Newbie - Law Enforcement and Hearing Aids

I’ve been lurking a few weeks and I’ve got to say I’ve learned so much from reading all of these posts. By way of introduction:

31 years in law enforcement
12 years in the Air Force and Air Guard.
Ignored hearing loss for many years. I think my wife mumbles :wink:

Saw an Audi and ENT today and this is what I’m told. Mild to moderate sensorial high frequency hearing loss in both ears. I have tinnitus. 96% speech discrimination in right ear, 88% left ear.

Family complains that tv and radio are always to loud. I am constantly asking for people to repeat themselves or asking "what he say?’ I’m having trouble with the female dispatch voices, male is mostly ok.

I am going back to discuss hearing aids next week. May file a worker’s comp claim, lots of shooting and I was a rangemaster for many years.

Any advice on type of aid etc? ENT said I could get buy without them but would see improvement with.

Hope I input the info in the signature right.


if your wife seems to mumble, consider a companion mic.

i hang a mic on wife’s neck, receiver on my neck.


try an alera 3 with a mini mic ?

many good ways to do it.


Before you order a mini mic get the HA’s first and I’m going to bet you will find out your wife doesn’t mumble anymore. I don’t think you are going to experience a huge wow factor with the HA’s but you will see a subtle improvement: you won’t have to ask people to repeat themselves as often, you will hear female and children’s voices better and you may see improvement in your tinnitus.
As for HA type get one that does the most for you and you like the sound of. Don’t worry about the HA’s being visible, very few people will notice or care you have hearing aids. If you are concerned about them being seen get a BTE with RIC, they are much less noticeable than ITE’s IMO. You can also get them with Bluetooth and with a Streamer, Icom, com pilot or remote you can talk on your cell, house phone, listen to TV, stereo, etc. though your HA’s. Also, since you were in the AF for 12 years, go to the VA, you will get everything you need including batteries for free. Good luck!

Thanks for the advice. The VA has an Internet application form, which I sent in some time ago asking for an appointment. They turned me down saying I fall in to the last group of vet’s they will see because I have health insurance and my annual gross prior to retirement. They said I can appeal…

I see the Audi next week to go over options and review HA’s. I doubt I’ll jump right in. I think I should shop around a little. If I do get HA’s I want the best for my type of loss.

My insurance does cover a portion of the purchase. I am also looking at making a claim with my employer related to my years as a rangemaster.

As a rangemaster was hearing protection not an option? Just curious.

were you in Vietnam? or any other combat zone since? using the internet application is a crap shoot at best. find your local VSO office (lamost every county in the US has one) and have them submit the paperwork for you. they will be able to tell you exactly what you are entitled to. they will complete the Healthcare paperwork for you and they will also complete the paperwork for a disability rating (this will take at least a year or more)

Yes, and I always wore it. But like any firearms range, people sometimes fire weapons without advising others they are about to fire. We also had a choice between earplugs or headsets and the plugs do not give as much protection. On a given day as a rangemaster you will be on the line around 6 hours, qualifying between 40 and 60 shooters with handguns, rifles, and shotguns.


You’re lucky you have any hearing left. I was told in the 4th grade by an ENT to forget about firing guns even with hearing protection, forget about rock concerts and if I used power tools to always use ear protection. I followed his advice and kept from needing HA’s for 40 years, although my wife would say I should have gotten them 10 years earlier.

HI Sheriff,

I am also a Police Officer and a firearms instructor. I have been on the job for about 17 years. I have been a f/a for 13 years and have been shooting for 34 years. I have been visiting this site since March of this year for information due to a recent AUDI visit.

In the 1990’s I went to college and had to take a language. I was having a hard time with the labs (all audio tape). I had a hearing test then. I had severe loss in the high tone in both ears and the next tone down in my right ear. I could only hear a watch alarm if it was less than 2 feet from my ear.

Fast forward…I’m 39 years old. I claim my kids mumble, wife too (maybe selective hearing here), and the TV is at 96-100 to hear the conversation (that is out of a max of 100). I just finished three days of training in a classroom and had a difficult time hearing some of other attendees.

Last April I went to a local AUDI for a free test. I have moderate to severe hearing loss above 2k. We discussed what I was looking for as far a options and what I expected from the device. He recommended a Siemens Pure 501 or a 701. Since I am still on the job I am looking at the 701. I was told the cost would be $5000 for the 701 and $4000 for the 501. I have three kids, mortgage, car payments (just like a lot of other people) and the money is not available. The town changed insurance policies and I asked for them to consider a rider for H/A and was told no. I have placed a call to workman’s compensation for assistance. I was given some direction. The Audi I spoke with has not dealt with this angle before. I am going to re-initiate contact in order to move forward sooner than later.

I am looking at more than firearms as the culpret here. Since going to college and becoming a Police Officer I have been very religious in wearing hearing protection (the only exception was 1. discharge of a firearm in the roadway to put down an injured animal and 1. discharge of a rifle inside a house to protect myself from a dog attack.). I have been able to obtain a sound suppressor for my rifle and I have bought a set of MSA electronic muffs to wear with foam plugs. I feel most of my loss can be contributed to the two factors above, the sirens, and loud engines on crash/fire/rescue scenes.

In your case I would make an appointment with the VA. My Father was in the ARMY in Vietnam and was Artillery for his 20 year career. He lost hearing in one ear due to surgery. He has a VA supplied H/A in his other ear. Stick with the VA a long as you can.

Good Luck,


Contact your states office of rehabilitation and see if they can help. I would think that you would need to hear at a certain level to keep your job, so that is where the rehab comes in. Good luck!

Thought I would update. I filed a Worker’s Comp claim not long after I posted the first message. It’s taken several months to get through the system and get a QME Panel Dr. to do an evaluation. I have an appointment this coming Friday. Not sure what to expect, other than a hearing test and evaluation. I understand he writes a report either supporting or denying my claim.

I’ve been reading the forum daily and have gained a lot of knowledge so thanks to all of your regular posters :slight_smile:

Good Luck in your coming evaluation.

Just remember that everything you say or don’t say, and everything you’ve ever said or not said is important.

The ENT/Audi appointment went well. The ENT classified my hearing loss as work related. Just waiting for him to submit his report to County HR. One thing I’m not sure of. The Audi who conducted my hearing test is only recommending one hearing aid (for my right ear). He said the numbers on the left were a little better than my first test and he does not see any benefit for an HA at this point. He based this on a better score for word desc. I’m thinking the difference might be the fist Audi was female and I had a harder time hearing her. So… the ENT is only signing off on one HA at this time, with retests every couple of years. Not so sure this is going to work for me as I have trouble hearing my wife, daughter, and grand daughters and think two aids would be better.


Yeah…I think the one hearing aid rec was off the mark given your hearing test results. Unless you had significantly less discrimination for speech in one ear than the other (and I mean like <30%) then I always recommend 2 hearing aids.

OK, I posted my original message in July. It took some time going through the worker’s comp system, but the county has agreed to cover my hearing loss. They pay for a set of hearing aids every five years plus batteries. Any accessories are on my dime. I had my first appointment with the new Audi last week. Had to firm up some issue with the adjuster, but I should have my first set of hearing aids next week. I really like this Audi. He’s recommending Starkey Wi i110’s. I researched them and they look promising. Any comments on the Starkey’s?

you might want to read the posts on here about the Surflink Mobile… i’m not a Starkey fan but there are those who seem to like them.

Thanks Larry, been doing that. I see some good, some bad. Since this is my first go-round, I guess I’ll have a lot to learn.


Glad you got a set and not just one aid, your loss is pretty much the same on both ears.

Thanks, there was delay while the worker’s comp folks reviewed what was recommended. Audi has ordered the Starkey Wi i110’s along with suflink (as it turns out the county is paying for it all). Hoping they will be in today or tomorrow.


OK, so I picked up the Starkey Wi i110’s this afternoon and have been wearing them about 8 hours now. I don’t know if I’m one of the lucky ones, but so far no major issues. The sound is pretty natural, the fit is good, and I barley notice they are there. I got the Surflink Mobile and the Surflink Media. Both are working as advertised. A couple of minor issues. The volume on cellphone calls is a little low and I can’t change programs using the HA (it’s set up so that volume is on the left and programs are supposed to be on the right). I have a follow-up on Friday and will hopefully resolve those issues.