Abstract picture of bluetooth waves representing wireless technology.

 

Are Bluetooth hearing aids worth it?

What’s the best thing about getting new hearing aids? It’s not just that you’re able to hear clearly again…it’s getting back your life! You can do almost anything with hearing aids these days. One of the exciting features available is bluetooth compatibility. Bluetooth technology took the world by storm in the late 1990s as a way to transfer data over short distances from one smart device to another. So if you’re shopping for a hearing aid, ask yourself: Are Bluetooth hearing aids worth getting?

Benefits of Bluetooth Hearing Aids

In years past, if you wanted to comfortably wear headphones to listen to music, you might have to take off your hearing aids. But by doing so, you reduced the quality of the sound. Bluetooth hearing aids solve this problem because it turns your hearing aids into headphones – in function at least.

Bluetooth hearing aids connect your hearing aids wirelessly to smart, modern technologies like a TV, computer, smartphone or tablet, bringing music, conversations, movie dialogue and more straight to your ears. The sound quality is clear and without any background noise you might’ve picked up if you were trying to hear from across the room.

Note that most hearing aids are Bluetooth-compatible rather than having the technology themselves. This allows them to seamlessly communicate with any Bluetooth-enabled device like those listed above using a Bluetooth streamer. Bluetooth streamers are small devices that link your devices to your hearing aids. In terms of function, there’s not much of a difference other than needing to get the small device. But the great thing about it is that rather than buying new hearing aids, you may just need to get a streaming device to enjoy Bluetooth.

It’s important to talk to your hearing specialist about any devices you’d like to use with your hearing aids and how you might use them to ensure that the technology is compatible. Most devices purchased new in the last 5 years or so will be.

Pros & Cons of Bluetooth Hearing Aids

The pros of Bluetooth hearing aids abound. With bluetooth-enabled hearing aids, you can do useful things like:

  • Take calls directly with your hearing aids.
  • Hear your grandson’s voice in crystal clarity when you video chat on your desktop computer.
  • Connect your hearing aids to the TV while watching with family. Adjust the hearing aid volume to a comfortable level while the rest of the family watches at a volume comfortable to them.
  • Watch your favorite show on a video streaming service on your tablet while waiting in the doctor’s office.
  • Most Bluetooth streamers can connect to multiple devices at once so you can switch between listening to the TV and taking a call with little effort.
  • Bluetooth isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Bluetooth isn’t the next Beta videotape. It has been around for years. It’s trusted by manufacturers and continues to be the industry standard.

There are some cons to consider when determining whether Bluetooth hearing aids are right for you.

  • Bluetooth uses more battery juice than traditional hearing aid functions. Hearing aid batteries are relatively cheap so this may still be worth your while, and you can get rechargeable hearing aids, which should last all day even when using Bluetooth. Just be sure to charge them every night.
  • Your Bluetooth hearing aids may require a small streamer pendant, which can be worn around your neck or in your pocket. It may not work without it.
  • You may need to be near the device to use Bluetooth. For example, if you walk to another room while using Bluetooth to listen to music on your desktop computer, the Bluetooth may stop working after a certain number of yards. This might seem like a pain, but you couldn’t have done this with regular headphones either. The solution would be to store and play music from your smartphone, which you can carry in a pocket if you want to listen to music while walking around.

What Do Bluetooth Hearing Aids Cost?

Bluetooth is becoming more common in hearing aids because so many people like you find it so beneficial. The prices are dropping and you can now get Bluetooth hearing aids for a small percentage more than you’d pay for more basic hearing aids. And if you already have hearing aids, it may just be a matter of buying a Bluetooth streamer from your hearing aid manufacturer. It’s definitely worth asking about when you meet with a hearing specialist. Explore your options to decide if they’re worth it to you.