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Decent Priced Hearing Aid?
Old 05-06-2010, 05:06 PM   #1
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Decent Priced Hearing Aid?

My 83 year old mother`s hearing is pretty bad.Does anyone know of a decent priced hearing aid that works reasonably well?

Thanks
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Old 05-06-2010, 06:58 PM   #2
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Robjr100,

Hearing is such a complicated issue, and you've given us zero data. Most people have some hearing loss as they age, but "83 years old" doesn't always mean "pretty bad hearing." Has your Mom been to the audiologist to have her hearing levels measured, and get a diagnosis of the cause and type of hearing loss? The audiologist can recommend appropriate hearing aids, at different price levels, and Medicare or other insurance may pick up some of the cost.

Sorry I can't be more specific, but others on the forum may be able to help, if you tell them a bit more. I do think the audiologist needs to be your Mom's first stop, though.

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You make it sound so complicated
Old 05-06-2010, 07:39 PM   #3
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You make it sound so complicated

She can hear fine when the TV is up real loud.So I have to think some amplification might do the do the trick.Pretty simple.

I see some of these hearing aids at thousands of dollars which seems pretty absurd.
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Old 05-06-2010, 07:49 PM   #4
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She needs to see her PCP...perhaps he/she can check her ears to see if they need to been cleaned. If they do and the PCP can't do it properly, she needs to go to an ENT for an examination, cleaning and tests if necessary.

I just went through this type of thing a little over a month ago.
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Old 05-07-2010, 12:14 AM   #5
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hmmm i just spent weekend w/mom who was (imo) hoodwinked for qty 1 $3k hearing aid. I just bought 3 pairs of off the shelf, differing vendor, hearing aids for under $100 total as an experiment to see if any meet her needs.
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Old 05-07-2010, 12:47 AM   #6
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hmmm i just spent weekend w/mom who was (imo) hoodwinked for qty 1 $3k hearing aid. I just bought 3 pairs of off the shelf, differing vendor, hearing aids for under $100 total as an experiment to see if any meet her needs.
Please post how these work out.
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Old 05-07-2010, 01:50 AM   #7
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Second hand hearing aid might be an option. The thing that goes into the ear can be renewed and all the rest can be cleaned professionally.
Some people find it gross - but why if it is "refurbished" ?
(I have heard that a lot of the hearing aids go back to the vendor if a user dies and not all of them go to charity or third world countries...)
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Old 05-07-2010, 09:59 AM   #8
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Sometimes amplification alone is a reasonable and cost-effective strategy. Other times it isn't. Often it's as simple as removing wax from deep in the ear canal. Frequently the hearing loss is poor discrimination due to selective loss in the high frequencies only.

I'd get an audiologic evaluation. Select an audiologist and ENT doc who are not in the business of selling hearing aids. If the only solutions are too expensive, ask whether trying amplification alone is worth it.

Like many of my male friends I have a slight high frequency hearing loss - sounds like V, S, F, th, and others blend into background noise and louder is worse -- in fact it's better with ear plugs. So I'd get tested if it were bad enough to pursue.
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As if you didn't know..If the above message contains medical content, it's NOT intended as advice, and may not be accurate, applicable or sufficient. Don't rely on it for any purpose. Consult your own doctor for all medical advice.
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Old 05-07-2010, 10:59 AM   #9
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Agree to start with an amplifier thingie if it's mostly to hear the TV without it being on full blast.

Just like nonprescription reading glasses from the drugstore, a cheapo amplifier might be fine. I have to admit I don't understand why prescription hearing aids cost so much when all other technology falls in price.
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Old 05-07-2010, 07:00 PM   #10
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Like many of my male friends I have a slight high frequency hearing loss - sounds like V, S, F, th, and others blend into background noise and louder is worse -- in fact it's better with ear plugs. So I'd get tested if it were bad enough to pursue.

Is that the selective hearing loss that guys get from ignoring their wives for years especially if they are talking during football season ?
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Old 05-08-2010, 12:44 AM   #11
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See if you have a university nearby that has a speech and hearing clinic. They will do an audiological exam for a small fee (it will be done by a graduate student that needs a certain amount of clinical hours of experience as part of their degree but supervised by a licensed audiologist). They can order hearing aids for you at cost.
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Old 05-24-2010, 11:16 PM   #12
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ok - my hong kong shipment came in...

Now to have mom try them out.....




So since i have no experience... What are valued criteria?

- Sound amplification
- Sound tone
- Size
- Comfort
- Battery life
- etc
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Old 05-25-2010, 12:46 AM   #13
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I'd check out Costco. They give free hearing tests. They charge about half the ridiculously high regular prices of other places. But I will say I've had bad luck with the audiologists there; One lied to me about the results of my test in order to encourage me to get a hearing aid that I didn't need.
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Old 10-16-2010, 07:43 PM   #14
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As a follow up... The $15 versions Zhong De brand were moms favorites and today i had a chance to play with all 3 myself. They all worked - but its subjective in difference. All were $10 to $15 per piece. The lower 2 cost ones seemed to have a discerable 60hz hum while the highest price $15 one was fine.

Im not familiar with features but if not seated in the ear all can feedback if volume is turned up. So if you back down volume you may also then trigger feedback as you try to put it in your ear. I guess you keep it off or volume down until inserted. Unsure if thats a normal issue.

I guess if im paying $100's i expect that to be auto prevented.




Quote:
Originally Posted by nphx View Post
ok - my hong kong shipment came in...

Now to have mom try them out.....




So since i have no experience... What are valued criteria?

- Sound amplification
- Sound tone
- Size
- Comfort
- Battery life
- etc
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Old 10-17-2010, 07:57 PM   #15
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I tried to understand this hearing aid issue to find better aids for my mother, but failed. My impression is that it is all a rip-off, but I'm not sure. Anyhow, FWIW, here is a user forum on hearing aids: Hearing Aid Forums | Hearing Loss | Hearing Aids - Powered by vBulletin, and here is a place that sells devices that you can adjust yourself with a downloadable utility: America Hears: High Quality Digital Hearing Aids Direct From The Manufacturer .
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Old 10-25-2010, 07:01 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Rich_in_Tampa View Post
I'd get an audiologic evaluation. Select an audiologist and ENT doc who are not in the business of selling hearing aids. If the only solutions are too expensive, ask whether trying amplification alone is worth it.
.
Excellent advice but I'm not sure practices that don't dispense exist anymore.
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Old 10-25-2010, 07:09 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by robjr100 View Post
My 83 year old mother`s hearing is pretty bad.Does anyone know of a decent priced hearing aid that works reasonably well?

Thanks
You have two things to work on here. One is why is your Mom's hearing bad. It could be anything from cerumen/aging (most likely) to a brain tumor.
Take her to an Audiologist to get tested and an ENT if medical treatment is indicated.
THEN talk about amplification. If your Mom is 83, my experience is that she will need a lot of hand-holding and adjustments. If her hearing loss is complicated, the internet is not a good source for her device. Also be aware that the ear canal skin in the elderly is very thin and sensitive. A stock fits all sizes earmold could cause irritation, infection and ultimate rejection of the hearing aid.
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Old 10-25-2010, 10:11 PM   #18
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