Are two ears better than one? Most definitely!
When someone has a treatable hearing loss, in over 90 per cent of cases, the best treatment option is to wear two hearing aids. Aside from providing you with more balanced hearing, using two hearing aids ensures that both ears are receiving equal sound quality, and make it easier to detect where sounds are coming from.
Typically hearing loss occurs in both ears, but some people believe that getting only one hearing aid will “be okay.” However clinical studies have shown that wearing only one hearing aid and depriving the other ear of amplification, results in further hearing loss in the unaided ear.
ListenUP! Canada’s Chief Audiologist, Kate Dekok remarks, “It’s important to keep both our ears active so that we don’t lose the ability to hear and understand. Most people simply cannot hear well using only one ear. If you have two ears with hearing impairment and you wear only one hearing aid, the unaided ear is likely to lose the ability to recognize words properly and more quickly than the ear wearing the hearing aid. The use of two hearing aids assists in keeping both ears working correctly.”
The use of two hearing aids is important for improving your hearing. In addition to providing you with the ability to process sounds more clearly and accurately, and preventing further hearing loss, two hearing aids give users:
Better sound quality – compare mono sound versus the improved effect of stereo sound
Easy, relaxed listening – less strain on your ears and comprehending what is heard
A wider hearing range – hear both high and low frequencies, and from a greater distance
Hearing balance – locate sounds without having to turn your head to use your “good” ear
Reduced feedback and whistling, and greater comfort with loud noises
Another advantage is that two hearing aids have proven successful in reducing the effect to tinnitus — a constant sensation of sound in one or both ears or in the head when no external sound is present, commonly described as a ringing in the ears. An estimated 5 million Canadians suffer from tinnitus, but many report that wearing hearing aids makes the condition less noticeable. The reason for this is hearing aids amplify the sounds that you want to hear, therefore minimizing the effects of tinnitus.
Studies also suggest that users of two hearing aids are reportedly much more satisfied with their hearing aids.
However, many hearing aid users don’t realize that the direct benefits of aiding both ears aren’t the only reason why it’s important to wear two hearing aids. They should also consider that wearing two hearing aids means they can enjoy a much better quality of life. “Two hearing aids help improve communication with family and friends, give you confidence in social settings and provide an overall improvement in hearing that will lead to a better quality of life,” says Dekok.
“You need both eyes in order to see clearly, so doesn’t the same apply to your ears and hearing clearly? If a hearing healthcare professional recommends the use of two hearing aids, it’s because you need both in order to enjoy balanced and better hearing.” Users of only one hearing aid, who suffer hearing loss in both ears, should take this into account and consider having two ears aided.
Article courtesy of ListenUP! Canada. For more information visit ListenUPcanada.com or call toll-free 1-800-331-9180.