Hearing aids are used to improve the hearing of individuals that have hearing loss resulting from damage to the small sensory cells in the inner ear, sensorineural hearing loss. A hearing aid magnifies sound vibrations entering the ear. Surviving hair cells detect vibrations and convert them into neural signals that are passed along to the brain. The greater the damage to a person’s hair cells, the more severe the hearing loss, and the greater the hearing aid amplification needed to make up the difference.
There are practical limitations in the amount of amplification a hearing aid can provide, for some people hearing aids may be insufficient. In these instances, they may be a candidate for a cochlear implant.
The NHS provides lots of different types of hearing aids. All hearing aids have the same inherent features and the same three basic parts: a microphone, amplifier and speaker. The right hearing aid for an individual will depend on their hearing loss, their ear’s anatomy and their lifestyle. Of equal importance, is the way that the hearing aid is set up and programmed; your Audiologist’s knowledge is invaluable.
Read our short guide for all things hearing, including communication tips, audiogram information, cleaning guides, how to wear hearing aids.Download our Guide to Hearing