A hearing aid is a complex technical device, which consists of several components. Microphone, amplifier, speaker unit, battery drawer, and earpiece are the main parts. In order to hear well with your hearing devices it is important to keep proper maintenance and cleaning of all the parts of the device.
Like any electronic device, a hearing aid requires energy to work. What power supply is best for you when choosing a particular device model? Let’s answer this question together!
What power supplies are available for hearing aids?
Let’s take a look at the power supplies used by hearing aid manufacturers. Today, all devices work with two types of batteries:
Rechargeable lithium batteries
Zinc-air batteries are well-known power sources, which we have been using in our daily lives for many years. They are suitable for all electronic devices, including hearing aids. All manufacturers use zinc-air batteries of 4 types, which differ in size and energy intensity. They have numbers 10, 13, 312, and 675. The battery type is indicated on the packaging. Each manufacturer specifies battery life. According to study, most often this is correct information.
The low prices of the hearing aid batteries give another plus when choosing a hearing aid model. However, remember that they work for several days or weeks. The time depends on the specific device model. Therefore, you should always be prepared to change the power supplies and have an extra battery with you.
If you bought a model with zinc-air batteries, be sure to have spare ones. Set a schedule of when you change your batteries so that you don’t end up needing to change a battery in the middle of the day.
Fortunately, progress doesn’t stand still. And today we have an alternative to disposable power supplies. If you don’t want to always carry spare batteries with you, select hearing aids with rechargeable batteries!
What is a rechargeable hearing aid?
The rechargeable hearing aid is a device that works with rechargeable lithium batteries. You don’t need to buy disposable batteries and change them weekly anymore. Instead, charge your devices every night during sleep. This procedure is similar to what you do every evening when you put your smartphone on charge.
The first hearing aids with rechargeable batteries appeared about 15 years ago. But until recently, the duration of one battery cycle didn’t exceed about an 8 hour charge. In addition, the power supply significantly increased the size of the hearing aid. This limited its use. Bulky devices reduce wearing comfort and attract the attention of others.
Everything has changed today. Hearing care professionals will choose your hearing aid style with rechargeable power supplies to suit your needs and lifestyle. Forget hearing loss stigma and surprised looks. A modern hearing aid, regardless of the type of battery, is a stylish device, which emphasizes your individuality.
According to statistics, Americans are increasingly choosing rechargeable hearing aids. Dr. Zhanneta Shapiro notes the advantages of using rechargeable batteries that influence decision-making when choosing devices.
Hearing aids with rechargeable batteries are a great solution for people with vision problems, reduced fine motor skills, etc. Such difficulties sometimes make changing power supplies an impossible task.
Long service life
The service life of modern lithium-ion batteries is about 5 years. One full charge is enough to work the hearing aid for around 24 hours. These figures depend on the device manufacturer. By charging your hearing aids every night, you’ll hear perfectly throughout the day and experience no difficulty or discomfort!
Disposable batteries have a small tablet shape, which attracts the attention of children and pets. They are dangerous when ingested. It is important to keep safety in mind when storing extra batteries. Children shouldn’t have access to them to avoid dangerous situations. Having rechargeable batteries alleviates many of the above mentioned concerns.
No need to carry spare batteries
Wearing hearing aids with rechargeable batteries eliminates the need to constantly buy and carry spare batteries. The main thing that the user should remember is to charge their devices on time.
Zinc-air and rechargeable batteries are equally harmful to the ecology. The number of used disposable power supplies is significantly reduced thanks to rechargeable batteries. And this means that even fewer of them are poisoning our planet!
We’ve looked at the benefits of rechargeable hearing aids. Now let’s look at their disadvantages. After all, this is the only way you can evaluate the pros and cons and choose the right hearing aid for you. So, what are the disadvantages of rechargeable batteries?
Dependence on daily recharge
It’s necessary to carry out the charging process every day and in full. To counteract this issue, some manufacturers have created charging stations that hold the charge for several days without requiring a daily charge.
Difficulty replacing rechargeable batteries
This is a rare procedure. However, you’ll not be able to replace a broken power supply yourself. It will require maintenance at the manufacturer. You can always ask your hearing health care professional for a loaner device while yours is in for a repair.
In terms of pricing for rechargeable hearing aids; manufacturers may charge a fee for the charger but given the fact that batteries will no longer need to be changed, price should work out to be the same.
Rechargeable sources solve many problems. However, when choosing a hearing aid, you should evaluate the performance and usability of the device, not its battery. Therefore, before making a final choice, evaluate the benefits and disadvantages of all models. And Audiology Island will help you with this!
About Dr Zhanneta Shapiro
Dr Zhanneta Shapiro received her Masters of Science from Brooklyn College in 2005 and completed her Doctorate of Audiology from Florida University in May 2008. Her graduate training was in various hospitals in the tri-state area and a residency period completed at Ear Nose and Throat Associates of New York. [ Learn More ]