Advancements in Digital Hearing Aids

Atlanta Hearing Associates' Blog.

When you think about it, digital hearing aids have only been around for about 15 years. Before that, analog hearing aids were all the rage. But advancements in technology have brought about the advent of digital capabilities. Let’s take a look back, shall we? The initial hearing aids were called ear trumpets and they came out in the 1800s. Today’s modern digital hearing aids have remote controls that allow the user to adjust various settings, and some have omnidirectional microphones to detect sound from multiple directions. You get benefits such as background noise filtration and Bluetooth connections. Digital hearing aids have the ability to remove fuzzy and loud background noise, but they can also do a whole lot more. This gives doctors the opportunity to program each device according to the wearer’s degree of hearing loss.

The First Digital Hearing Aids

The first digital hearing aids, introduced into the medical community, came out initially in 1996. They utilized DSP, which stands for digital signal processing. Ideal for digital noise reduction, DSPs provided a boost in processing speeds which improved the ability to hear as well as the range of amplification for individuals wearing the hearing aid.

Improved Connections

People who incorporate digital hearing aids benefit from increased range, digital noise reduction and higher frequency transposition. Users can even make a connection to Bluetooth and other wireless technological services to expand their ease of use.

Digital Noise Reduction (DNR)

Digital noise reduction technology surpasses that of directional microphones because it is based on the physical characteristics of noise and speech rather than the separation of space, taking into account speech modulation.


Today’s hearing aids are equipped with self-learning or regulating tendencies, which make them truly “smart” hearing aids that adjust settings like volume automatically. Using preferences set by the wearer, these devices can pre-program what you like so you never have to fiddle with the setting again. It’s these regulating tendencies that are so special.

Single Sided Deafness

Technologies like CROS devices and bone conduction devices allow the good ear to receive signals from the bad ear to improve on amplification. Prior to big advancements in digital technology, people who had single-sided deafness had to deal with the frustration of background noise and were relegated to using their “good ear” to hear conversation.

The Outlook

The outlook for digital hearing aids is superior over other types, as the technology will only continue to grow and improve. For the best in flexibility, hearing impaired individuals can count on digital hearing aids to take advantage of innovative wireless technology and microelectronics to bring about more sophisticated abilities.

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.