What? What did you say? Are you having trouble hearing?
Well you are not alone because over 35 million kids and adults in the U.S. have some amount of hearing loss. As you can imagine hearing loss can have a undesirable effect on formal and informal relationships and ability to perform tasks effectively.
Activeforever.com only offers personal sound amplifiers for sale and topical information on hearing aids vs personal sound amplifiers. Both products do improve hearing and even share a lot of the same sound amplifying technology. However true hearing aids can only be prescribed by a medical professional such as an audiologist.
One of the biggest differences between personal sound amplification products (PSAPS) and hearing aids is price. A top of the hearing aid can cost as much as $10,000.00 while top of the line personal sound amplification products can be purchased for under $1,000.00. Even at the lower price the sound filtering and amplification technology of a (PSAPS) can be greater than that of the more traditional type of advice and according to Able Planet chief executive Kevin Semcken who showed off the product at the Consumer Electronics Show in January, boasting about how it will offer those with hearing loss a lower-priced alternative to hearing aids. "Semcken said. "Our personal sound products will outperform their hearing aids, and they're going to be more than half the price." You can purchase the Able Planet PSAP2500 In Ear Amplifier Personal sound amplifier online.
Enter the US Government and the FDA and some would even toss around a little conspiracy theory about how doctors and audiologist want to control the hearing aid market. The two are really segmented by definition and the FDA gets to provide the definition.
The regulations describe a hearing aid as "any wearable apparatus or device intended for, offered for the purpose of, or signified as aiding persons with or compensating for, impaired hearing." (21 CFR 801.420) This classification includes both air conduction and bone conduction products in a variety of styles (e.g., behind-the-ear, in-the-canal, body worn). Hearing aids are subject to diverse types of premarket review requirements than cochlear implants or implantable middle ear hearing products, which are class III devices, needing a permitted premarket approval (PMA) before marketing. (Section 513(a) of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (21 U.S.C. 360c(a)).
Personal Sound Amplification Products (PSAPs)
Personal Sound Amplification devices are envisioned to amplify environmental sound for non-hearing impaired customers. They are not intended to compensate for hearing deficiency. Examples of situations in which PSAPs classically are used include hunting, bird observing, listening to lectures with a distant speaker, and listening to lenient sounds that would be hard for normal hearing individuals to hear (e.g., distant discussions, presentations). Because personal sound amplification devices are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or mitigate disease and do not alter the structure or function of the body, they are not devices as defined in the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act. As such, there is no governing classification, product code, or definition for these products. Furthermore, there are no requirements for registration of producers and listing of these products with FDA.
However, personal sound amplification devices are subject to applicable provisions of the Radiation Control for Health and Safety Act of 1968, under which FDA regulates electronic products that emit sonic vibrations, such as sound amplification equipment. (See also 21 CFR 1000.15.) Manufacturers of PSAPs must report defects and adverse events and take other measures described in 21 CFR Part 1003. Manufacturers of PSAPs must also comply with the requirements to repurchase, repair, or replace electronic products required under 21 CFR Part 1004.
Doing some research I found an interesting unbiased medical opinion by Mark Ross, Ph.D. about personal sound amplifiers "The important question to ask is whether personal sound amplification products can actually improve the hearing performance of people with hearing loss (ignoring the marketing deception that they are designed for normally hearing people). Since the personal sound amplification devices do amplify sound, some degree of hearing help may be superficially apparent, at least in some optimal acoustical situations. But the important question to ask is how well do these devices amplify sound? Is their quality comparable to conventional hearing aids. The answer is, to a certain extent, probably yes. And to be fair, many of the consumer comments posted on some PCAP internet sites are basically positive. But then, compared to no hearing device at all, it doesn't take much sound amplification for someone to hear a bit better."
Activeforever carries a number of quality personal sound amplifiers
Walker's Game Ear Digital BTE The Walker's Game Ear Digital BTE processes the sound coming into the device digitally, thus giving the user the clearest sound signal possible with virtually no distortion. Walker's Digital Game Ear has an amazing 50-52 dB of power, making it the most powerful sound amplification/enhancement device available today. The Walker's Digital Game Ear BTE uses an advanced Sound Activated Compression (SAC) circuit that compresses loud sounds like muzzle blasts instantaneously to safe levels. The sound-tube earplug included with each unit provides superior sound amplification with a Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) of 29 dB.
Walkers Game Ear Digital Hybrid EX The Digital Digital Hybrid EX provides users the ability to make this device customizable to their specific needs. For the most natural sound, there are 16 automatic band graphic equalizers and a variety of 6 digital channels. More features include a listening program with 4 options: general, crowds, music/theater, and nature, a noise reduction rating of 22dB when the included solid foam plugs are used, as well as an open fit design so users may feel comfortable no matter where they go. By using highly advanced technology, these digital ears present high definition sound quality and speech clarity in conjunction with superior protection. Purchase the Walker's Game Ear Digital Hybrid EX today from Active Forever!
ADDvox 7 Portable Voice Speech Amplifier A remarkable vocal audio amplification device, the ADDvox 7 Portable Speech Amplifier allows people who suffer from limited vocal volume, such as patients recovering from Laryngectomy and Tracheostomy, to be heard clearly and without straining. The ADDvox 7 works much like a personal PA system, broadcasting the user's voice outwards from the built in 7 Watt speaker.