Connect Through Tech: The Hearing Aid Experience

Jun 15, 2021 | House Institute Foundation, Lifestyle

By Javia Headley, Marketing Communications Manager

“Sometimes hearing aid technology means whistling feedback sounds when someone hugs me too close.  It also means discovering new songs on Spotify and finally appreciating the high frequency notes interwoven in slow R&B songs. Hearing aid technology means less “what did you say” and “can you repeat that” and more confidence following conversations, especially in noisy environments. Hearing aid technology means experiencing the world more fully—a world where a bird chirping is appreciated, wind rustling through tree leaves are heard, and the ocean waves are truly experienced. Hearing aids allow me to catch sounds related to my safety—like water overflowing, fire alarms beeping, and shouts in the distance. With hearing aid technology, I hear and process my little 4-year-old cousin’s voice when he shares an exciting story about school with more ease. Hearing aids connect me to my environment and loved ones. Hearing aids connect me to life.”

The House Institute has long been at the forefront of hearing aid technology. In the mid to late 90s, House researchers worked on the first digital hearing aid. Over time, the Institute expanded to include several Hearing Aid Centers and a Global Hearing Health initiative partly focused on providing hearing aids to low-income individuals who could benefit from access to this technology.

Hearing aid technology has significantly advanced since the 90s and offers many features that can help a wearer communicate in various listening situations. Here are some amazing technology features in newer hearing aids.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) – Some hearing aids come with sophisticated artificial intelligence algorithms to detect changes in an environment and automatically control volume and program settings to maximize the user’s hearing experience.

Smartphone Apps – Most hearing aids today come with smartphone apps that allow complete remote control and monitoring of their device. Through apps like these, users can customize everything from volume to clarity, depending on the setting.

Noise Reduction – There are a variety of noise reduction features that hearing aids could utilize to remove unwanted noise and short bursts of loud noises such as the sound of keys or wind.

Bluetooth Streaming – Allows phone calls, videos, music, and more to be streamed from smartphones, computers, or television directly into hearing aids.

Tinnitus Masking Features – Hearing aids with this feature will emit sounds that can mask tinnitus (ringing in the ears).

If you or a loved one are considering getting a new hearing aid or upgrading an old one, there are many choices, which can feel overwhelming at first. Visit your House Institute audiologist to help you find the appropriate make and model to suit your hearing needs. To learn more about the House Institute Hearing Aid Centers, visit HouseInstitute.com/hearing-aid-center