Abusive listening to high volumes, MP3 players … Hearing impairment affects more and more people, not just seniors. Faced with this problem, hearing aid amplifiers are more and more sophisticated. But popular ideas still circulate about them. Learn to distinguish true from false.
More than 80 million Europeans suffer from hearing problems. The majority of them do not wear hearing aids, thus decreasing their quality of life. Apparatus can sometimes scare and be a source of discrimination. But current techniques can help the hearing impaired much more discreetly than before.
More and more cases of hearing loss
More and more people are suffering from hearing problems: 6 million are concerned, and not only the elderly. One in 10 people suffers from hearing loss and half of them have fewer hearing impairments. 55 years old. The increase in noise exposure and the prolonged use of excessive volumes of mp3 players or other music players endanger the hearing of the youngest. The phenomenon is such that we speak of epidemic in France, but also in Italy, Canada and New Zealand.
And hearing loss affects all aspects of life: social, family, professional … According to a 2008 Hear-it survey, 6 in 10 of hearing impaired people admit that hearing loss has a negative effect on their relationship and 3 out of 4 admit to changing behavior.
But when diagnosed early enough, the hearing disorder can be effectively and quietly managed by hearing aids. The apparatus allows to find a normal life and to forget the handicap to the relatives. Hearing aids take advantage of new technologies, and are now more discreet, more aesthetic and more effective. However, 3 out of 4 people with hearing loss wait more than a year before taking treatment. Nearly 4 in 10 people with hearing loss take more than five years to get used to it.
Today’s hearing aids
There are many people who do not dare to pass the switchboard yet. At the root of this attitude, we find a lot of prejudices concerning hearing aids. Discover the truth about these new devices.
- There is only one type of hearing aid: FALSE. There are several types of devices that are pre-programmed and that need to be adjusted according to the progression of hearing loss. The hearing care professional can adapt the program to meet everyday environmental needs. In addition, there are now also analog devices, digital that allow better transmission of sounds, sometimes a better distinction between the ambient noise and the sound of the person with whom you speak, etc. ;
- The hearing aids are all external: FALSE. For most people, hearing aids are all about behind the ear (which are more and more discreet and mostly have nothing to do with the flesh-colored plastic devices of our elders). There are other forms: the intra-duct, the mini intra-duct and intra-conque.
- The miniaturized hearing aids allow to hear better: FALSE. With identical technical characteristics, miniaturized prostheses are not more effective than the others, but offer an optimal discretion. Characteristics
- Hearing aids are not reimbursed: FALSE.To be covered by the Social Security, the equipment must be prescribed by a doctor and must appear on the LPP (list of products and services reimbursable by social security). For under 20s, the reimbursement is 65% of the amount of the prosthesis on the BVG, from 900 to 1 400 euros. For hearing-impaired people over the age of 20, the hearing aid is reimbursed at 65%, based on a flat rate of € 199.71, a reimbursement of € 129.80. The reimbursement remains minimal and few mutuals support the rest of the amount. However, the control and adjustment visits to the audiologist are free.
- A hearing aid does not change: FALSE. The hearing aid has a lifespan of 4 to 5 years in general, but everything depends on its maintenance.
- Only the hearing care professional can adjust the device: FALSE. Initially, indeed, only the hearing care professional can make the initial adjustment. Then, for digital equipment, the settings are done automatically.
- You can not swim with hearing aids: FALSE. Some equipment, intended primarily for children is waterproof, however it is recommended to remove before bathing and avoid contact with water as much as possible.
- You always hear a breath when wearing your hearing aid: TRUE / FALSE. Hearing impaired hearing still hear a breath or noise, but these disadvantages are mitigated or even eliminated with digital.
Hearing impairment: other high-tech products
A new generation of hearing aids has just been introduced: these are devices that use wireless technologies to connect to television, landline or mobile phone, mp3 player, GPS … The prostheses are configured once with the chosen device. Once this step is completed, the hearing impaired person can answer the phone, watch television or listen to music directly in his hearing aids. A remote control allows him to change channels, songs, increase or decrease the volume, or even answer the phone.
These new hearing aids use Bluetooth to connect to all devices that punctuate our daily lives. The remote is very discreet, no bigger than an mp3 player and can be worn around the neck, under clothing. For optimal use, the remote control must be within one meter of the prostheses. Thus, this new generation of hearing aids is easily integrated into everyday life and in particular that of active people.
In addition, this range of products uses a discreet earloop, much smaller than these predecessors: some do not exceed 3 cm. They come in different colors, from the most classic and discreet, to heavier shades, for those who no longer consider their hearing loss as a handicap.