Hearing Aid Question...

   / Hearing Aid Question... #1  

Panik

Gold Member
Joined
Mar 29, 2013
Messages
417
Location
NW Ga - somewhere near that time zone thingy
Tractor
Kubota bx2360
Was reading posts this morning over coffee and came across one that got me to thinking about a topic I've been avoiding.

In addition to a number of other things, I've been a scientist for an industrial chemical remediation firm and a zookeeper. Two of the occupational hazards with those have been working around a lot of heavy equipment (dozers/loaders, shears/ram-hoes) and a rare bird/parrot breeding facility (lots of horny, defensive screaming birds). I also extensively involved in competitive shooting from roughly 9-21 years old.

Point being that I'm 47 and about 6 years ago I took a hearing test with the audiologist that shares the building with my ENT. Despite being reasonably conscientious about wearing hearing protection throughout my life my hearing is bad enough that I should be wearing a hearing aid in my left ear and could also wear one in my right ear if I wanted. I've avoided getting hear aids because I've always considered them to be cost-prohibitive and there have been other priorities - the needs of my 3 children and health costs stemming from my wife's auto-immune disorder.

With the OTC vs prescription regulatory changes for hearing devices in 2022/2023 I was wondering if anyone had a sense of the current costs for hearing aids?.... and or suggestions for more budgets minded hearing devices?
 
   / Hearing Aid Question... #2  
Mine cost me 50 bucks and that included everything and they are high quality but then I have Federal Employees BC/BS and it paid for everything but that initial exam which I did in the hospital audio lab. Mine are Phonax and come with a cell phone AP that I can set to deliver the sensitivity I require. When I got them, I had my choice between 4 different ones. I took the median set. Quite happy with them actually but when I shoot (often), I wear Walkers Game Ears.
 
   / Hearing Aid Question...
  • Thread Starter
#3  
That's amazing!... and thank you for sharing. For some reasons I've had it in my mind that decent aids cost thousands of dollars and there was absolutely no opportunity for coverage by insurance as a general rule.

Obviously coverage varies by employer, insurer and plan, but I'm on municipal BC/BS and it gives me a bit of hope. I get by reasonably well right now, and everyone at work is understanding. However it does get in the way socially at times..... kinda sucks being present in multi-person conversations but not really being able to participate because while I can generally hear someone talking there's often a lag while I have to process and play "fill in the blank" for the words I couldn't make out.

Truth be told, in my mid-20's I stopped going to bars with friends because any conversation was a lost cause.
 
   / Hearing Aid Question... #4  
Call your BC/BS provider and ask them if they will cover them. You'll have to take a hearing test to qualify, what I did.

Seen them for sale in the newspaper and they all are expensive to boot. I was pleasantly surprised that our healthcare plan covered the cost as well, but they did, other than the initial visit and like I said, got mine through the hospital hearing clinic. Real happy with mine, especially the phone AP that makes them fully adjustable and mine came with a charging case as well as extra 'thingies' that go in your ear.
 
   / Hearing Aid Question... #6  
Shop the internet for OTC (over the counter) hearing aids. There are various outfits rating their choice of best. You may get by for $300 or less.
 
   / Hearing Aid Question... #7  
In my case, 50 bucks was a lot less.... The ones I got retailed for over 2 grand and with BC/BS, follow up's are free. I see those what I consider 'sucker ads' in the paper all the time. The aids might be fairly cheap but you pay for all the follow up's.
 
   / Hearing Aid Question... #8  
I have had 3 sets of hearing aids at about $2000 each (from Costco). My experience (yours might differ) is that over the counter aids work about as well. I have tried several otc aids, ranging from about $50 to $300. The $300 aids worked the best. The major problem is that the hearing test, and the aids, covers only the maximum frequency of about 8 khz. The maximum natural hearing is about 15 khz to 20 khz.
 
   / Hearing Aid Question... #9  
I think it depends on how bad your hearing loss is. I have had profound hearing loss for 25 years and the only devices that work for me at all are high dollar - about $3,500 each - and my insurance doesn’t pay a dime. My current ones are 7+ years old and starting to fail. I need news one, but sure hate shelling out that kind of money. Cheaper ones just don’t work for me. I wish they did.
 
   / Hearing Aid Question... #10  
I think it depends on how bad your hearing loss is. I have had profound hearing loss for 25 years and the only devices that work for me at all are high dollar - about $3,500 each - and my insurance doesn’t pay a dime. My current ones are 7+ years old and starting to fail. I need news one, but sure hate shelling out that kind of money. Cheaper ones just don’t work for me. I wish they did.

You need a more comprehensive health plan I'd say.
 
 
Top