Mild Cookie bite loss is worth hearing aid?

There is a part of me that feels like Costco is just trying to make a sale. Can as mild a case as mine be worth $$$? I am a violin teacher and the quality of sound is SUPER important to me.

I had my first audiogram done yesterday to get a baseline test. Why? Because my wife has cookie bite loss that is moderate and it made me realize that documenting my hearing at my age of 49 might be wise.

I expected normal results. I was flabbergasted at the cookie bite results.

The Costco employee asked if I would like to trial the Phillips. I said sure. I have tiny ears, and was impressed with the comfort of the open bass domes. When he programed them it sounded like a tin can echo and my voice sounded weird too. Not loud, but distorted. I walked around and was just annoyed. When I came back, he said he wanted to try another setting. Then it seemed like they were not even turned on. My voice sounded normal, but walking around the store I was not convinced I was hearing anything better.

When I got home, my wife suggested I try them for 90 days, since there is no risk.

When I did research last night, normal hearing was defined as 0-25db on the audiograms I saw on legit audiologist sites. The Costco audiogram sheet said mild started at 20, and this guy said 18. Hmmm.

So I’m wondering if anyone here has as mild a cookie bite shape, or if you know others who do and what you think. Maybe I need a different technician with adjustments? I just feel not confident that I’m being sold HA without reason.

Then I read that many cookie bite loss is discovered later and those having it are deniers. It made me laugh. I can hear and participate in a conversation across the house. If being out at a restaurant helped me hear better, it might be worth it.

I read about tinnitus last night too. I thought everyone heard a high pitch all the time, very quietly. Maybe not?

Thanks for your thoughts.

Don’t need to go with this. You go by how much you’re struggling. Some people have worse hearing than you but don’t feel the need to get hearing aids.

Btw, I’ve been told for 30 years that normal hearing is up to 20 dB but then some audiograms, profound starts at 80 dB where I’ve only seen it start at 90 dB so I’d say there’s no set rules!!


As someone who has a similar loss, I have found hearing aids to maybe be one of the best decisions made. Especially with the accessories phonak offers it helps me participate in classes or meetings, I feel like I’m able to be more social with peers and i didn’t realize how much I was missing before.


I would expect someone your age to show some hearing loss.

If you are right handed, I would suspect playing the violin over all these years is why your right ear hearing is worse than your left.

Unless the people around you are making comments about your hearing, I don’t think you need hearing aids at this time to understand speech.

You might get some benefit with your music, however, the musicians that post here seem to really have to do a lot of fine tuning to their hearing aids, and I’m not sure that the Phillips software is the best one to allow this fine tuning.

As far as the Costco hearing aid fitter, they don’t work on commission and have no real reason to push you into buying a hearing aid. I suspect you mentioned that your hearing was very, very important to you and the hearing aid fitter was just trying to help.

Anyhow, you can continue with your trial or return the hearing aids if you don’t get any benefit and just have you hearing tested every two years.

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I have had mixed results with hearing aids and playing music (mandolin) both solo and in a group setting. After a fair amount of tweakery with settings, I got to a point where it was ok. And then just took my HAs out to play music. Which is fine for a bit of a noodle in the kitchen while dinner cooks but less helpful playing in a group or attending a workshop where people want to talk to you…in which case I’ll use my hearing aids throughout.

Currently I use KS10 hearing aids (aka Phonak’s P90).

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I’m wondering if the social circumstances might be where I notice it most. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

I don’t have cookie bite loss but do have a mild loss. I’ve been told that for mild loss it’s often on a personal basis as to whether they are worth it.

I had to push to get access to a trial that will start next month so I’m interested in seeing the difference they make. I’m hopeful they help as I have a hard time understanding often.

Thank you for sharing your journey. Do you have tinnitus? I made an appointment to bring my violin to see how that sounds. I also learned this week, that the apple AirPods2 have a place that you can enter your audiogram, which gives a bit of an in ear monitor experience when on the phone or listening to anything through the phone.

I’m a cookie biter with mild to moderate loss. I’m also a teacher and a music-lover, although I don’t teach music. I would encourage you to try out several brands of HAs before deciding. I don’t have a Costco near me, so I can’t say anything about Philips. But there are marked differences in sound quality among the different manufacturers. Of the three I tried, I would say that Widex sounded the most natural for both music and speech, Oticon sounded the least natural overall to my ears, and Phonak helped the most with speech recognition, which is my biggest problem. Phonak also had the tech features I wanted, so that’s what I have, but if I could afford a second pair, I’d get Widex. Please don’t rule out HAs based on one trial. As another poster wrote, you might not know what you’re missing! Also, cookie bite loss is complicated and finding solutions is a process. A great audiologist, patience, and a sense of humor are critical. Keep trying and good luck!

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PS-I also have tinnitus. It worsens whenever the atmospheric pressure rises. YMMV.

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Thank you for your time and sharing your thoughts. Is there anything with the tinnitus that you do? I will consider your brand suggestions. Thank you!

I use an app — Widex Zen tinnitus or Beltone Calmer — to play tinnitus-masking sounds, like white noise or chimes, and stream the sound right to my HAs. Lots of free apps will do the job! I think some phones, like iphones, even have white noise apps built in.

Thank you for explaining! So it is another constant sound instead of what you already hear. I think what I hear is transparent enough that I cam hear through it. Putting in another sound would make it less so, for me. I’m glad you found something that works for you.

I was in denial for 40 years because I could hear just fine, so I thought. I heard my husband’s watch beep every hour in the night. I buried in his socks in the top drawer, closed the drawer, closed the door of the closet the dresser was in, and still could hear it. So when I couldn’t understand what people were saying I figured it couldn’t be a hearing loss because I had perfect hearing. I knew nothing about hearing loss differing at different frequencies.
I was driving my parents to the audiologist so one day I decided to have my hearing tested while I was there. I had a cookie bite audiogram. I guess that explains why people with a cookie bite are in denial.
The loss was probably from scarlet fever as a child, and was mild to moderate at the level of the voice. Now my age-related loss has reached the level of severe. Now I need to work with an audiologist, but when I was in the moderate range I used Costco. Most of their hearing aid departments are staffed by hearing instrument specialists rather than audiologists. I have never known of any who care about selling you hearing aids. They are all on salary and no one tracks their sales. There are no commissions. Costco’s main reason for providing hearing aids is to increase membership. That’s why their prices are so low. Also their equipment is excellent, better than that of many audiologist offices.

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I appreciate what you are saying very much. I should have not written how I did about the Costco employee trying to sell me hearing aids. That was my own denial and shock speaking through my fingers. I know those with moderate or severe loss would say “cry me a river” and would love to swap hearing loss with me. I realize I’m speaking from an uncomfortable place of privilege. You speak true to my experience about high pitched beeping driving me absolutely crazy batty! I feel like notifications and hourly notifications should be banned. :slight_smile: I am glad I posted here to see the experience of people who have mild cookie bite loss. It seems that everyone is different, and that is what the Costco employee said. I need to figure out for myself whether with my mild loss if it is helpful to me. My wife’s moderate cookie bite loss is so clearly helped with the hearing aids, and I hear SO much better than her. She agrees with you about the quality of the equipment being better at Costco than the Audiologist office she went to before we moved here. Thank you again for your time in responding.

If only there had been digital hearing aids when I had that cookie bite audiogram. Analog aids increased volume across all frequencies. The amplification of high-pitched sounds would have been intolerable for me. The big advance with digital aids was the ability to program each frequency separately. I would guess that even with a mild loss it would be preferable to wear hearing aids than not wear them. During those years when I had the cookie bite loss that couldn’t be aided, I had a lot of trouble with voices. I wasn’t able to get the amplification I needed until age-related loss took the place of the childhood loss and I no longer had good hearing of the high-pitched sounds.

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