By: Katie Gibas
Twenty percent of adults in the U.S. have hearing loss, but that percentage increases to 30 percent in people over the age of 60.
"We're definitely seeing an uptick in the number of patients seeking audiology care. It's a combination of an aging population and it's also a function of noise exposure. It's a noisier world we live in," said Gebbie Hearing Clinic Director Joseph Pellegrino.
Experts say detecting hearing loss and getting a hearing aid early is crucial to preserve cognitive function.
But there are a lot of different hearing aid options that can make choosing one difficult.
Some of those are hearing aids that are completely in the ear canal, partially in the ear canal, in the outer ear, and behind the ear.
"As a rule of thumb, the smaller a hearing aid gets, the less powerful it is. Most of our patients at the Gebbie Clinic find that the small behind the ear instrument is the best option. There's something now called a receiver in the canal hearing aid. The microphone and processing portion of the hearing aid is tucked behind the ear. It's quite small. There's a thin wire that comes over the ear and the receiver is tucked in the ear," said Pellegrino.
Now that we've discussed some of the different options for hearing aids, let's talk about how to pay for them. At this time, Medicare does not cover hearing aids.