If you have a mild hearing loss and are experiencing a lot of trouble coping without some sort of amplification, you know it's time to go to an audiologist to see about getting hearing aids. However, you might be resistant to this because of the price of the hearing aids -- even with insurance, they can be rather expensive, depending on your deductible and your coverage. One option you can find for a lower price is a personal sound amplification system, or PSAP, but don't get taken in by the cost. While there are times when a PSAP will work, hearing aids offer a much better deal overall.


Hearing aids are tailored to your hearing specifically, and with digital aids that are programmable, you can have a few different programmed channels for different situations. For example, you might have one for when you see your friends' children; in this situation, you'll need to have better high-frequency amplification if the children have high-pitched voices. Or, you could have one that reduces amplification at certain frequencies to help cut out background noise.

Repair Warranties

Hearing aids also come with warranties, and your audiologist can diagnose and fix a lot of minor repair issues with the aids, should you need that. PSAPs don't really offer much unless you're getting a more specialized PSAP via special order. An over-the-counter amplifier, though, won't have much product protection, so you'll be out that money if the product breaks.

Medical Cures

One of the more important aspects of getting actual hearing aids is that you have a hearing exam done, and many PSAP companies do advise seeing an audiologist first. During the exam, the audiologist will be able to look for signs that your hearing issues are linked to potential medical issues that can be solved. Audiologists can't cure the medical conditions, but if they can identify something and get you to an ENT, you could end up needing less amplification -- or even none.

For example, a block of earwax can plug up your ear canal, reducing hearing substantially in that ear. Why spend your life buying over-the-counter amplifiers that don't work that well, when all you have to do is go to an audiologist who can remove the wax?

If you'd like more information about hearing aids, make an appointment with an audiologist like http://www.HearDenver.org who can dispense the aids if you need them. You will have amplification that works much better for you.