Focus Hearing - Overland Park, KS

Woman celebrating her new hearing aids by jumping in the air.

Technology is developing into stronger, smarter, and smaller devices. Generally speaking, the trend is that devices do more and take up less space.

So it’s no surprise that hearing aids are no exception. Though hearing issues have a variety of causes, hearing issues are more prevalent among older individuals, and the world’s population is aging. According to the National Institutes of Health, approximately 37.5 million individuals and 3 million Canadians describe having difficulty hearing, and because age is a better predictor of hearing loss than any other demographic variable, that number is likely to increase.

If you’re suffering from hearing loss, that’s one person too many. Better ways to reduce hearing loss? Let’s have them! Here are some of the innovations that are happening.

Whole-Body Tracking Through Your Hearing Aids

This is so obvious, it’s one of those “Now why didn’t I think of that” developments. Health and fitness trackers have to be worn on the body. So do you really need a device on your wrist if you already have one in your ear? Nope! Or at least, you don’t with some of the newest hearing aids, which in addition to helping fix hearing difficulties such as tinnitus, will also track your pulse, your physical activity, and a whole lot more. Certainly, a wearable like an Apple Watch can do that, but hearing aids can provide you with other kinds of input that can be helpful to monitoring health, like how much time you spend having conversations or listening. How much social involvement you get can actually be a vital health metric, particularly as you get older.

Data Streaming

Virtual assistants like Alexa and Siri have quickly moved from smartphones to in-home devices and the principal focus here is connectivity. Some hearing aids that have Bluetooth capabilities now let users stream audio directly from a device, like a smart TV for instance, to the hearing aids. Android developers now have open-source specs provided by Google which lets them use certain Bluetooth channels to stream uninterrupted audio straight to your hearing aid. This technology is making things like movies and music more satisfying by acting like super-powered wireless headphones.

Big Data Allows Smart Adjustments

Your next hearing aid might make individualized suggestions similar to how a Fitbit informs you of fitness objectives or how Netflix recommends your next movie in line with your viewing trend. Several manufacturers are working on hearing aids that will learn both from the adjustments you make and from listening to the places you go. Some push it even further, crowdsourcing information on how individuals use their hearing aids anonymizing and then aggregating the data. So whether you’re watching TV at home, or in an IMAX theater, your hearing aids will be capable of using this information to recognize what your situation is and make adjustments to provide you with the best audio experience.

Getting Rid of The Batteries For Good

Hearing aids that don’t require their batteries changed? Sound too good to be true? It can be really inconvenient making certain you have extra batteries or that your hearing aids are completely charged. While we’re not likely to see hearing aids that don’t need any batteries, there has been a continuous improvement in rechargeable technology. That means longer in-use time, faster recharging, and less worrying about batteries, all in all, not too shabby.

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.