Do you wear hearing aid devices? If you answered “yes,” you’re probably eager to maximize your hearing ability. You have probably worked with your hearing healthcare specialist to try a range of hearing aid brands. They’ve likely also helped you determine the features and functionality that will most help your hearing.
Aside from trying different brands and features, another way to maximize your hearing is to use two hearing aids.
Are Two Hearing Aids Better Than One?
Let’s imagine for a moment that your ears are a muscle. Just like any other muscle, keeping your ears in top condition requires exercise.
(Sidenote - There are muscles within your ears. However, as a whole your ears are not a muscle, they are actually an organ.)
Hearing loss can affect your ears differently. If you have a hearing impairment, you may have chosen to only wear a hearing aid device in one ear. While this is going to help one ear, it can actually hinder your hearing ability.
To help explain why this is, let’s first explore how our hearing works. Normally, we will have ‘binaural hearing.’ This means that both ears are involved in your ability to hear. Some of the benefits of using both ears to hear include:
- Improved ability to locate the source of a sound
- Better perception of speech
- Improved sound processing
- Easier to hear
Binaural hearing is the natural state of your hearing. Your brain can more effectively process sounds when both ears are involved. Click here to read more about binaural hearing.
Now, back to hearing aids. The purpose of a hearing aid device is to amplify sounds. This provides auditory stimulation, and helps enhance your overall hearing ability. You may notice that your hearing loss is worse in one ear than the other. You may even be tempted to only wear one hearing aid.
Even if you feel that your hearing in one ear is fine, you may find voices in loud areas are a little unclear. Equally, the sounds from the television may not be as crisp. Known as ‘auditory deprivation’, this happens to many of us as we age.
Using two hearing aids helps to create surround sound amplification. This helps to stimulate our natural state of hearing: binaural hearing. Wearing two hearing aid devices will help you perceive sounds with greater intensity. It can help your ability to distinguish between different frequencies. It can also enhance your ability to clearly hear speech, even when in a noisy environment.
The benefits to using two hearing aid devices extend beyond this. Using two devices means there is less load on any one single device. This means you won’t need to have them turned up as high, as both devices will be amplifying sound around you. Two devices can also help reduce symptoms of tinnitus. Unfortunately, only using one device is unlikely to offer this benefit.
Have a Question? Need Help? Contact Us Today!
If you have a hearing impairment in one ear, we truly do recommend wearing two hearing aids. If you’d like to discuss this further, or explore hearing aids that could be an option for you, the hearing specialists at HearingLife (formerly Family Audiology) would be happy to help. Please get in touch via our website by clicking here. We’ll be in touch when we can invite you in for an appointment.