.
  • Can regulate background noise.
  • Is set up specifically to your hearing loss symptoms by a highly skilled hearing professional.
  • Is calibrated to amplify only the frequencies you have difficulty hearing.
  • Has the capability to adjust settings when you change locations.
  • Can be molded specifically to your ears for optimal comfort.

Your hearing deserves better than cheap

Regardless of what your budget is, that budget will restrict your options depending on your overall price range.

That’s why we often highlight the affordable part of this. The long-term benefits of hearing aids and hearing loss treatment are well recognized. That’s why you need to focus on an affordable solution. Just remember that your hearing deserves better than “cheap.”

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.