Would like some advice on hearing aid selection for my high frequency loss. I had a work related noise exposure several years back that caused some hearing loss along with tinnitus. ( I am 46 and have worked as a machinist since I was 18). I still go in and out of machine shops in my new job, sales, and now see that I need hearing aids on a daily basis. I have a real need for hearing aids that will allow me to hear my customers on the shop floor, (lots of machine running) so what do I need to look for in hearing aids for the background noise? I am really interested in the Widex Clear 330 Fusion for the Zen option as my tinnitus is pretty loud at times. I have demo’d the Resound Future and Bernafon Chronos at my Costco, and couldn’t believe the difference that the Futures made in my hearing, I did not like the Chronos near as much as the Futures however. Again, I have a fairly bad case of tinnitus, so please keep this in mind. I appreciate any and all comments, this forum has been such a wealth of information!
I’m going to be blunt here: you are 46 … do you want to have any hearing when you are 65?
You need ear protection on the shop floor not hearing aids!
If you have a sloping HF loss you are lucky … but many shop floor workers have an L-shaped loss … almost perfect low frequency hearing but ZERO high frequency hearing above say 2KHZ. You don’t want this loss to creep down toward 1KHZ!
Also, hearing loss is NOT linear over time : it goes OK =>slight problem =>bad problem => SERIOUS TROUBLE
You want to avoid reaching that last step … and continued exposure to shop floor noise isn’t the way to go … with or without hearing aids.
You really want heavy duty electronic ear defenders with an in-built hearing aid function … but I don’t know of any such combination product. Also, they would close-down in the presence of major background noise, thus blocking some conversations!
Maybe it’s now time to get a Head Office management role?!
I agree with the post above.
Your hearing loss has been caused by exposure to excessive noise and you are still putting your self in these noisy environments.
The damage caused is irreversible and you are risking making it worse if you don’t use protection.
If you need a hearing aid in normal volume situations that is fair enough but your employer shouldn’t be putting you in these environments unprotected. In fact they are breaking the law in doing so. This is irispective if its the same job or not that caused the initial hearing loss
While I totally agree with EnglishDispenser’s comments, you need some type of working solution. Afterall, it isn’t easy to get work these days.
A hearing aid that seals your ear canals entirely (not open fit) can potentially be made to function like an ear protector, that would serve to protect you from noise, while still providing you benefit in speech comprehension. This however is not a common practice, and really requires someone who understands what the machine shop actually sounds like.
Shop around and discuss your needs with a few professionals and try some devices that have been set up for what you need.
Hearing aids in the shop aren’t going to happen. I had a different set of earplugs made that have a filter so I can hear someone talking, but it blocks out the louder sounds (especially the high frequency ones).
I have a small case for my hearing aids, so it looks like the procedure will be–enter machine shop, if noise is a factor, hearing aids come out and ear plugs go in.
My customers so far have been understanding of my condition, not all, but most.
Can you change the way you do business a little? Why are you trying to talk to customers on a noisy shop floor? Can’t be comfortable for them either.
I sell tooling to machine shops for CNC machines. I changed jobs 8 months ago to sales after spending 28 years on the shop floor (hence the hearing loss). I thought getting out of the constant noise all day, every day would be better as I spend a lot of time driving and in the office as opposed to being on the shop floor. However, the down side is that I used to put my earplugs in to start the day, and only took them out when I left. Now I don’t always have them in, especially when meeting a new customer and getting a tour of the facility. So it’s hard to be prepared for the extremely loud sounds in these situations, hence the new style of ear plug with the filter.
My search now is for a hearing aid that works well for me Outside the shop, wearing them inside the shop just isn’t going to happen. Although I know of one machinist that does!