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How do digital hearing aids work?

Updated 25/03/2021

How do digital hearing aids work?

How do digital hearing aids work?

 A brief look inside today's modern digital hearing aids

Empowering those with hearing loss

Today's digital hearing aids are discreet and unobtrusive even though they include the most advanced technology out there.  Said technology assists in empowering those with hearing loss to live a better quality of life with better hearing.  You might have just started researching hearing aids or may be wondering how your hearing aids are able to not only enhance your soundscape but also give you access to advanced Bluetooth connectivity and personable focus.

Quick links to information about digital hearing aids

Digital hearing aids

But first, what is a digital hearing aid?

A digital hearing aid is an electronic device that you either wear inside your ear or behind your ear.  These types of digital hearing aids are generically called:  Behind-the-Ear (BTE) or In-the-Ear (ITE) hearing aids.  A hearing aid amplifies sounds so that those with hearing loss can better hear, communicate, connect and get the most out of their lifestyle.

However, those with hearing loss don't see hearing aids as just an amplifier - they see them as more of a lifeline.  A clever and sophisticated communication device that has the ability to empower the hearing impaired - so they live life to the fullest.

Digital hearing aid quality & clarity

The better the quality of the hearing aid the better the sound and the more natural your listening experience will be.  Device features like noise management, feedback manager, automatic volume regulator and bandwidth make the realistic soundscape possible.  The modern advanced hearing aids offer impressive ranges of features, settings and personalised options, so the wearer can experience the best possible sound for their needs and connect wirelessly to devices and to the world.

All digital hearing aids analyse, filter and boost all relevant sounds.  The sound you hear is all based on the way your hearing aids have been programmed.  Your audiologist will program your hearing aids to suit your hearing needs - based on your type of hearing loss.

Digital hearing aid parts

In all good and modern digital hearing aids, there are basic components - microphones, amplifiers, loudspeakers, batteries and processing chips.  The processing chip assists the advanced technology and the batteries provide the power to do so. The three main pieces of technology that ensure the functionality of the hearing aid are the microphone, amplifier and speaker. 

Here are the functions of the main digital hearing aid parts

The microphone receives the sounds, switches the sound waves into electrical signals and transmits them to the amplifier, which then increases the power and level of the signals and finally sends them to the ear through the speaker.  

How do digital hearing aids work?

Here's how a digital hearing aid works

How can digital hearing aids help?

Hearing aids are used for improving hearing and speech understanding for those with hearing loss.  A hearing aid amplifies sound vibrations that go into your ear.  Those with hearing loss generally have surviving hair cells that recognise the most powerful sound vibrations and then switch them into neural signals to be sent to the brain.  

This article was written by Paul Harrison

Meet Paul Harrison, Audiology Expert

Managing Director & founder of Hearing Aid UK, with over 20 years of audiology experience and a member of the British Society of Hearing Aid Audiologists Council (BSHAA) between 2015-2020.

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