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Beltone Blog: Hearing Aids Articles & Information

Hearing Amplifier vs. Hearing Aid: What’s the Difference, Anyways?

While reading a magazine or scrolling Facebook, you may have come across an advertisement for a “hearing amplifier.” What is it? And what’s the difference between a hearing amplifier and a hearing aid?

Don’t worry, we have the answers. Keep reading to find out more.

Posted 06-02-2016 by Amy Duvall

Hearing loss can be a frustrating and isolating experience, making it difficult to communicate with loved ones and participate in daily activities. When it comes to addressing hearing loss, you may feel confused about the difference between a hearing amplifier and a hearing aid. Both devices amplify sound, but there are key differences between the two that are important to understand.

Hearing amplifiers, aka PSAPs

A hearing amplifier, also known as a personal sound amplification product (PSAP), is a device designed to amplify sounds in specific situations, such as in a noisy environment or when watching television. They're not intended to be used as a long-term solution for hearing loss, and they’re not as powerful nor sophisticated as real hearing aids. They’re also not regulated by the FDA, which means that they may not have undergone the same rigorous testing and quality control as hearing aids.

Hearing aids

On the other hand, hearing aids are medical devices specifically designed to help people with hearing loss. They are prescribed by a hearing care professional after a thorough hearing evaluation. They are designed to be comfortably worn all day while meeting FDA standards for quality and safety.

Hearing aids typically cost more than hearing amplifiers, but they are far more powerful and effective in actually treating hearing loss. They come in a variety of styles, such as receiver-in-ear, behind-the-ear, and customs. Hearing aids also come with advanced features such as noise reduction, directional microphones, and wireless connectivity that can greatly enhance the listening experience.

The difference is you

Aside from the above, the most important distinction between hearing amplifiers and hearing aids is that hearing aids can be adjusted to an individual's hearing needs. They can be personalized to a wearer’s specific type of hearing loss as well as their lifestyle.

If you’re suffering from hearing loss, investing in the best hearing aids can greatly improve your quality of life and provide a natural, enjoyable listening experience that allows you to hear what matters the most to you.


Think you may be experiencing hearing loss? Give us a call today at 1-800-BELTONE or book your free hearing appointment at a Beltone location.