Many hearing aid users have struggled with listening to music, both when they were living with untreated hearing loss and when they were first trying to figure out which program they should set their hearing aids to. Fortunately, newer models can bring you the subtle notes you have been missing.
Problems with Older Devices
Older hearing aids were not advanced enough to pick up the subtly of music. Below are some of the common issues users faced.
The Large, Dynamic Range of Music
Unlike speech, which ranges between 30 and 85 decibels, music has twice as large of a range and includes more frequencies. The piano alone has a 40 percent bigger range in frequencies than the female voice.
Older hearing aid models would cause distortions when trying to handle such a large range.
Front End Problems
This issue occurs when older hearing aids distort the normal input of music. This issue has been mostly resolved with newer models. Using the same setting you would utilize when having a conversation in a quiet place can help when listening to music as well.
Lose Lower Frequencies
The most common type of hearing loss is caused by aging; those with this type of hearing loss usually lose the ability to hear high-frequency sounds. Because of this, hearing aids are programmed to target these sounds. While this design is important to help you hear the voices of women and children, it does not help with music, as much is played at a lower frequency.
Distinguish Speech from Sound
Hearing aids are designed to help you better understand speech in noisy environments by reducing and filtering out background noise. Unfortunately, in older hearing aid models, the devices often mistake a sustained chord as background noise and filter it out.
Minimize High-Frequency Feedback
Older devices were also designed to block out feedback, a squeal or whistle sound produced by the hearing aid. This can lead the hearing aid to mistakenly suppress pure tones from music, such as an organ or flute.
Newer hearing aids have fixed these issues and are even designed with music listening in mind.
To learn more about improving your listening experience or to schedule an appointment with an audiologist, contact CENTA Medical Group today.