Given the cost of quality hearing aids, lots of people naturally wonder whether they need two hearing aids, or if they could make do with only one. In the majority of situations, the advantages of using two hearing aids exceed that additional expense, but there are particular situations where this is not the case.
For starters, if your hearing is fully normal in one ear, you clearly don’t need a second hearing aid for that ear. Also, if you have completely lost your hearing in one ear, and are experiencing total deafness in it, wearing a hearing aid in that ear is not going to be effective. People that have chronic ear infections may opt for a single hearing aid to avoid aggravating the recurring infection. Or, if you have a specific form of hearing loss where the speech is heard garbled, a hearing aid in that ear may make your comprehension worse by amplifying the garbled speech. Outside of these four situations, the arguments for using two hearing aids are fairly strong and backed up by numerous consumer satisfaction surveys among hearing aid users. You will hear a more realistic sound panorama while wearing two hearing aids, and you will also be more able to pinpoint the location of the sounds that you hear. Research studies have demonstrated that two hearing aids also improve your ability to understand speech – especially in noisy environments. Critically important in the decision of purchasing one or two hearing aids is the fact that hearing involves the ear and the brain. When you wear two hearing aids, you continue to stimulate and use both ears. Wearing only one can cause the limited hearing in the other ear to deteriorate further from lack of use. For tinnitus sufferers, two hearing aids are almost always the wisest choice because the hearing aid is used to mask the ringing or buzzing sounds associated with tinnitus. Without the second hearing aid, these sounds continue in the other ear. Not surprisingly, consumer research studies have shown that wearing two hearing aids is less mentally tiring than wearing one.
All told, the case for wearing two hearing aids is more persuasive than the case for wearing only one. For many people making this decision, they need to experience the difference between one and two hearing aids first hand. You can test out the difference by scheduling an appointment to come see us. Then decide for yourself which provides you with the better hearing experience. We think you’ll decide that two is better than one.