Updated: Feb 24
Did you know that when it comes to hearing aids, more expensive doesn’t necessarily mean better? Yet, despite the sticker shock of realizing that hearing aids often cost more than $2,000 for just one ear, too many people go with the advice of the audiologist: avoid low cost hearing aids and stick with the more expensive ones.
But are expensive hearing aids actually going to do a better job of improving your hearing than affordable hearing aids will?
After all, with an average price of $4,600 for a pair of hearing aids, one has to wonder if they are actually worth that much. Many premium hearing aid options actually run up to $8,000 for a pair, sometimes even more!
With most hearing aid prices so high, online retailers and some Big Box stores offer hearing aid at prices that are around 75% below the average price. This begs the question: since they cost so much less, how different is the impact on your hearing?
You would think that more expensive hearing aids would be of significant higher quality, but that does not appear to be the case.
Dr. Ruby Cox of the University of Memphis in Tennessee said, “there is remarkably little published evidence to show that premium hearing aids give better real-world outcomes than basic hearing aids”.
Her study, as mentioned in the link above, corroborates that hypothesis as well, and she is hardly the only one who has come to that conclusion. Study after study keeps reaching the same conclusion: there is no significant difference in quality between premium and basic hearing aids.
In fact, according to the American Journal of Audiology, there was no effect on outcomes from $600 hearing aids when compared to $3,600 hearing aid pairs.
Dr. Cox’s study also reveals a disturbing trend: 85 percent of those who rejected hearing aids or didn’t like them still ended up paying the higher price ($3600 vs $600), even though there was no significant difference!
Think about the ramifications of spending this kind of money on hearing aids: how frustrated would you feel knowing that you are spending so much more on hearing aids that you need to. Look at the table below.
Assuming you spend $4,600 on your hearing aids (the national average), you are spending close to $100 per month, assuming your hearing aids last the industry standard of four years. Even if you go down to $3,600 for a pair, you would still be spending roughly $75 a month. Is it any wonder that so many people think hearing aids aren’t worth the cost?
Now if you look at the bottom row, at $1,200 for a pair of hearing aids, you would only be paying $25 a month for them. That is less than a dollar a day!
Keep in mind that the table above assumes you will hold on to your hearing aids for four years – that is actually often not the case. Many people look for new hearing aids after about two years, especially since technology is constantly changing. This means that instead of paying $100 for hearing aids each month, you would actually be paying $200. Quite a difference!
However, with low cost hearing aids, people are more likely to purchase them more quickly as there is little financial impact with that purchase and they still get upgraded to newer technology.
Online retailers often benefit greatly from this, as they are often a go-to source for those who either cannot afford expensive hearing aids or who are simply looking for a more affordable solution.
Please do not give in to the temptation to buy overly expensive hearing aids. They are usually just as effective as the more affordable options. If need be, take advantage of any guarantees or trials you may receive. For example, Hearing Wisdom offers a 60-day trial and 100% refund period for all hearing aids. By taking advantage of such offers, you will know first-hand just know effective affordable hearing aids can be.
The next time you search for hearing aids, pay extra attention to the more affordable options. Your wallet and ears will thank you!