Hearing aid technology has come a long way since it first originated. Today, these powerful mechanisms are giving people their independence back while helping to improve their quality of life. But these little devices can be a costly investment, which is why it’s important to do your research and learn what will provide the greatest longevity, quality, and the best bang for your buck. With the variety of options to choose from today, it can be a daunting decision to make. To help make this process easier, we’re delving into the debate surrounding rechargeable hearing aids vs batteries to guide you in your purchase.
Disposable Batteries for Hearing Aids
There is a wide variety of factors that can impact the longevity of your hearing aids, and one of the main ones is the degree of hearing loss. This dictates just how hard the battery has to work in order to amplify sound and allow you to hear clearly. When it comes to disposable batteries, there are many options and price points to consider. Back in the day, these batteries were primarily mercury-based, but today, they are predominantly made with zinc. These zinc-based batteries – also known as ‘zinc air’ – are powerful, but they don’t always offer the lifespan you may be expecting. Zinc batteries are activated once the backing is peeled off and they’re exposed to the air – hence the name. The problem with this is they will start to drain and lose power immediately once that backing is removed, even without being placed in the hearing aid.
Additionally, other factors such as lifestyle, humidity, battery storage methods, Bluetooth usage, and even altitude can also impact the lifespan of these batteries. Depending on the size of the battery and other influencing factors, you can expect them to last anywhere from 3 to 12 days. So you can imagine just how many you’d have to purchase throughout your lifetime.
Beyond the basics, it’s imperative also to consider the impact this may have on your quality of life. As the batteries drain and reach the end of their charge, it will alter your ability to hear properly, which can happen unexpectedly and at times when you may need them most.
Rechargeable Hearing Aids
Conversely, there are numerous advantages of rechargeable hearing aids – most notably, convenience. Instead of changing out the batteries every few days, certain systems today only require a replacement once a year. But what about the cost? Well, considering you’d need to purchase about 100 disposable batteries each year on average, it actually works out to very similar in price for a rechargeable unit. And cost factor aside, the energy capacity that certain zinc-based rechargeable hearing aids offer users equates to 40% more power on average in comparison.
However, what truly makes rechargeable systems superior comes down to the quality of life – after all, that’s what really matters. With a battery that charges in under fours hours and lasts all day, users can get the reliability and confidence they need when going about their day to day life. And that’s something that you just can’t get with disposables. For those who are environmentally conscious, many rechargeable hearing aids are also 100% recyclable, which helps to prevent an enormous amount of waste from entering our landfills. So it’s a purchase that you can feel good about too.
To learn more on this topic and which is best suited for your budget and lifestyle, visit us at Robillard Hearing Centre. We are a leading hearing clinic based in Ottawa and the surrounding area. Our expert audiologists will assess your hearing, offer expert advice and answer any questions you have. Get in touch today!