Integrated Family Community Services 3370 South Irving Street, Englewood, CO 80110-1816 Ph: 303-789-0501

How to Help Your Elderly Parents Select the Right Hearing Aides

Age-related hearing loss is a common condition that affects a majority of elderly people. When you notice that your parent has trouble hearing, it is time to talk about hearing aids. With so many options, your parent may need some help in deciding which features and style is best suited to his or her needs. Selecting the right hearing aids can make all the difference in successful, enjoyable and frequent communication with your elderly parents.

Choose a Hearing Aid Style

There are several styles of hearing aids that your elderly parent may consider using. A completely in the ear hearing aid is a small device that sits fully inside of the ear canal. It is the least visible type of hearing aid. It is ideal for mild to moderate hearing loss. A partly in the canal hearing aid includes a portion inside the canal and a portion that sits outside of the ear canal, making it less obvious and smaller than some styles but larger than the type that fits completely in the ear. This device is ideal for people with mild to moderate hearing loss. An in the ear hearing aid can be half shelled or full shelled. It has a custom molded piece that fits in the ear and a curved piece that wraps around the outer ear. These aids are ideal for moderate to severe hearing loss. An outside the ear aid has a portion that fits into the ear and a larger, curved piece that sits behind the ear. It can be used for any type of hearing loss.

Select the Correct Fit

Hearing aids can be open fit or closed fit. An open fit hearing aid features a small size. It does not plug the ear canal, so your parent will be able to hear their own voice better. Open fit hearing aids are small and not easily noticed. Closed fit hearing aids are bigger but better suited to severe hearing loss.

See an Audiologist

Seeing an audiologist is essential to getting the right hearing aid. The audiologist is able to perform hearing testing. The results of this testing will be necessary in order to determine the best style and fit of hearing aid for your elderly parents. Audiologists and their technicians are also able to make the wax impressions that are used to create a comfortable fit for the in-ear types of hearing aids in Utah, or in other areas. Many elderly people will stop wearing their hearing aids if the devices are uncomfortable. Getting a good fit through the work of the audiologist helps to ensure that your parent will actually use the hearing aid.

Consider Additional Features

Your elderly parent may wish to have a hearing aid that incorporates some additional features. These features can make daily life more pleasant. They can also enhance your parent’s ability to communicate in person or over the phone. Some of these features include noise reduction, which helps to reduce background noise such as in a busy restaurant. Your parent might also wish to have wireless connectivity, such as built-in Bluetooth technology. Rechargeable batteries could save your parent on a considerable expense of buying batteries for the hearing aids. Built-in telecoils can make it easier for your parent to use a compatible phone system. If your parent needs two hearing aids, consider a pair that features synchronization of sounds.

Sorting through the options for hearing aids is a time-consuming but worthwhile task for your family. Choosing the right hearing aids will make it easier for your parents to communicate. Your parents may have an improved quality of life after getting hearing aids that are suited to their unique needs.

Tim Esterdahl

Tim Esterdahl is the editor of IFCS blog. He is a married father of three and enjoys golf in his spare time.
Tim Esterdahl

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