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Enhanced Hearing Center - Springfield, MO

Man able to enjoy lively party because he's using two hearing aids instead of one.

It’s unusual for people to get identical levels of hearing loss in both ears simultaneously. Because one ear normally has worse hearing loss than the other, it sparks the question: Can I just use one hearing aid in the ear that’s worse.

In most cases, two hearing aids are will be preferable to only one. But there are some instances, considerably less common instances, that is, that one hearing aid may be the way to go.

You Have A Pair of Ears For a Reason

Your ears effectively function as a pair whether you know it or not. Which means that there are some advantages to using two hearing aids.

  • The Ability to Correctly Localize: In order to figure out where sounds are coming from, your brain is not only working to interpret but also to place it. In order to properly triangulate where sound is coming from, your brain needs input from both ears. It is a lot harder to figure out where sounds are coming from when you can only hear well out of one ear (which may be essential if you happen to live near a busy street, for instance).
  • Modern Hearing Aids Work as a Set: Just as your ears work together naturally, newer hearing aid technology is made to work as a pair. The two hearing aids communicate with one another using advanced features and artificial intelligence to, much like your brain, identify which sounds to amplify and focus on.
  • Improved Ear Health: An unused sense will atrophy just like an unused muscle will. If your ears go long periods without input signals, your hearing can start to go downhill. Wearing hearing aids in both ears ensures that the organs associated with hearing get the input necessary to preserve your hearing. Using two hearing aids can also help minimize tinnitus (if you have it) and improve your ability to discern sounds.
  • Focusing on Conversations: If you use a hearing aid, the whole point is to help you in hearing. Other people talking is something you will definitely need to hear. Using two hearing aids permits your brain to better filter out background noises. Because your mind has more available data your brain can determine what is closer and consequently more likely to be something you want to focus on.

Are There Instances Where One Hearing Aid Is Practical?

Using two hearing aids is the better choice in most cases. But the question is raised: why would somebody use a hearing aid in just one ear?

Well, normally there are two reasons:

  • You still Hear Perfectly in one ear: If only one of your ears needs a hearing aid, then you could be best served by having a hearing aid in just one ear but it’s definitely something you should talk to your hearing professional about (having one better ear is not the same as having one perfect ear).
  • Monetary concerns: Some people think that they can save money if they can use only one hearing aid. If you really can’t afford to buy two, one is better than not getting one at all. It’s significant to know, however, it has been proven that your overall health costs will increase if you have untreated hearing loss. Your healthcare expenses have been shown to rise by 26 percent after only two years of neglected hearing loss. So talk to your hearing expert to make certain getting only a single hearing aid is a smart idea for you. We can also help you figure approaches to make hearing aids more budget friendly.

One Hearing Aid is Not as Effective as Two

In most situations, however, two hearing aids are going to be healthier for your ears and your hearing than just one. The benefits of having strong hearing in both of your ears are simply too many to dismiss. In most situations, just as having two ears is better than having one, having two hearing aids is definitely preferable to having only one. Make an appointment with a hearing care pro to have your hearing tested.

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