a mature white man at a convenient store looking at hearing aids

What are OTC Hearing Aids?

OTC or Prescription: Which Hearing Aid is Right for You?

Finding the right hearing aids for your needs can seem overwhelming if you don’t have the right help. There are many different brands of hearing aids, styles, and levels of technology to choose from. Now, with recent news from the FDA, over-the-counter (OTC) hearing aids are also an option for many people.

The best way to decide which hearing aid is best for you is by visiting a qualified hearing healthcare provider. In addition, it’s important to understand how an OTC hearing aid compares to prescription devices.

How Good Are OTC Hearing Aids?

For some people, OTC hearing aids may be a fine solution. These types of hearing aids are designed for adults who have a mild hearing loss and only need a little amplification in quieter environments.

What to Look for in an OTC Hearing Aid

If you are considering an OTC hearing aid, you should consider what degree of hearing loss it is designed to help with and how advanced the technology is. If you have a more complex hearing loss, such as loss in only one ear or tinnitus, then you may need a more sophisticated device. If you only need a little amplification then an OTC hearing aid could help you.

What Are Prescription Hearing Aids?

Prescription hearing aids are medical devices approved by the FDA designed to provide you with amplification and better speech recognition, regardless of your degree of hearing loss. It’s important to note that children or teenagers younger than 18 need to visit a certified hearing specialist and can only be fit with prescription hearing aids.

How to Know Which One is Right for You

When choosing a hearing aid, regardless of if it is over-the-counter or a prescription device, you should consider a couple factors: your degree of hearing loss and your activity level (lifestyle). If you have a moderate hearing loss and you have an active lifestyle where you are in complex listening environments, then you could benefit from a higher level of technology found in a prescription hearing aid. It all depends on what your individual needs are.

Let Us Help You

If you are experiencing difficulty hearing and are considering an over-the-counter device, please contact us for a test to determine if you could be helped by a hearing aid. We can go over hearing aid options and help you decide which device would be best for your needs.