The Benefits of Bluetooth Hearing Aids

The Benefits of Bluetooth Hearing Aids

In Hearing Aids, Hearing Health by Jeff Baller, Au.D., CCC-A

Jeff Baller, Au.D., CCC-A
Latest posts by Jeff Baller, Au.D., CCC-A (see all)

If you are in the market for a new pair of hearing aids, you might be interested to know what new features are available. Although the older models of hearing aids were effective at the basic task of sound amplification, the latest devices come with a wide range of features. These features include Digital Signal Processors (DSPs) that can transform the sound of the world into something easier to understand, rechargeable batteries, and other technological upgrades. In addition to these new features, Bluetooth connectivity has been a remarkable development in assistive technology. Not only can Bluetooth enable you to stream audio to your aids, but you can also use your smartphone to control settings on your hearing devices. With this two-way connectivity in hand, you might wonder how you were able to get by without Bluetooth in your older hearing aids. Let’s take a closer look at some of the benefits of Bluetooth hearing aids, as well as how you can go about finding a pair with the feature. 

Streaming Audio

One of the main benefits of Bluetooth connectivity is the ability to stream audio directly to your hearing aids. Most users find this streaming capability to be most useful with a smartphone. When you engage Bluetooth connectivity with your device, you can send phone calls and notifications directly to your aids rather than sending them acoustically in the environment. This direct connection improves the audio quality, makes sure you don’t miss a notification, and avoids the cumbersome situation of holding a phone speaker up to your hearing aids for a phone call. Beyond integrating with these functions, your hearing aids can also double as a pair of wireless earbuds when you engage Bluetooth connectivity. You can send music, audiobooks, podcasts, and video sound directly to your hearing aids, providing a personalized and private listening experience. Many televisions are now equipped as Bluetooth hubs, as well, making it possible to send that audio to your aids rather than playing the unit at a loud volume in the room. These streaming possibilities make it possible to move seamlessly between amplified acoustic sound from the environment to music and other audio. 

Smartphone Controls

Older models of hearing aids required the user to manually change settings on their devices. Most had a single switch to control the volume, and those devices could be difficult to manipulate, particularly for those who had issues with manual dexterity, such as arthritis. As opposed to those hearing aids, newer models with Bluetooth connectivity make it possible to use an app on your smartphone to control different settings and parameters on your aids. Volume control is simple to modify with this app, but you can also do a wide range of other personalized settings. Equalization, or EQ, makes it possible to not only change the general volume of your hearing aids but to change the volume on different ranges of sound, ranging from low to high. You might have seen these controls on a stereo system labeled as bass and treble. Hearing aids can use these controls to reduce specific sounds in an environment, as well. Other settings make it possible to create a sound profile on your aids. If you have a few common locations you frequent, such as an office, church, community center, or grocery store, many apps will allow you to save your settings in the app. The next time you go to that location, you can simply press a button to get the right level of amplification for your needs.

If you are interested in getting hearing aids with Bluetooth connectivity, the first step is to get an updated hearing test. This diagnosis will help us pair you with the right hearing aids for your needs. If your individual hearing needs are appropriate for Bluetooth-equipped hearing aids, we can also help you learn how to use these devices to their best capability. With the right combination of individualized settings, media streaming, and direct phone calls, you might find that you can’t imagine using hearing aids without Bluetooth connectivity! Simply give our hearing health professionals a call to make an appointment for a hearing test, and we will guide you through the process.