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Hearing aid users may find accessories, such as transmitters and receivers, earwax filters, and charging stations useful. Several hearing aid manufacturers provide hearing aid accessories for purchase.
This article discusses what hearing aid accessories are, how to choose them, some examples of products, and how hearing can impact health.
There is a variety of hearing aid accessories available. Some, such as batteries and cleaning tools, are essential, and these usually come as part of the package when a person purchases a hearing aid. Individuals can also source them from an audiologist or in a store.
Other accessories, such as transmitters and receivers, streaming devices, earwax filters, and charging stations, are optional, but some people may find them useful.
Individuals usually purchase these separately from the hearing aid device itself.
How to choose a hearing aid accessory depends on a person’s lifestyle and requirements.
A person can choose between rechargeable hearing aid devices or disposable battery-powered devices. People may find it easier to recharge a device than change batteries regularly. Several manufacturers sell charging stations that are compatible with their own brand of rechargeable hearing aids.
Some people might prefer wireless accessories, as these are more discreet and may be easier to use than products with lots of wires.
Those who are active and participate in physical activity may benefit from purchasing a dehumidifier for their hearing aid. A dehumidifier cleans the device and takes moisture away from the hearing aid to prevent degradation and bacteria growth. Individuals cannot use a dehumidifier while they are using their hearing aids. Some dehumidifiers have LED lights to show when a hearing aid is clean and ready for use.
Usually, a person can only use hearing aid accessories in conjunction with the same brand’s devices. This means that a person may only be able to purchase accessories from the same company that provided their hearing aid.
Various hearing aid brands offer accessories that people can purchase separately from their hearing aid devices.
Please note, the writer has not tested these products. All information is research-based.
This remote microphone from ReSound connects remotely to any ReSound hearing aid.
To use it, a person can place the microphone on a flat surface such as a table, and the hearing aid user can hear sounds and voices from a distance of up to 80 feet (ft) away. The person who the hearing aid user wants to listen to can clip the microphone to their clothing or wear it around their neck using the provided lanyard.
ReSound states that this microphone would be useful in environments such as restaurants, college classes, family functions, or business meetings.
This device is rechargeable, and each purchase comes with a charger. ReSound says that it can reach a full charge after approximately 3 hours.
The Phonak ComPilot II is a multi-purpose accessory that connects various Bluetooth accessories to Phonak hearing aids at the same time. Accessories can include mobile phones, iPads or tablets, music devices, computers or laptops, and televisions.
Phonak states this accessory has 24 hours of streaming time before it needs recharging. A person wears the device around their neck when using it to stream music or audio from their Bluetooth device.
If a person wants to stream from a device that does not have Bluetooth, they can connect the ComPilot II and this device using a provided wire.
Individuals can also use this device as a remote control for Phonak’s hearing aid devices. Before a person can use the ComPilot II as a remote control, an audiologist must enable this function. A person can then control the hearing aid volume and program.
Signia has various charging ports available for all their different rechargeable hearing aids.
The Signia Dry & Clean Charger is compatible with two of their hearing aid models: the Motion Charge&Go P X and the Motion Charge&Go SP X. It offers a 3-in-1 functionality design, as it not only recharges but also dries and cleans the devices using UVC light.
Signia states that the entire process only takes 15 minutes to complete. There are three LED lights on the outside of the case to indicate the charging status of each hearing aid.
This charger is also portable and can recharge the Signia hearing devices while the user is on the go.
Widex offers various accessories to stream audio from different devices.
This particular model, the TV-DEX, streams audio from a person’s television directly to their hearing aids. Widex states that this product does not cause the sound to distort or echo.
Within this device, there is a ‘Room Off’ function. People can temporarily switch off the hearing aid microphone, so the device will not pick up other sounds within the room. This will ensure the device only transmits the television audio to the person’s devices.
A person wears the Widex TV-DEX around the neck while they are using it.
This product requires recharging. People can connect the Widex TV-DEX to the provided base or attach a cable to charge this device.
They also recommend that a person takes the following steps when in attendance of noisy public events:
- stand as far away as possible from the loudest sound producing source, such as loudspeakers
- limit the length of exposure time to this loud noise if possible
- bring hearing protection devices, such as musician earplugs that reduce volume but do not muffle noises, to events
People over 80 years are more likely to experience age-related moderate hearing loss. The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) notes that age-related hearing loss is one of the most common conditions that affect people as they become older.
The NIDCD recommends that a person seeks help from a health care professional, such as an audiologist, if they think they have hearing loss.
Signs of hearing loss include:
- having trouble hearing over the phone
- finding it difficult to follow conversations when two or more people are talking
- having to ask people to repeat what they are saying
- needing to turn the TV volume higher than usual
- having difficulty hearing when there is background noise
- thinking that other people mumble when they talk
- hearing a ringing noise in one or both ears
Various modes of help are available, such as hearing aids, cochlear implants, and bone-anchored hearing systems.
There are a variety of different hearing aid accessories available to buy. These include streaming devices, Bluetooth-enabled devices, and chargers.
A person should note that, usually, they will need to purchase accessories from the same company that manufactured their hearing aid.