For most people both ears don’t normally have exactly the same degree of hearing loss. Because one ear commonly has worse hearing loss than the other, it sparks the question: Do I actually need two hearing aids, or can I just treat the ear with more considerable hearing loss?
In many cases, two hearing aids are going to be better than just one. But a single hearing aid may be more appropriate in some less common circumstances.
It’s Not accidental That Ears Are a Pair
Whether you know it or not, your ears efficiently function as a pair. That means wearing two hearing aids has specific benefits over wearing one.
- Being Able to Localize Correctly: In order to determine where sounds are coming from, your brain is not only working to interpret but also to place it. This is a lot easier when your brain is able to triangulate, and in order to do that, it requires solid signals from both ears. When you’re only able to hear well out of one ear, it’s a lot more difficult to determine where a sound is coming from (Which may be useful, for instance, if you live near a busy street).
- Focusing on Conversations: The whole point of using a hearing aid is to help your hearing. Other people conversing is something you will certainly need to hear. Because your brain has more sound input when wearing hearing aids, it is better capable of filtering out background noise allowing it to decide what sounds to focus on because they are closer.
- Modern Hearing Aids Work Together: More recent hearing aid technology is designed to work as a pair just like your ears are. The artificial intelligence and advanced features work well because the two hearing aids communicate with each other and, similar to your brain, determine which sounds to amplify and focus on.
- Make The Health of Your Ears Better: Just as seldom used muscles can atrophy, so too can an unused sense. Your hearing can begin to go downhill if your ears don’t receive regular sound input. Wearing hearing aids in both ears ensures that the organs associated with hearing receive the input they need to preserve your hearing. If you already have tinnitus, using two hearing aids can decrease it and also increase your ability to identify sounds.
Does One Hearing Aid Make Sense in Some Scenarios?
Using two hearing aids is the better choice in most cases. But the question is raised: why would somebody wear a hearing aid in only one ear?
Well, usually there are two reasons:
- One Ear Still Has Perfect Hearing: If just one of your ears requires a hearing aid, then you may be best served by using a hearing aid in just one ear but it’s definitely something you should have a conversation about your hearing professional about (having one better ear is not the same as having one perfect ear).
- Monetary concerns: Some individuals think if they can manage with one they will spend less. Getting one hearing aid is better then not getting any at all if you can’t really afford a pair. However, you should understand that with time untreated hearing loss has been proven to raise your overall healthcare costs. Your healthcare expenses have been shown to rise by 26 percent after only two years of neglected hearing loss. So speak with your hearing professional to make sure getting only a single hearing aid is a good idea for you. Discovering ways to help make hearing aids more affordable is an additional service we offer.
Two Aids Are Better Than One
In most cases, however, two hearing aids are going to be healthier for your ears and your hearing than just one. There are just too many advantages to having strong hearing in both ears to ignore. So, yes, in the majority of circumstances, two hearing aids are better than one (just as two ears are better than one). Make an appointment with a hearing care pro to get your hearing tested.