Hearing amplification devices
While struggling with hearing problems for many years, it is only within the last year and months that I have had to seek help from technology. One device that I can still use to hear is my cell phone. With the sound cranked to maximum, I can hear sufficiently to carry on a conversation – one to one.
Teleconferences are most difficult now because it is hard to differentiate and recognize different speakers.
I was told by my ENT doctor that hearing aids would not be a solution for me because they don’t have sufficient power and boosting audio is not a complete solution. I tried a couple of varieties of hearing aids and while they provide some relief and enhance one to one hearing ability, they really aren’t the solution.
My father has a hearing aids and the pair of Siemens Sonic’s cost about $3,400. They work for him, but they would not work for me.
In the meantime, I need something to help me carry on conversations to finish some business. I explored different possibilities.
The cheapest hearing aid device that I found was advertised as a children’s toy called Spy Ears. They are made in China and are $2.95 each. The amplifier has a pair of ear pieces with a plug into a 2 inch by 1 inch plastic device that comes with two spare batteries. It actually works, though because they are cheaply made, the volume control breaks. Battery replacement is problematic as well because the plastic case just snaps together. It is easy to break it. That’s why you buy those 10 at a time for a discount. Because they come in bright colored plastic, they really don’t look too businesslike.
A step above is a device advertised on television that is intended for those who are losing ability to hear the television or who have to turn it up so loud that others complain. The device is called “Listen Up,” powered by AAA battery. It is a smart design 3 inches by 1 ½ inches with a blue light to indicate when it is turned on. The device comes with “standard” ear pieces, though they must be seated perfectly before one can hear well. They definitely work as advertised, though the ear piece needs improving. Listen Up is $10.
I saw another device advertised at a web address featuring many other devices and brands. It is 1 inch by 1 ½ inch and is shiny black with silver parts. It looks sharp. It has one ear piece and it fits very well into the ear. It is powered by AAA battery though the hearing ear plug has a very small and unique plug. It is miniature and durability is an issue. The plug in interferes with the on and off switch as well. At $20 you are paying for a smart design and some spare ear plugs. It comes in a handsome box like for jewelry. Made in Taiwan.
The amplification device that works best comes from Sears. It is about twice the size of a cell phone. It is a handsome design and appears rugged. It has a single strand with two ear phones and the amplification control is built into the ear cable for convenience. It can attach to your belt. It also has a full headset. The cost is $60 and it is excellent for group conversation at a table or in a conference room.
If my hearing was still in range for hearing aids, I would actually consider using one of the amplification devices before I would pay thousands of dollars for hearing aids. If you have trouble hearing, there is no sense in making it a secret.
For me, the cochlear implant is the way to go, and that requires considerable effort to learn how to hear, and to speak again.
Most Recommended Comment
Saskatoon, Saskatoon, Canada