Whether you are in a busy restaurant, on a congested subway platform, or walking along a well-traveled street, there are situations where the noise surrounding you is overwhelming. For the hearing aid users, the problem of background noise can be immense. It’s a big challenge to differentiate one sound from the background noise. Digital noise reduction technology embedded inside hearing aids is one approach to combating this problem. It allows the wearer to block unwanted noise and focus on specific sounds.
Hearing aids that utilize digital noise reduction technology are able to pick up on the unique differences between speech and noise. If a person is talking to you in a quiet room, the device knows that the signals it is picking up are speech signals. Walk into a crowded and noisy room and the hearing aid equipped with digital noise reduction immediately knows that unwanted noise is present. The hearing aid makes the necessary adjustments on its own using built-in software and reduces the volume associated with the noisy channels.
Don’t expect that all background noise will be eliminated. No hearing aid can do that. However, the digital noise reduction feature does help improve communications quite a lot in noisy areas. The general consensus among hearing aid wearers with this technology is that speech sounds better and background noise is less overpowering.
Digital noise reduction technology works best when the background noise it is combating is fairly constant. While digital noise reduction may not be completely effective in reducing the impact of loud music or nearby conversation, it can greatly reduce steady sounds such as an air conditioner or a motor.
Users may wish to consider utilizing other noise reduction strategies in conjunction with their digital noise reduction capable hearing aid. If dining in a crowded restaurant, for example, consider asking to be seated in a quieter part of the room or request that the music playing overhead be turned down.
Digital noise reduction technology isn’t a fix for all background noise problems, but every little bit helps and the technology continues to improve every year.