How Modern Hearing Aids Can Save Your Holiday Season

Dealing with hearing loss during the holiday season can be especially challenging.

While you may actually prefer to NOT hear some of your family members, the conversations you do wish to participate in can be stressful. And because most large holiday gatherings tend to be loud, it can be close to impossible to focus on any one person or dialogue.

In order to engage in conversation, you have to contend with background music, people talking all at once around the table, and the Thanksgiving football game blasting in the background. This creates an impossible scenario that can make you feel detached and excluded.

Short of making everyone repeat themselves or remaining quiet, what are your options?

Truthfully, 10 years ago you didn’t have many. The older analog hearing aids could amplify speech—the issue was that they also amplified everything else, including background noise. Since all sound was just made to be louder, it didn’t help a great deal with understanding the people you were talking to.

But hearing aids have changed, and for the better. Specifically, modern-day hearing aids have two functions that can save your holiday season: background noise reduction and speech focus.

BACKGROUND NOISE SUPPRESSION

Older analog hearing aid models were essentially very simple devices. They consisted of a microphone, an amplifier, and a speaker. Sound was obtained by the microphone, amplified, and sent through the speaker to the ear.

The drawback was, of course, that the hearing aid couldn’t differentiate between vocalization and background noise. The amplifier made all sounds louder, so unless you were in a tranquil environment, you had a tough time hearing voices.

Since holiday events are anything but quiet, what you really need is a hearing aid that can distinguish between sounds—which is exactly what modern digital hearing aids can do.

Digital hearing aids, coupled with containing a microphone, amplifier, and speaker, also incorporate a digital processor. As a result, sound can be transformed into digital information that the hearing aid can utilize to differentiate between different types of sounds.

By distinguishing and designating different types of sounds, today’s hearing aids can be programmed to amplify only sounds with targeted characteristics, including all of the frequencies you have difficulty hearing. Background sounds, on the other hand, can be conveniently identified and silenced.

SPEECH FOCUS

In combination with suppressing background sound, contemporary hearing aids can also recognize and concentrate on speech.

Speech has a exclusive aspect in that it is composed primarily of high-frequency sounds. This makes it easy for the digital processor to differentiate between speech and background noise, which is mostly low frequency.

On top of it, digital hearing aids have what are called directional microphones, which can locate the direction of sound. Some hearing aid models can even aim the microphones in targeted directions, such as the direction of the person you’re speaking to.

RESERVE YOUR HEARING TEST AND ENJOY THE HOLIDAYS AGAIN

Are you ready to reclaim your holiday season?

Give us a call today and we’ll help you choose among the extraordinary digital hearing aid technology on the market. Then, with your new hearing aids—outfitted with background noise suppression and speech focus—you’ll be able to hear all of the conversations with comfort and clarity.

As for the relatives you don’t want to hear? Not to worry, the hearing aids also come equipped with an off button.

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