How To Avoid Four Hearing Aid Rip-offs. To some degree, all of us are attracted by low price because we want to work within our budgets. But some hearing aids sellers use price as the bait for their false and misleading advertising. They offer a very cheap introductory price in the newspaper on a hearing aid, then, once they've fitted you with a hearing aid, you walk around the store and recognize it really does sound good - you are now emotionally involved. Then, sensing the moment, they pressure you into buying the top and newest hearing aid model. It’s as if you were looking for economy car at affordable price and found that the dealer was trying to sell you the newest model - right of factory floor.
RIP-OFF #2: UNSUPPORTED CLAIMS
“THIS HEARING AID IS THE BEST or INVISIBLE HEARING AID.” You’ll read this in almost every ad. You’ll hear this from virtually every hearing aid seller. Just Remember this: The hearing aid that’s best for you is the hearing aid that achieves your goal: to hear better - within your BUDGET. If you want a hearing aid that connects to an iphone, then your are going to pay a pretty penny for that. First identify your objectives. Lets say your need to get to Los Angeles to Dallas. you can take First Class American Airlines, or Southwest Airlines in seat 23C. Both are going to get you there. (I think SW has a better on time record than AA) One is going to cost you 3 times the other. So before you choose a hearing aid, identify your objectives. Then select the hearing aid that best reaches those objectives. And "Invisible" really - not unless it has a Harry Potter Cloak of Invisibility.
RIP-OFF #3: BUYING A HEARING WITH MORE THAN 8 CHANNELS
Some new hearing aids can come with 24 channels or more… and have a price tag of $2000 to $3000 per aid. One might assume that more channels or bands will equate to better performance or more benefit. But is that actually true? Starkey, a hear aid manufacturer, did a study involving 1,156 audiograms (study was published in audiologyonline.com). Their goal was to determine how many independent channels were needed to maximize speech audibility - how clear you hear words. Their initial assumption was that a well-designed hearing aid can and should maximize sound quality and speech understanding - – and this was measured by how sharp or clear words sounded to a hearing aid wearer - which is called the Articulation Index or "AI". The results of the study may surprise you. Starkey found that the most significant improvement occurred within the first four channels. In other words, the greatest improvements were seen in people moving from one channel to two, two channels to three, or three channels to four. Some improvements were also seen moving from five to six channels, but it was such a small improvement that is was considered to be statistically insignificant. Beyond six channels they were unable to show any improvement in how clear the words word at all.
This video below will explain what bands/channels are and how many channels you are actually paying for...
So if 95% of a person’s hearing losses can be handled by a hearing aid with 4 to 6 channels, and there is no additional benefit from more channels, why spend more?