How to Choose Between the Different Levels of Technology | The Flex Audiology Show #4

09/06/2022 | Flex Audiology Show, Patient Resources, Technology

Hi everyone, and welcome to an episode of the Flex Audiology Show, where today we are going to discuss how to pick between the different levels of technology.

So, let’s jump right in!

When manufacturers release a new product, they release them in three different tier levels. If you visit this page, you will see on the pricing plan that we’ve broken it down into:

  • Smart
  • Signature
  • Premium

When I’ve had a hearing aid consultation with someone, the biggest question is, “How do I pick the difference between the levels, and which one is best for me?

I’m going to break it down into three different components.

The Three Components of Technology Levels

#1 – Comfort

The first one is just simply the comfort level. When I put somebody in a Smart, Signature, or Premium, they will notice that the sound quality that comes through on a Premium is just a lot quieter to them and they’ll remark on it.

“Wow. I don’t hear your noise as much.”

“I don’t hear the computer noise.”

 “Everything’s just easier.”

These are the most common things that are said, and it relates to a concept called the acceptable noise level. An acceptable noise level is how well you tolerate noise. If your tolerance is very low, then you need a much better hearing aid.

In this case, I will advise my patients to consider the Premium or Signature plan. That way, the hearing aid is a lot quieter, and the noise levels are a lot more acceptable to the patient.

#2 – Environment

How difficult are the environments that you go into and how often do you go into them?

If you were somebody that is often in complex listening environments, you want a hearing aid that’s going to accommodate those different scenarios and make the adjustment so that you’re not constantly having to fiddle with the hearing aids themselves.

I would always say for my grandmother, whom I consider to be quiet, that premium technology is best for her. The noise was our family, but I still put her on premium devices now because her issue was when she was in noise.

I wanted a system that was going to do the best for her and be the most comfortable for her, which happened to be only three to four times a month.

So, even though she wouldn’t have fallen into that active tier level, I still put her in premium.

I wanted her to do the best that she possibly could do when she was in that more complex listening environment.

Hearing Assessment

#3 – Real Ear Measurements

Lastly, once we have the hearing test results, you get a prescription and we fit you to the prescription using real ear measurements or live speech mapping.

If you think about your car stereo system that has a few adjustments – with treble and base as two of the main adjustments.

The same goes for hearing technology.

As you go from Smart to Signature to Premium, this allows me more access to those adjustments, which means I can more precisely tune in the hearing aid to your prescription, meaning you will hear better.

Sounds will be cleaner and clearer, and the noise reduction features will work within those bands. Overall, it’s a system that is going to work better for you in a wide variety of situations.

They are the main difference in hearing aid technology levels. I would really encourage people to get the best system that will work within their budget because there’s just so much more that we can do for you with this approach.

If you’re that person that noise really doesn’t bother you at all – depending on the configuration of your hearing loss – you might do perfectly well with a Smart level. If we can’t quite do a Smart level, we do have a Hearables and an Essential package which you can learn more about here.

Ready to Discover the Right Solution for You?

When you visit us, our job is to take your lifestyle, your hearing loss, and your personal needs into account. We’re here to help pair you with the perfect hearing aid.

To schedule a comprehensive hearing assessment to find out which hearing technology level is right for you, request your appointment here.

I look forward to helping you with better hearing!

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Dr. Person Au.D, CCC-A

Dr. Person has been a private practice owner since 2005. She currently specializes in hearing aids, tinnitus management and vestibular diagnostics, while operating in an unbundled service delivery model. Dr. Person is the host of The Unbundled Audiologist podcast. She serves as the incoming VP of Audiology for ISHA for a three year term. Her greatest accomplishment is creating a life where she can serve others while still spending quality time with her husband and two small children.