Picture of of a senior shoppingWhether you are getting your first set or looking for an upgrade, purchasing hearing aids is an investment, one you want to make wisely. They come in different sizes, styles and with a variety of features, so how do you know what’s right for you?

For that matter, how can you spot a scam product, because there are plenty of low-quality hearing aids out there? Consider these seven facts to help you made informed hearing aid choices.

1. You Need Professional Help

It is very common to lose some of your hearing ability as you age. In fact, about one in every three people over the age of 65 does suffer a decrease in their hearing, according to the Hearing Loss Association of America. You shouldn’t just assume you are one of them and start shopping for hearing aids, though. Start with a trip to your doctor for an ear exam and a professional hearing test. The test will come in handy if you do need to purchase hearing aids.

2. Size Isn’t Everything

Small hearing aids aren’t necessarily the most practical choice and larger ones also don’t automatically have more power. In the world of hearing aids, size is a very relative thing. Base your size choice on a couple factors like whether it’s important to you to have a device that is less visible. It really is a matter of personal choice, just makes sure you have all the facts about the model and don’t just pick ones out that are smaller.

3. Size Does Matter When It Comes to Batteries

One issue you do need to consider with small hearing aids is battery size. The small units tend to be less cost-effective when it comes to power. If that’s the case, maybe consider a rechargeable unit instead of one that uses disposable batteries.

4. No Two People Have the Same Hearing Needs

It’s okay to ask around to see what brands and models other people like but keep it in perspective. Choosing a hearing aid is a unique experience, so what works for one person may not be right for you. When you do query others, focus more on features. Ask what features they like best and why what they wish they had gotten and what they could live without – this is information you can use as you shop.

5. You Need a Warranty

This is the difference between the cheap online hearing products that just amplify sound and a quality hearing aid you purchase from a certified professional retailer. You are making a significant investment, so why wouldn’t you want a warranty? Ask what warranty comes with any model you look at such as:

  • Is there a loss and damage warranty?
  • How long is it?
  • Does it offer a full replacement?
  • Protect your investment by buying from a retailer that offers a full warranty.

6. You Want a Trial Period

Along those same lines, you only want to consider units that come with a trial period – preferably 30 to 90 days. This allows you to wear the hearing aids and see if they fit well into your life. It protects you from buying a product that isn’t comfortable, too. Ask about the trial period and get it in writing before you sign anything.

7. Hearings Aids Need Maintenance

It’s something you might not plan for, but it is necessary. Ask your retailer about a maintenance program to increase the shelf-life of your hearing aids.

8. You Need Two

You really do. You have two ears and if you buy a hearing aid for just one, if won’t go well. The hearing process is designed to be synchronized and, without that, you might actually hear worse. Understand before you shop that you are buying two products.

Approach buying hearing aids the same way you would if buying a car. Do some research before hand and shop around to get the features you need.