5 Best Hearing Aids for Mild to Moderate Hearing LossPublished On
Hearing loss can have a heavy impact on our everyday lifestyle, as we are incredibly reliant on our hearing ability to get on with our day-to-day lives. Anyone can suffer from hearing loss problems at any point in their life due to various reasons- and whenever that happens, they get exposed to numerous difficulties. Most of the hearing loss types are permanent as the hearing cells in the inner ear get damaged. Also, a person can fall victim to hearing loss of various degrees, such as mild, moderate, moderate to severe, severe, and profound hearing loss.
If someone suffers from even a mild or moderate degree of hearing loss, they’ll find it challenging to carry on everyday conversations, especially with background noises. So, they face trouble talking to other people in crowded places such as social gatherings, restaurants, etc. The social life of a person becomes completely miserable, and they tend to isolate themselves from everyone. This isolation can lead to various mental health problems like depression, anxiety, etc. So, it is a must to take care of your mild to moderate hearing loss problems. And the best way to do that is using hearing aids.
There are many good-quality hearing aids in the market that will help you listen better and take care of your hearing health so that your mild or moderate hearing loss doesn’t further and get to a severe or profound degree. But you need to be careful in choosing one, as not all hearing aids specifically deal with mild or moderate hearing loss. This article will help you know more about mild and moderate hearing loss, what to do if you face that, and which hearing aids can help you listen better if you suffer from these problems. Oticon Opn, Phonak Audeo Marvel, Nano X2R, Widex Beyond, ReSound LiNX 3D, etc., are some of the hearing aids that can be of great help regarding mild to moderate hearing loss. Stay with us to know more about them.
What is Mild and Moderate Hearing Loss?
A person can go through different degrees of hearing loss, depending on the severity and intensity of their hearing loss problem. Hearing loss problems can range from mild to a profound degree, and each degree has its sound level range. These levels of hearing loss are mild hearing loss, moderate hearing loss, moderate to severe hearing loss, severe hearing loss, and profound hearing loss. What degree of hearing loss a person is facing can be found out through an audiogram.
When an adult cannot hear quieter sounds than 25 dB, they have mild hearing loss. The range is 15 dB for children. People with mild hearing loss, they cannot hear sounds like dripping water, feet shuffling on carpets, leaves rustling, birds chirping, and even whispering conversations. Even though most people tend to struggle hearing high-pitched sounds, you might work to hear low-pitched ones too. People with mild hearing loss can carry on one-to-one conversations in quiet places, but find it challenging to do so when there’s any background noise involved. The same goes for group conversations during social gatherings.
And when a person faces difficulties hearing sounds from 40-55 dB, you can call it a moderate hearing loss. Some people put moderate and moderate to severe hearing loss in the same bracket and called it the moderate hearing loss threshold, ranging from 40 dB to 69 dB. When a person has moderate hearing loss, their situation worsens from mild hearing loss, and they face difficulties in carrying on one-to-one conversations, even if they are in quiet places. And conversations in crowded areas or group conversations become almost impossible.
How to Detect Hearing Loss Degree?
At this point, you might want to know how you can detect what degree of hearing loss someone is facing. You’ll have to sit down with a professional or audiologist to take different tests and screenings, and in this specific case, the evaluation is known as an audiogram. An audiogram shows the softest sounds you could hear during the test on a graph.
To find out the degree of hearing loss, it is needed to determine the hearing thresholds of a person. The hearing threshold means the lowest level sound they can listen to 50% of the time or more. And you already know what the hearing thresholds are for mild and moderate hearing loss. The threshold for severe hearing loss is 70-90 dB, and which is profound hearing loss.
In this test, the audiologist will make you wear earphones and direct sounds into one ear at a time. Sounds of various tones and ranges will be presented to you, and you’ll have to signal if you hear any sound. A particular tone is presented at different volumes, so it can be determined at which point you can no longer detect the sound in the case of that tone. Various tones and dB levels are used to determine the hearing loss degree for each ear.
To understand audiograms easily, here is a picture of an audiogram test where the blue X represent the hearing thresholds for the left ear, and red circles represent thresholds for the right ear. In the audiogram above, the person has normal hearing in both ears in terms of low frequency. But in terms of high frequency, they have severe hearing loss.
Treatment Options for Mild to Moderate Hearing Loss
When a person gets diagnosed with mild to moderate hearing loss, they get presented with treatment options. However, most hearing losses are permanent types of hearing loss, as they get caused due to damages in the hearing cells of the inner ear. You can’t cure these hearing loss problems, and most mild to moderate hearing loss problems fall into that category. Instead, you can go for measures to help you listen better and take care of your hearing health so that your condition doesn’t further deteriorate. Such treatment measures are-
Hearing aids are the most effective and popular treatment method for permanent hearing loss. Hearing aids work particularly well for mild to moderate hearing loss, as they can amplify sounds to a person’s specific needs. The sound levels a person can’t hear are amplified with the help of hearing aids so that the user can listen properly. They can be adjusted to various sound environments to hear in different environments and communicate adequately with others. Also, using hearing aids ensure that the current condition of a person won’t worsen. If any measure isn’t taken, the situation can’t deteriorate.
Cochlear implants are for more severe hearing loss problems. When hearing aids can’t be of any more help, one can resort to these. Cochlear implants don’t amplify sounds; instead, they bypass the damaged parts of the inner ear and stimulate the hearing nerves. These have to be implanted through surgery.
You can treat some forms of hearing loss through surgery, such as abnormalities of hearing bones or the eardrum. Also, infections that cause temporary hearing loss can be treated with surgery. Permanent ones can’t be treated with surgeries.
Removing Ear Wax Blockage
Ear wax can block the hearing path and cause temporary hearing loss. You can get rid of that temporary hearing loss by removing the ear wax, and an audiologist can help you with that.
You can go through these measures in terms of both permanent and temporary hearing loss problems. An audiologist will help you to figure out which one to go for.
How Do Hearing Aids Work to Help with Mild to Moderate Hearing Loss?
It has already been mentioned that hearing aids are the most effective treatment method for mild to moderate hearing loss. As these hearing loss types are permanent due to the damage in the hearing cells, you can’t properly cure them. Instead, you’ll have to focus on listening better and keep your hearing health safe from further deteriorating. If you don’t go for hearing aids to listen better, it can harm your physical and mental health.
Hearing aids will amplify sounds for you, and the still-functioning hearing cells will detect the amplified sounds and send signals to your brain. Using a hearing aid doesn’t only improve the hearing of a patient. It also helps the quality of their life. While using hearing aids, you won’t have to put too much effort into hearing sounds, and it will help reduce your fatigue and improve your mood significantly. According to many studies, untreated hearing loss, can lead to various other problems, and even cognitive decline no matter how mild it is.
Suppose you have trouble listening due to mild to moderate hearing loss, and face difficulties in distinguishing between sounds and voices while communicating with others. In that case, you must start using hearing aids soon after you see an audiologist. Hearing aids will help you distinguish between various sounds and make it easier for you to concentrate on conversations by amplifying the sounds and adjusting the settings based on your surrounding environment. You’ll be able to different environments and communication make group conversations and join social gatherings comfortably. But if you keep your hearing loss untreated, you might find yourself in isolation soon due to all the fatigue and anxiety.
And all these can lead to depression and other mental health problems. Also, not using hearing aids can make your mild to moderate hearing loss turn into a more severe one with time. So, to listen better and have a relaxed and comfortable life, you’ll need to resort to using hearing aids.
Different Types of Hearing Aids
There are different types of hearing aids, and you can choose any type depending on your preference. But some types are more suitable than others for mild to moderate hearing loss. Let’s have a look at different types of hearing aids.
These hearing aids are molded to fit inside the ear canal. They are the least visible type and use tiny batteries. They are good at not picking up wind noise, but they can be challenging to handle, and primarily they don’t provide extra features like volume control. However, they are suitable for mild to moderate hearing loss.
ITC hearing aids fit in the ear canal partly, and they are custom-molded. They are less visible than many other types, but they can be challenging to adjust. They provide more features than CIC ones, and they also are great for mild to moderate hearing loss.
In The Ear
ITE hearing aids have two custom-made styles, one of which fills only the lower part of the bowl-shaped area of the outer ear, and the other fills most of it. They provide more features than the previous two and use larger batteries to provide longer battery life. They are more visible and easier to handle. Most importantly, they are beneficial for mild to moderate hearing loss.
Behind The Ear
BTE hearing aids are the largest among others, but they provide more amplification than others, so these work well for all types of hearing loss. These aids hook over the top of the ear and rest behind it. The hearing aid is connected with an earmold that fits in the ear canal through a tube. These feature directional microphones and rechargeable batteries.
RIC or RITE hearing aids are similar to the BTE ones and provide almost the same features, but less visible.
These hearing aids are variations of BTE and RIC hearing aids, and they keep the ear canal open. They let low-frequency sounds enter naturally in the ear and amplify the high-frequency ones. They are great for high-frequency hearing loss. They are visible and difficult to insert into the ear.
Best Hearing Aids for Mild to Moderate Hearing Loss
Finally, we have come to the list of best hearing aids you can find in the market to help you ideally with your mild to moderate hearing loss. Let’s have a look at the list so that you can choose one from the list conveniently.
The Oticon Opn features the BrainHearing and Velox chip of Oticon; as a result, it sounds very natural. With this hearing aid, a person can properly listen to all the speech sounds around them to seamlessly communicate with people in crowded places. It features a rechargeable battery or a disposable one-time 312-zinc battery based on your choice. The dual wireless system of this hearing aid helps a lot to understand speeches better in noise. You can connect it to the internet directly. It is excellent for mild to moderate hearing loss.
- Natural Sound
- Fast Processing Speed due to the Velox Chip
- BrainHearing Technology
- Dual Wireless System
- Might Feel Uncomfortable At First
Phonak Audeo Marvel
These hearing aids are available in 4 performance levels. You will listen to live conversations and even clearly listen to calls and audio from multiple sources due to its clear and rich sound quality. You’ll be connecting this hearing aid wirelessly to all the devices that have Bluetooth connectivity. This hearing aid features “AutoSense OS 3.0” which helps it process sounds better. You can either go for a rechargeable battery or a disposable one. This RIC hearing aid is great for mild to moderate hearing loss.
- Rich and Clear Sound Quality
- Telecoil Available
- FM Compatibility
- Built-In Roger Compatibility
- Standard Phone Compatibility
- Wireless Phone Compatibility
- The Receiver Can Feel a Bit Uncomfortable
This hearing aid provides great sound environment settings with the cutting-edge technology it features. So, it will help you adjust its settings based on your surrounding environment. Most importantly, it provides excellent rechargeable options, and its adaptive technology will help you listen to sounds clearly in demanding sound environments. The Nano X2R features background noise reduction and digital sound processing, making it an excellent choice for mild to moderate hearing loss.
- Digital Sound Processing
- Sound Environment Settings
- Background Noise Reduction\
- Adaptive Technology
- Feedback Cancellation
- Fits Ear Canals Perfectly
- Doesn’t Have Wireless App Control
Widex Beyond hearing aids will help you enjoy life to the fullest with their highly advanced sound quality. It will optimize sound based on your surrounding environment, so you’ll be able to listen to sounds properly in the toughest of sound environments. Moreover, these hearing aids feature SMARTWIND Manager, which helps to significantly reduce the annoyance caused by wind while listening and understand speeches clearly. They provide great intelligent technologies to connect smoothly with other devices. This hearing aid also features standard phone compatibility. This RIC hearing aid can be a great option to deal with mild to moderate hearing loss.
- Advanced Sound Quality
- Excellent Sound Optimization based on Surroundings
- SMARTWIND Manager
- Telecoil Available
- FM Compatibility
- Wireless Compatibility
- Standard Phone Compatibility
- Doesn’t Have Proper Rechargeable Options
ReSound LiNX 3D
The ReSound LiNX 3D features one of the most advanced hearing aid technologies out there. This intelligent hearing aid comes with Surround Sound Technology. This hearing aid can help you understand speeches more clearly by increasing your hearing ability with great amplification technology. You can use the ReSound app to adjust the settings of this hearing aid easily, This hearing aid does a great job of helping you differentiate between different sounds in different environments. It comes in rechargeable options. You can get this hearing aid in different styles, and it can be of great help for mild to moderate hearing loss. This hearing aid also features FM compatibility, Wireless compatibility, etc., among other things.
- Surround Sound Technology
- Advanced Amplification Technology
- Available in Different Styles
- FM Compatibility
- Standard Phone Compatibility
- Wireless Compatibility
- App Support
- You Might Feel Disturbing Sensations in the Ears At First
Things to Look for While Buying Hearing Aids
You might be getting confused about how to choose a hearing aid for mild to moderate hearing loss? These are a few things you can consider before getting hearing aids. There are:
Get a Checkup from An Audiologist: See an audiologist to check your hearing, and understand what type of hearing loss you have, if you have any. The audiologist will prescribe you the perfect type of hearing aid you need and help you adjust the device based on your needs.
Ask for Trial Use: You should ask for a trial before finally getting the hearing aid, as hearing aids need some getting used to. After a trial, you’ll be able to know if a hearing aid is suitable for you.
Check Quality: Try to get the best hearing aids from renowned brands so that you get your hands on high-quality hearing aids. Make sure to check the quality beforehand.
Evaluate Specific Need: Ensure that your hearing aids provide all the features you prefer so that the hearing aids can fulfill your specific needs.
Future usability: Check if your chosen hearing aids have the function of increasing the power so that you can be ready if your hearing capability worsens in the future. Also, make sure to check its expected lifetime. They should last around five years.
Query on Warranty: Make sure that your chosen hearing aids include a decent warranty, which will cover the labor and parts for a decent period.
Pricing to Quality: Make sure that you are getting proper value for your money. If you are spending a lot, make sure that the hearing aids have all the features it claims to provide.
After-Sale Service: Check if the brand provides proper after-sale service, such as healp you with adjustments and repairs.
No matter how mild your hearing loss is, it is imperative to take care of it as soon as possible. Otherwise, your hearing ability and hearing health can deteriorate even further. So, make sure to get appropriate hearing aids that will help you listen better and get on with your everyday life conveniently. This list of best hearing aids for mild to moderate hearing loss will help you choose the perfect one for you.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q: Do you need hearing aids for slight hearing loss?
Ans: people with slight hearing loss can benefit from wearing a hearing aid because hearing aids amplify the sound vibrations. The functioning hair cells will detect these more significant vibrations, passing them as neural signals to the brain.