Oticon Real Hearing Aids and Listening in Noise
The greatest difficulty reported by people with hearing loss is when they are trying to hear conversations in noisy environments. This difficulty will often lead people to investigate hearing aids as it becomes frustrating not being able to hear friends and family in loud environments such as restaurants, bars, and cafes. Unfortunately, in the past, hearing aids also really struggle in this environment as it is hard for a hearing aid to determine what is important speech to amplify. The “noise” in these environments is often other people talking, therefore, the hearing aid needs to know which people you want to hear talking and which people you want to tune out. This environment typically leads to hearing aids making every person louder, creating an uncomfortable listening situation for the hearing aid wearer.
That was before Oticon introduced their Polaris R™ and RealSound Technology™ in their new Oticon Real hearing aids. The new platform uses Deep Neural Networks that were trained by over 12 million sounds to help identify which sounds are important like speech, and which sounds are not important, like noise. Simply, this means the technology identifies which sounds are important by using characteristics of sounds that it has heard before. Oticon strives to give your brain access to the full sound scene to support your brain in working more efficiently. These features have learnt to recognise all different sounds and how they should ideally sound, meaning a person with hearing loss can experience real sounds of life.
Through Oticon’s RealSound Technology, there are also additional features to help you to hear in noise. These include Sudden Sound Stabiliser as well as wind and handling stabiliser. The sudden sound stabiliser controls sudden loud sounds which are not important for speech understanding such as a dog barking loudly or someone typing on their keyboard at work. This is called transient noise reduction as sudden sounds are made less uncomfortable without risking losing speech intelligibility. A sudden sound stabiliser is particularly helpful for people with hearing loss who have aversions to sudden loud sounds or sensitivities such as hyperacusis.
The wind and handling stabiliser has the incredible ability to reduce the annoying noise of wind being amplified in your ears. This impressive technology will also reduce the noise of anything touching your hearing aids like putting glasses on or your hair touching the microphones of the device. If you are already wearing hearing aids, you know how annoying and distracting these sounds can be when you are trying to have a conversation. These features help speech to still be understandable whilst also making noise around you more comfortable.
Lastly, the Oticon Real hearing aids have even included a spatial noise management feature which has the same function as binaural squelch. What all this means is that the brain typically identifies which one of your ears is hearing more clearly when you are in an environment with background noise. Your brain will focus in on that ear and ignore the other ear. So, if you were in a restaurant and someone was talking to you from your right side, their voice would be easiest to hear from your right ear and the noise of the restaurant would be loudest in your left ear. Your brain would focus more on your right ear, making it easier to hear conversation. Now, Oticon Real hearing aids can do this too through this new feature.
These new features in the Oticon Real hearing aids focus on achieving a concept of “conversation success” In group settings and in one-on-one conversations regardless of what environment you are in. These features aim to help individuals with hearing loss to listen easily and find conversations less taxing, especially in noisy environments.
At Knox Audiology, we continue to keep up to date with the very latest in hearing aid advancements. We take pride in our team of university qualified and experienced audiologists, who are committed to providing trusted, friendly, and professional hearing services, catering to all your unique hearing needs.