Hearing a person speaking in a quiet room is very different from trying to hear a conversation in a crowded diner. Many digital hearing aids have various listening programs to help compensate for variations in listening environments. Having access to multiple listening programs ensures that you can hear at your best no matter what atmosphere you are in.
When you first receive your hearing aid, your hearing professional will program your device with an external computer. This process allows a number of individual processing characteristics to be fine-tuned into a number of distinct listening programs. When you start wearing your device, these programs can be accessed manually or automatically to match whatever situation you find yourself in.
You may be surprised at the variety of listening programs your hearing aid is able to run. You can access programs that reduce feedback, help shift high frequencies to lower ones (making them more comfortable to hear), help block out unnecessary background noise, and help make speech patterns in quiet environment clearer. These are just a few of the possibilities–your hearing care professional will work with you to choose which ones are most appropriate based on the condition of your own hearing and the situations you encounter most often.
The method you use to access these different programs varies from device to device. Some models include a small fob (much like a remote control) that allows the user to choose a program or to select or adjust other features of the hearing aid. You may be able to switch from program to program via a small switch, or your device may determine the best program for the situation without requiring your input.
Hearing aids with multiple listening programs can be especially useful for young children. These programs allow parents to quickly change their child’s listening settings to find the most comfortable choice. This in turn gives hearing care professionals additional insight into which settings will produce the best results for the child.
A hearing aid with multiple listening programs can help you enjoy a more comfortable and natural listening experience.