Are Rechargeable or Battery-Operated Hearing Aids Better?

Hearing aid technology has evolved immensely over time.

From ear trumpets in the 1600s to the development of the microprocessor and digital hearing aids, rechargeable hearing aids are another advancement that defines their presence and value in the hearing aid market.

Lithium-ion rechargeable hearing aids first hit the hearing aid market in 2016 and have in-built battery compartments compared to traditional zinc-air batteries that affect how users manage their hearing aids.

When deciding between rechargeable and disposable battery-operated hearing aids, individual preference, hearing amplification requirements, lifestyle needs and ease of management are important considerations.

There is no denying a rechargeable hearing aid trend in the market. However, both rechargeable and disposable battery devices are valid options for the hearing aid user.

Benefits of Rechargeable Hearing Aids

Following we're going to talk about the benefits of using rechargeable hearing aids, highlighting the environmental and financial benefits, convenience, and improved technology. If you or someone you know wears hearing aids, you'll definitely want to stick around for this one!

1. Ease of use

Rechargeable hearing aids means the user will no longer have to change batteries every 3-7 days or manually switch devices on and off daily by closing and releasing the battery door.

Rechargeable hearing aids are placed on the charger every night, meaning that the device is charged for all-day power.

2. Easy management

For those with reduced dexterity or feelings in their fingers or vision concerns that find changing small batteries and opening the packaging a challenge, rechargeable hearing aids are an essential advancement in hearing aid technology and can be essential for easy management.

3. Supports independence

Increased ease of management encourages and supports increased independence in the community.

For the individual, this can support quality of life and benefit family, friends and communities.

4. Different options

Rechargeable options include the integrated lithium-ion battery or chargeable silver-zinc batteries. The chargeable silver-zinc battery will support disposable batteries as well.

Lithium-ion batteries offer faster charging, and longer-lasting battery life and are the most popular rechargeable battery technology.

5. Environmentally friendly

Rechargeable batteries are environmentally friendly with no regular battery disposal. Over three years, a pair of hearing aids will use more than 300 disposable batteries.

6. Improved safety

Accidental swallowing of hearing aid batteries are a known hazard for children and pets, and rechargeable batteries eliminate the need for them in the household.

7. Enclosed battery space

Lithium-ion rechargeable hearing aids offer a fully enclosed battery space that is more resistant to dust, dirt and water damage.

8. Improved battery life

Rechargeable hearing aids typically offer a battery life of 24 hours. The charge will last for the entire day, including streaming audio, which increases battery power use.

Battery supply power packs are also available for those travelling who don’t have access to a power supply for the charger.

9. Quick charging

Rechargeable hearing aids typically take three hours to charge fully.

10. Monitor charge

The charge of rechargeable batteries can be easily monitored on hearing aid manufacturer applications, giving a percentage charge.

Disadvantages of Rechargeable Hearing Aids

While rechargeable hearing aids offer many advantages, they also have a few disadvantages. In this part, we'll go over some of the drawbacks of switching to rechargeable hearing aids. So don't worry, the advantages still exceed the downsides!

1. Run out of charge

While a 24-hour charge is sufficient for most, some may worry that they will run out of battery charge and prefer the backup of disposable batteries for instant battery power.

Hearing aid users that stream audio often through phone calls or media may notice their hearing aid battery doesn’t last the total 24 hours.

2. High purchase price

The initial purchase price of rechargeable hearing aids is typically higher than disposable battery hearing aids.

There is, however, a good opportunity to recoup the costs from the cost of supplying disposable batteries for the lifetime of the hearing aids.

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3. Electricity supply

Rechargeable hearing aids require daily access to an electricity supply to recharge. This could be a challenge if travelling, staying away from home, or having an issue with the power supply.

One way to overcome this is to have a battery power pack that can typically offer three additional full charges.

4. Limited options and styles

The majority of rechargeable hearing aids have the housing of the device sitting behind the ear. There are fewer options available for hearing aid users seeking a rechargeable in-the-ear hearing aid.

Rechargeable hearing aids typically suit mild to moderate hearing losses. Hearing aid users with severe to profound hearing loss will find more options with disposable battery-operated hearing aids.

5. Larger in size

Rechargeable hearing aids are often larger than their battery counterparts.

The base of a receiver-in-the-canal hearing aid is commonly bulkier and offers a larger profile behind the ear.

Hearing aid manufacturers regularly release new hearing aid ranges that offer refinements and improvements in performance and function, including smaller sizes and improved ergonomics behind the ear.

To Sum It Up

Rechargeable hearing aids are trending and appear to be a continuing and increasing presence in the hearing aid market.

When making a hearing aid selection, it’s advisable to consider whether the ability to recharge the hearing aid is important for you.

At EarPros, we're not just a hearing aid provider - we're a team of passionate individuals dedicated to promoting hearing health. Our mission is to educate and empower individuals with the resources and information they need to maintain and improve their hearing health.

We do offer comprehensive information about quality rechargeable hearing aids from global manufacturers. We understand that choosing the right hearing aid can be overwhelming, which is why we partner with friendly and knowledgeable hearing aid experts who can guide you through the decision-making process. We're committed to helping you find the best hearing aids to suit your unique needs.

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