Hearing Aid

One in six Australians suffers some sort of hearing loss, for over 60s that becomes one in two.

Robin Wood was a classic case, refusing to accept the problem but socialising became difficult. "You sit there like a dummy because you can't hear so therefore you don't participate in the conversation and you tend to withdraw."

At home, he drove his wife, Anne, crazy. "The nagging continued until it got to the point where I read an article where hearing was associated with dementia and I guess Anne really was right."

You've heard of a smart phone, well, 66 year old Robin has been fitted with a smart hearing aid which is winning international praise. "It is the world's first hearing aid which is clinically proven to outperform normal hearing." Perth audiologist, Racquel Fernandez, says hearing aids have come a long way. "Lots of comfort features, so they manage wind noise, background noise, sharp sounds, all of that is controlled to make it a more comfortable experience."

"One of the biggest challenges for people with hearing loss and hearing aids is background noise." Peter McKinnon from the manufacturer, Siemens, shows us how it works. First, we're hearing noise from four speakers, in different languages.

By using an incredibly directional microphone, the hearing aid is able to "zoom in" on the person you're talking to.

"So with this technology you go from not hearing a word basically to hearing every word." Robin Wood's new device cost seven thousand dollars, but he says it changed his life from the moment it was fitted. "I reached for my wallet and the sound of Velcro tearing apart in the back pocket just hit me."Robin says his marriage is better, he's socialising again and adjusting the settings from his phone is easy.

For a free hearing test:

www.lionshearing.com.au

For more information about the Siemens hearing aid:

www.clarityclinic.com.au