The 5 C's of Better Hearing
When you come to Professional Hearing for a hearing aid fitting, we utilize the 5 C’s to of Better Hearing to guide us. We strive to find the best hearing solution for each individual and if one of these C’s is not met, the solution is not optimal. If you already have hearing aids but don’t like them, it’s likely one of these C’s was not met. Please come in and we’ll see if we can help.
The first C is Comfort. Your hearing aid should be physically comfortable in your ear. The “coupler” that fits into your ear (an ear mold, a custom hearing aid shell, or an ear dome) should be comfortable to wear. It should not be too tight and cause discomfort, nor should it be too loose and slip out. We like the hearing aid to be snug and comfortable but not too tight. One must be able to wear the hearing aid for many hours without any discomfort. This is the first test: wearing a hearing aid for 10 to 12 hours a day without feeling discomfort. It will impact how you hear and how successful a hearing aid user you will be.
Once you're comfortable with wearing the hearing aid then we can put focus on the clarity of the sounds that you are hearing. Hearing aids should make sounds louder but only loud enough to give you clarity in speech. Often times, new users would come in and request we make the hearing aid as loud as possible. This is usually not productive because when sounds are too loud they often become distorted. It is important to give you clarity in speech without being too loud. Depending on your hearing loss, you may hear more or less background noise. Current technology does not allow us to eliminate background noise. Our objective is to make background noise manageable so that it does not disturb you or your ability to hear and understand in the presence of noise.
Convenience means the hearing aid should be easy to use. This is especially important for those with issues with their hands. In the beginning you might need to take some extra time to insert or remove the hearing aid. After about 3 weeks, you should be comfortable putting it in and taking it out. You should be comfortable opening and closing the battery door and replacing batteries or putting it in the charging kit. Once using your hearing aid becomes a part of your daily routine it will make your life easier.
Your hearing aid should look good to you. This can mean it is discrete and blends in with your hair or skin color or it can be worn as an accessory. Hearing aids come in all shapes and colors. Some people don’t mind how their hearing aids look while others are more sensitive. Cosmetics are important to make sure you feel confident while wearing your hearing aid.
Connectivity is a new addition to the original 4 C’s. The latest hearing aids have begun to connect with cell phones, tablets, TVs, music players, etc. These devices help us stay connected with our friends, family, media, and the world around us. For those who like technology and like to be connected with their devices, this is an important aspect of a successful fitting.
If we are able to meet each of these about 5 objectives of Better Hearing, you will be on your way to hearing better, understanding better, being more confident, and feeling more comfortable with your hearing difficulties. We hope these 5 C's help you understand some of the challenges hearing aid users face, as they begin their journey to better hearing. Better hearing is not a quick fix; rather it is a journey, a destination, and a process.