Q. My hearing aids are about 5 years old. When I got them, hearing phone calls and the TV was fairly good. Over the past year or two that has become much worse. Do new hearing aids work better with TV and phones?
A. Yes. Hearing aid companies usually introduce new hearing aids for three main reasons. First, they are much better at picking up more subtle parts of speech, which provides you with more clarity. Second, they have more accessory features like TV and smart phone reception. And third, they work a little better in noisy environments.
For TV and smart phones, most newer hearing aids are able to pull in those audio signals directly into the hearing aids. In these situations, think of the hearing aids like customized headphones that also correct for your hearing loss. Talk with your hearing center about the accessories and features available with new hearing aids.
You might be interested to learn new hearing aids can link to Apple and PC computers, many tablets, stereos, and other audio devices. You might need some small connectivity devices for some of these connections to work. You can also get an extra microphone device that sends sounds directly to your hearing aids. Ask your hearing center.
Saleem Assaf (BA – Rice, MBA – UT) is a native Dallas, Texan and a recipient of KVUE’s 2020 award for 5 Who Care and the Texas Hearing Aid Association’s 2018 Dispenser of the Year award. Outside his practice, Saleem volunteers for hearing healthcare in Austin and abroad. Since 2008, he has provided $178,000 in hearing aids to students at the Texas School for the Deaf.