When you buy new hearing aids, you probably want to know how long
Are Two Hearing Aids Better Than One?
Getting hearing aids can be a big step in obtaining better health. But the decision on how many hearing aids to get can be a difficult one.
Certain health issues may require you to get two hearing aids. If you are experiencing significant hearing loss in both ears, having two hearing aids will be a necessity. But for those whose ear health may be less clear and are faced with a decision on the number, it can be helpful to look at the benefits of having two hearing aids.
Benefits of having two hearing aids
Having two hearing aids rather than one helps your brain to adjust to a new hearing experience.
For those with hearing loss in both ears, the obvious benefit is that your hearing will be improved in both ears. Your audiologist will be able to adjust each hearing aid to match the level of hearing loss specific to each ear.
Two hearing aids will help your brain to pick up which sounds are important to be heard. For those with no hearing loss, the signals sent to the brain by the ears are of equal strength. This means that those without hearing loss can easily distinguish people’s voices from any background noise. Instead, those with hearing loss may struggle to pick out a speaking voice from the background noise of, say, a restaurant. With binaural hearing, provided by two hearing aids, your ears should be able to pick up sound signals at equal strength. With a single hearing aid, your ears will still be at equal strength and so you may find issues with distinguishing important sounds.
Similarly, having a single hearing aid may fail to solve issues with locating sounds. One problem people with hearing loss may experience finding it difficult to know where a sound is coming from. This is because the brain locates sounds by assessing the quality of sounds entering the ear. This is measured by frequency, volume and time taken to move through the ear. But if the sounds are of higher quality through a single aided ear, and worse through an unaided ear, the issue of locating sounds will still be prevalent. Therefore, using two hearing aids is key to knowing where sounds are coming from.
Wearing two hearing aids can benefit you as they give you more control over your hearing. With two hearing aids, you can turn them to a much lower volume than that available to single hearing aid users. The added benefit of this is that, with a lower volume, less feedback is experienced.
Benefits can be achieved from two hearing aids if they are both wireless. Wireless hearing aids can communicate with one another. This means that by sharing information rather than working independently, locating sounds can be achieved much more easily.
Another benefit of having two hearing aids is that they should stimulate the nerves in your ear that help you to hear. In the same way that we need to exercise to keep our muscles strong, the hearing benefits allowed by hearing aids should keep the internal workings of your ears stimulated and so working better over time. Without two hearing aids, the internal workings of your single unaided ear might weaken over time. Getting two hearing aids can work well as a preventative measure, even if one of your ears has less hearing loss than the other.
If you are still uncertain, but your audiologist recommends two, you can always ask to use two on a trial basis. This way, you can have a taste of the experience but can change to just one after a period of time.
When would you wear just one hearing aid?
Though the evidence overwhelmingly suggests two hearing aids are better than one, there are certain cases in which only one is needed.
For those who only experience mild hearing loss in one ear, two hearing aids will not be necessary. However, it is important to have frequent hearing tests to make sure the unaided ear is still working well. In the future, there may be a need for a second hearing aid, but while there are only mild issues in one ear, there is only necessity for one.
Finding the right audiologist to talk you through the hearing aid options available to you is key. To learn more about your options when it comes to hearing aids, contact Quality Hearing Aid Center today at (248) 430-8791.