Hearing aids

I have got to the stage I definitely need hearing aids. I am going to book myself in for a test with boots and know very well I need some hearing aids. My question is what sort I should go for not very keen on the nhs ones and as I wear glasses which might be best. I appreciate some are very expensive which I am willing to have if they are good. Any feedback much appreciated.
 

chaffcutter

Moderator
Arable Farmer
Location
S. Staffs
i started with NHS ones with a loop over the ears, waste of time! they kept coming apart and bad clash with wearing specs. I was recommended Specsavers and have digital in-ear ones which I have got on very well with, I go back now and then to get them adjusted as my hearing has deteriorated, no charge. They were about £1600 but a bit back now, but not sure if they will have gone up or down!
I suspect Boots will give a similar level of service and type of aid anyway.
Reminds me I need to get another appointment, haven't been due to covid.
 

Wilksy

Member
Location
East Riding
My daughter has the nhs over the ear ones, main issue we have is condensation in the pipes needs clearing, and wax in the mould but I would think that will be an issue with both options, might not be a bad idea to have both types if one goes down you have a back up whilst they’re in for repair
 
Got my hearing aids phonak behind ear very comfortable and absolutely superb sound quality should of done it a few years ago. They were expensive circa 3k but Boots were superb especially the audiologist. I would recommend anyone struggling to hear get some.
 

Daniel

Member
I'm 39 and have 30-40% hearing loss in my left ear, they say due to an infection at some time, rather than exposure to loud noises.

The NHS were no help in even diagnosing the problem so I went for a private consultation, they recommended a hearing aid for about £2.5k

If I stick my finger in my right ear with the TV on fairly quietly I can barely hear it through my left ear and the tinnitus, bit annoying but I can't bring myself to get a hearing aid already!
 

Cjm

Member
Location
Buckinghamshire
I'm 39 and have 30-40% hearing loss in my left ear, they say due to an infection at some time, rather than exposure to loud noises.

The NHS were no help in even diagnosing the problem so I went for a private consultation, they recommended a hearing aid for about £2.5k

If I stick my finger in my right ear with the TV on fairly quietly I can barely hear it through my left ear and the tinnitus, bit annoying but I can't bring myself to get a hearing aid already!
Similar to you I was first diagnosed with hearing loss in my left ear at 21, but did nothing about it. 2 years ago (age 44)it was becoming more noticeable so I went to specsavers where they diagnosed 60% loss and recommended 1 for £2500! On the off chance I stopped in at the doctors surgery one afternoon, was seen by a nurse straight away, had an appointment at the hospital 2 weeks later, and picked it up 2 weeks after that. It’s a tiny behind the ear Phonak which I hardly know I’m wearing, and I also wear glasses. Originally I was dubious how good it would be so thought I would take the free NHS one and if useful buy a decent one down the line. 2 years in and I still have it. Biggest problem is if the wind is blowing from directly behind it gets annoying so I turn it off. Always struggle if I forget to turn it back on again!
 

Dry Rot

Member
Livestock Farmer
I think if you need one just get one nhs or private the technology now is so good . You don’t realise until you have them what sounds you are missing out on.
It's nice to hear the birds! I lost one of my NHS ones and it cost me £60 to replace it. Now I take them out if I'm not likely to need to hear people. And sometimes it is nice not to have to listen to a lot of nonsense. Sometimes it is quite handy to be deaf -- just point to an ear and most understand, saves having to listen.🤣
 

Daniel

Member
Similar to you I was first diagnosed with hearing loss in my left ear at 21, but did nothing about it. 2 years ago (age 44)it was becoming more noticeable so I went to specsavers where they diagnosed 60% loss and recommended 1 for £2500! On the off chance I stopped in at the doctors surgery one afternoon, was seen by a nurse straight away, had an appointment at the hospital 2 weeks later, and picked it up 2 weeks after that. It’s a tiny behind the ear Phonak which I hardly know I’m wearing, and I also wear glasses. Originally I was dubious how good it would be so thought I would take the free NHS one and if useful buy a decent one down the line. 2 years in and I still have it. Biggest problem is if the wind is blowing from directly behind it gets annoying so I turn it off. Always struggle if I forget to turn it back on again!
I saw an NHS consultant twice and she just said there was nothing she could do, it's got worse in the 2.5 years since, but do the NHS treat anything that's not immediately life threatening or covid related any more?!
 

Netherfield

Member
Location
West Yorkshire
Mrs N has two, GN Resound behind the ear, suffers with tinnitus badly, used to nudge me in bed of a night 'what's that noise' I couldn't hear anything.

Started with NHS, but they were difficult to deal with and would only provide one, eventually as it got worse she went to Amplifon, It's a bit like DFS 50% offer on at the moment when I questioned the price £2500 for the pair, free batteries for 5 ears and twice a year clean and check up.

Lockdown was a nuisance, one gave up and the only place working was Warrington, they made arrangements over the phone to send it back to the makers, they sent out a new one within a few days, but of course it wasn't programmed to her hearing, had to wait around three months before the local shop opened again.

I thought that her programme should surely be kept in a central place or the cloud if you like, but no it's only at the local branch.

Tubes have a tendency to block with wax, worse thing she finds is were a lot of people are present, tends to be able to hear everything all at once.

As @Daniel says NHS are poor in respect and were even before Covid came along, although two hospitals are in the same group the two hearing depts work with a different computer programme, tried to get some batteries early days, because they were prescribed at one the other couldn't find them in the system and had to ring the other hospital.
 

Richard III

Member
NFFN Member
Location
CW5 Cheshire
I have Widex Evoke, the NHS ones are useless in comparison. They were about £4000, so expensive, but that includes as many check ups and repairs as needed for 5 years. They were bought through an independent, who provides great back up (Nantwich Hearing Centre). I persuaded my father to go there too, he is also very pleased with his.

The Evoke is behind the ear, but small, so glasses are no issue. The speaker is in the ear canal though, so there is only a thin wire from the receiver. They connect to my phone by blue tooth, so mobile calls are really easy and crystal clear. I can also listen to Spotify or Podcasts as I work around the farm, this my favourite feature. They can be altered by an app, which is useful, for example, on a tractor I turn the outside noise down and what ever I'm streaming up.

They have a find my hearing aid feature too, which was handy when a swarm of bees went for me and a did a runner, flailing my arms and knocking one out!
 
I have been told that Covid is a real pain with masks, as every time you pull a mask off you can pull the hearing aids off at the same time, and if you are hard of hearing, lip reading is also a problem when everyone wears masks, which I think is a big problem that is never mentioned.
 

Daniel

Member
I have been told that Covid is a real pain with masks, as every time you pull a mask off you can pull the hearing aids off at the same time, and if you are hard of hearing, lip reading is also a problem when everyone wears masks, which I think is a big problem that is never mentioned.
This was what actually made me go to a private consultant after the NHS fobbed me off. When the covid rules were relaxed in summer 2020 I found myself in a noisy room of masked up people all chatting to each other a few times and I really struggled to catch everything an individual person was saying, I was lipreading more than I realised to fill in the gaps!


Do the hearing aids reduce tinnitus does anyone know or do they just mask it by boosting the sounds?
 

Richard III

Member
NFFN Member
Location
CW5 Cheshire
This was what actually made me go to a private consultant after the NHS fobbed me off. When the covid rules were relaxed in summer 2020 I found myself in a noisy room of masked up people all chatting to each other a few times and I really struggled to catch everything an individual person was saying, I was lipreading more than I realised to fill in the gaps!


Do the hearing aids reduce tinnitus does anyone know or do they just mask it by boosting the sounds?

My audiologist says that wearing hearing aids often reduces tinnitus, he claims the tinnitus is replacing the high pitched noises your brain would normally hear. I think my tinnitus is better now I wear a decent hearing aid all day and streaming music for a while can turn it off completely, but it soon comes back. My hearing aids can be programmed to continuously play back ground sounds that are supposed to help, I'm not sufficiently bothered by my tinnitus to bother with them though.
 
I think the reason it took me so long to get something done was probably vanity and worrying people might mock. But having to keep asking people to repeat stuff and still not hearing properly is worse. Also I really struggled with higher pitched voices so now I can actually have a conversation with my grandauter.
 

PSQ

Member
Arable Farmer
Location
Scottish Borders
I cant hear in a crowd or with any background noise, but I'm put off by the cost of going private.
10 years ago I went for laser eye surgery, and the first consultation wasn't so much about my eye sight, but general questions ultimately relating to how much I could afford to pay.
Then they quoted £3400, which I politely refused as it was a lot of money and I wasn't that flush.
The next week they were back on the phone offering a discount at £3000, again I declined. The following week a final discount to £2800, to which I twigged they'd been taking the pee at £3400, so I told them to stop calling. The next week they called back again offering £2800, and I told them unless they could do it for £2200 to stop ringing. A week later they called back to offer the same £2800, but after telling them to delete my details they agreed to do it for £2200.

Is it the same 'salesmanship' and buggering about with buying hearing aids?
 
I can only go on my experience. I looked into various sources and opted for boots as the audiologist was fantastic . She went through various devices and pros and cons I went for top of the range she said from her experience they were the best but no hard sell . I appreciate they want to sell the highest price ones but all my decision and so far pleased with them.
 

Hawkes

Member
Arable Farmer
Location
devon
My audiologist says that wearing hearing aids often reduces tinnitus, he claims the tinnitus is replacing the high pitched noises your brain would normally hear. I think my tinnitus is better now I wear a decent hearing aid all day and streaming music for a while can turn it off completely, but it soon comes back. My hearing aids can be programmed to continuously play back ground sounds that are supposed to help, I'm not sufficiently bothered by my tinnitus to bother with them though.
This . I had tinnitus that was starting to drive me bonkers after years of sawmilling and farming. Two nhs aids and the change was startling plus I can now hear. I wear glasses and don’t find it a problem at all.
My old mum had fancy expensive ones and they were a pain as was always losing the things. Her terrier ate a couple caught in mid air. Don’t think she ever tried to recover them!
 

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