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Kinda OT, Huh? What? (hearing questions for you folks)

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  • Kinda OT, Huh? What? (hearing questions for you folks)

    OK, so SWMBO arranged a free hearing test for me today at the local senior center. Of course I failed, I have had tinnitus for over 30 years (I am 65) and I know my hearing ain't what it used to be. Loud music, machines, power tools, banging metal. motorcycles, loud cars, chain saws, model airplane engines, lawn mowers, fire crackers, guns and all other manners of guy fun has taken its toll. I go next week for a full screening to see just how bad it is and what can be done about it. I am sure they are going to recommend hearing aids, and I guess I need them but before rushing headlong into it I figured I would ask who out there has them and what do you think about them? I wonder how much of a hassle they are, are they hard to get used to, why the hell do they cost so damn much, things to look for and stay away from and any other questions I need to ask?
    Any feedback will be greatly appreciated.
    Sole proprietor of Acme Buggy Whips Ltd.
    Specialty products for beating dead horses.

  • #2
    My significant other finally got me to take a hearing test about a year ago. I am 64. As expected, I too failed. To keep the peace, I purchased the aids. I did this at Sam's Club. Price over $3000. The price is ridiculous for what you get. I believe the price is driven by what medicare and insurance companies will pay. I like the Sam's Club offering as they are lifetime guaranteed, including maintenance. Mine have several selectable modes for various environments (mine are normal, noisy, party and music), which are set up by the audiologists. The thing I like about these is that the piece that goes into the ear canal is about 1/8 inch in diameter, which causes very little irritation. The main part hangs behind the outer ear. Also, mine are reprogrammable, so can be tweaked as time goes on and hearing loss continues its downward trend. I do not wear mine all of the time (yet). As a side note, mine also came with a changeable set of silicone covers for the piece that goes in the ear canal. One for day to day (the 1/8" small one) and another set that seals the ear canal for shooting or really noisy environments. The shooting ones work well for small calibers, however I use additional protection for higher calibers. Just my experience and two cents. YMMV.

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    • #3
      Mine magnify EVERYTHING. I only use them to watch television and keep the volume at peaceful marital bliss.
      Even then I can hear people wiggling in their chairs, forks scraping on dinner plates, etc.
      Mine are programmable as well, but don't seem to help the overpowering noise from everywhere.
      Glad I got them but still a pain in the arse.

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      • #4
        The natural loss of hearing due to advancing age is called presbycusis. Hearing aids can certainly help. On the other hand, if you have been married for a very long time, you might want to reconsider whether you want them or not.

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        • #5
          I too am 65, recently took a hearing test, and failed. I am going in for hearing aids in a month.

          HOWEVER ... I see a problem coming up. My dearest companion of nearly 2 score years has always had a habit of waiting until I was most unlikely to hear before chirping up in a soft, indoor voice and asking for a response. For example, I will be in the kitchen with the coffee grinder going and she will be in the living room with the TV going, facing away from me, and then she asks a question... Other people have noticed the same thing. When we were poor college students and sharing a house to keep down expenses the other people commented on it.

          Somehow I know that she will never accept that there are two sides to this communication deal... and that it's not totally my medical problem if she is whispering at me from the next county over while I am standing between active D-9 Dozers and Jackhammers.

          AAAAIIIIIEEEEEEEEEEE

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          • #6
            Just the reason we need to all get behind the fight for legal silencers. It's crazy, in countries where guns are restricted silencers are sold over the counter as hearing protection. In the U.S. you pay $200 for a tax stamp & wait 6-9 months. Hunters aren't going to wear ear muffs or other hearing protection & I don't want our Grandkids to end up like us.

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            • #7
              The reason they cost so much is because "only" licensed practitioners can sell them (FDA and State Gov Regs)
              Supposedly they know what the settings should be. I don't mean to be sarcastic but I had a hearing test last year and they
              had a computer in the sound booth with me and it was running and I could hear the HD and Fan even with my ear muffs on.
              After the test ( which I failed ) I told the licensed person that the PC should not be in the booth due to noise and she said " Well, no one else has ever complained !" ..........well DUH ! I left in a hurry...having a license does not mean you are smart !

              There is a movement to bypass the Hearing Aid Industry and it's absolute control of supply, distribution and pricing.
              I heard one of the drivers for this and they say that hearings aids should cost in the 200 dollar range if they can get the laws changed. It is one big ripoff

              Walmart took a case last year to a Federal Appeals court in Texas last year and won !. The court said as I understand it , that the FDA rules did not specify a license as being required. Thus Walmart in Texas can sell direct to the consumer without all the hoopla. Obviously all the Licensed practioners are screaming to high heaven--I can even hear them with poor hearing !.

              I really hope this gets traction, as I need a hearing aid also

              Rich
              Last edited by Rich Carlstedt; 12-06-2017, 12:09 AM.
              Green Bay, WI

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              • #8
                I have suspicions that I am losing high frequency hearing due to my job. I am very bad about not wearing ear plugs when doing the walk arounds on the 747. When the air packs are running along with the APU, its a very noisy environment.

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                • #9
                  Hunters have it the worse - long periods of dead quiet - ears are kinda like the pupils of your eyes in the dark - they allow for more sound to come in when it's dead quiet or are more receptive to it somehow, then like a light switch getting flicked on ---- BOOOMMM!!!

                  congrats --- you just destroyed a certain percentage of those little vibration receptors thingies or whatever

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                  • #10
                    The sales pitch you will get is to get a aid with lots of "Channels"
                    The more,you get , the higher the $$$$
                    They have like 8,16,32,64 and upto 96
                    Each channel covers a certain frequency
                    My deafness is not general and is strongly frequency related
                    ( for example here only--- I can hear all the white piano keys, but not the black ones !)
                    SO ideally I want channels for the black keys only, otherwise other normal noise will drive me crazy as I don't need them amplified.

                    So do you think they can do that when they don't even understand that a hearing booth should be totally free of extraneous noise during a test.
                    I think not.
                    Rich
                    Green Bay, WI

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                    • #11
                      Theres a video floating around on Facebook of a hearing test, running through all the frequencies, the only problem is that facebooks audio compression codec destroys the audio output to such an extent that everyone thinks they have hearing loss!!

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Dan_the_Chemist View Post
                        I too am 65, recently took a hearing test, and failed. I am going in for hearing aids in a month.

                        HOWEVER ... I see a problem coming up. My dearest companion of nearly 2 score years has always had a habit of waiting until I was most unlikely to hear before chirping up in a soft, indoor voice and asking for a response. For example, I will be in the kitchen with the coffee grinder going and she will be in the living room with the TV going, facing away from me, and then she asks a question...
                        I thought it was just my wife. I'm not alone!
                        It's all mind over matter.
                        If you don't mind, it don't matter.

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                        • #13
                          Lost low frequency hearing from left ear when I got enterovirus (hand, mouth, feet disease) from my 2y daughter.

                          Hearing test doesn't show much loss in speech frequency range but for can't hear a **** what for example my father is saying as he has very low tone.

                          Left ear actually sounds like broken loudspeaker. Sound has like lots of distortion added to it and I think this does not show so well in hearing tests.
                          Location: Helsinki, Finland, Europe

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                          • #14
                            Ditto what others have posted. Had one about ten years ago (I was about 60), first thing I noticed was my diesel pickup sounded like a Sherman tank and the TV was so bad I started using captioning. Fortunately, the state of Pennsylvania has a two week trial period for hearing aids, I got a full refund except for shipping.
                            Fast forward to present, my hearing is much worse now, but I am not considering trying one again. I'll settle for turning the volume up or saying "huh" and "what"
                            , or pretending I heard what a person said and try to fake my way through a conversation.

                            What's that you said?

                            Oh yeah, stay away from Miracle Ear

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                            • #15
                              I waited to age 80 to get my hearing aids. Should have done it 30 years ago.

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