Best Hearing Aids in 2022

Our experts have researched 20 hearing aid companies and recommend our top picks for seniors.

hearing-aid-icon

SeniorLiving.org is compensated when you click on the provider links listed on this page. This compensation does not impact our ratings or reviews.

Although on the surface many hearing aids may look similar, they each bring unique features to fit different users’ needs and goals. Knowing the differences is critical when making the right decision in amplifying hearing loss and improving the user’s quality of life.

Best Online and Medical-Grade Hearing Aids

To help you select the best hearing aid for your needs, budget, and lifestyle, we evaluated criteria including price, design, technology, add-on features, and customer support. As you explore hearing aid options, take time to consider how the hearing aid can improve your hearing health and how to choose the right device for your needs. We’ve separated the list of our top picks into two categories: hearing aids that can be purchased online and medical-grade hearing aids that are typically fit and bought in office at a hearing clinic. Read on for an in-depth look at the hearing aids that came out on top and what they have to offer.

Did You Know: There are two different types of hearing aids: those that can be purchased online and those that are medical-grade and must be purchased in office. It’s important to understand the differences between the two, so you can find the device that’s right for your needs and level of hearing loss. Jump down to our guide to buying hearing aids online vs. in person to learn more.

Best Hearing Aid Brands

Hearing Aid Company Lively MDHearingAid Otofonix Eargo Lexie Signia Starkey Widex ReSound Oticon Phonak
Hearing loss Mild to Moderate Mild to Moderate Mild to Moderate Mild to Moderate Mild to Moderate Mild to Profound Mild to Profound Mild to Severe Mild to Profound Mild to Profound Mild to Profound
Price $1,195 to $1,595 per pair $399.99 to $799.99 per device $248 per device to $1590 per pair $1,500 to $2,950 per pair $799 per pair $1000 to $3500 per device $1000 to $4000 per device $1000 to $3500 per device $1000 to $3500 per device $1000 to $3500 per device $1000 to $3500 per device
Purchasing options Online Online Online Online Online In-office, insurance In-office, insurance In-office, insurance In-office, insurance In-office, insurance In-office, insurance
Financing Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes By office By office By office By office By office By office
STD Warranty 3 years 90 days 1 year 1 year 1 year 1 year 1 year 1 year 1 year 1 year 1 year
Max Warranty 3 years 90 days 1 year 2 year 1 year 3 years 3 years 3 years 3 years 3 years 3 years
Return Option 100 Days 45 Days 45 Days 45 Days 45 days 45-90 Days 45-90 Days 45-90 Days 45-90 Days 45-90 Days 45-90 Days
Rechargeable Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Zinc Air Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Self Test Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Remote Support Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
TV Streamer Yes No No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
iOS App Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Android App Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Tinnitus Features Yes No No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes

Choosing the Right Hearing Aid for Your Needs

With so many fantastic hearing aid options, it can feel overwhelming to make a final choice. In my opinion, it’s best to make a decision based on the device that will address most, if not all, of your hearing health goals.

Let’s take a look at the most common needs for those with hearing loss. Harvard Health recommends considering the nature of your hearing loss, its cause, and its severity.4 I’ll guide you through some of the best hearing aid options that match each goal in the chart below.

I want to Best hearing aid option
Hear better in background noise and social settings

Almost all hearing aids will use some form of noise management or have directional microphones to help decrease background noise.

Best online option: MDHearingAid

Best in-office option: Oticon

Enhance speech understanding

Once amplified appropriately, speech understanding should improve with all hearing aids. If it does not, the hearing loss may be more central than neural (this will not improve with traditional hearing aids).

Best online option: Eargo

Best in-office option: Phonak

Hear soft voices

All hearing aids now have digital processing to help enhance soft sounds. To ensure proper amplification, it’s best to do some form of formal verification, like real ear measures or sound field testing from an audiologist.

Best online option: Otofonix

Best in-office option: Phonak

Improve tinnitus

Tinnitus and hearing loss often go hand in hand. Several hearing aids include tinnitus management software or tinnitus noise therapy signals.

Best online option: Lively

Best in-office options: Widex and Signia

Enjoy music again

Hearing aids with a sound adjust feature or intelligent sound automation combat music distortion and create an enjoyable listening experience.

Best online option: Eargo

Best in-office option: Widex

Reduce waste with rechargeable batteries

Constantly replacing hearing aid batteries can be costly. Rechargeable hearing aids provide all-day use, with some aids lasting up to 30 hours.

Best online option: Lively

Best in-office option: ReSound

Have a cosmetic appeal

CIC custom hearing aids deliver discreet hearing support.

Best online option: Eargo invisible CIC

Best in-office option: Starkey CIC

Get a great value for investment

Key features in value for hearing aids include affordability, ease of selection, warranty, and professional support.

Best online option: Lexie

Best in-office option: Phonak

Receive continuous hearing loss support

All hearing aid manufacturers have some form of support. These manufacturers provide the best ongoing in-office and online support:

Best online option: Lively

Best in-office option: Signia

Benefit from Bluetooth connectivity and an app for adjustments

All receiver-in-the-ear (RITE) options and many in-the-ear devices (except Eargo) have Bluetooth direct audio streaming.

A number of hearing aids also include a remote adjustment feature connecting users with their audiologist through a smartphone app.

Best online option: Otofonix

Best in-office option: ReSound

Pro Tip: Our hearing aid buyer’s guide provides several hearing aid tools and resources so that you can make an educated purchase.

Want more help choosing hearing aids? Watch the video below with audiologist Brad Ingrao for more tips.

Hearing Tests

As you begin shopping for a hearing aid, you’ll most likely complete a Client Oriented Scale of Improvement (COSI). The COSI is a standardized questionnaire created by the National Acoustic Laboratories for the hearing impaired. Clinicians use the answers to document a patient’s goals and needs, and measure improvements in hearing ability. You’ll rank hearing challenges like conversations in groups, hearing the phone ring from another room, and listening to the television or radio at normal volume.

If you’re purchasing from an online hearing aid retailer, many companies include a hearing test on their website. You’ll answer a few questions (similar to the COSI questionnaire) and then plug your headphones into your computer to take the audio portion of the test. The entire process takes approximately five minutes, and your results help determine your personalized hearing needs.

Purchasing Options

Online Hearing Aids

Without a doubt, purchasing hearing aids online is convenient. With a few keystrokes, online shoppers can explore hearing aid brands, benefits, and pricing — all from the comfort of their homes. And there’s no hassle in scheduling (and going to) doctor’s appointments.

However, purchasing hearing aids online isn’t for everyone. These models are best for individuals with mild-to-moderate hearing loss. And it’s important to keep in mind that online hearing tests are not medical tests. This means you’re waiving medical clearance and assuming the risk of undiagnosed ear disease when you purchase hearing aids online.

What We Like About Online Hearing Aids

  • Easy to compare hearing aid brands, models, and costs
  • Convenient shopping experience
  • Pricing tends to be more economical than in-office hearing aids
  • Multiple ways to contact customer support
  • No in-person appointments needed

Things to Keep in Mind About Online Hearing Aids

  • No in-person assistance
  • No pre-purchase hearing health examination
  • Not suitable for severe or profound hearing loss
  • Lack of verification and validation measures, which can result in an improper fitting
  • Problems with self-tuning
  • Serious hearing loss conditions or diseases cannot be identified online
  • Website research and navigation not ideal for tech-challenged seniors
  • Ear pieces are not customized; generic fits may not work well for all patients

In-Office Hearing Aids

Purchasing medical-grade hearing aids from an in-office professional delivers a higher level of personalized medical care and hearing health support. This is especially critical for individuals who have severe-to-profound hearing loss, those who are not tech-savvy, and children.

As mentioned previously, most online hearing aid company websites include a hearing test. While it helps identify hearing loss levels, it’s not a medically administered test. Visiting an audiologist in the office ensures you receive an accurate evaluation. This includes hearing tests like the tympanometry test (to check how your eardrum moves), acoustic reflex measures (to test how well your ears respond to loud sounds), and the pure-tone test (to test how you react to the pitch and loudness of tones).

If the audiologist decides you need a hearing aid, you’ll receive a proper fitting and any undiagnosed ear conditions will be detected. However, an in-person hearing aid purchase usually comes with a heftier price tag and quite a few appointments with an audiologist.

What We Like About In-Office Hearing Aids

  • Traditional hearing health evaluation and testing
  • Serious hearing diseases can be identified
  • In-person device training and support
  • Personalized service with a dedicated audiologist
  • Real ear measurements for hearing aid fitting
  • Insurance may provide partial coverage

Things to Keep in Mind About In-Office Hearing Aids

  • Appointment scheduling delays and multiple visits
  • Higher pricing than online hearing aids
  • Limited hearing aid choices and brands
  • No online purchasing

Testing and Fine-Tuning Your New Hearing Aids

Once you’ve chosen your hearing aids, an essential step in the hearing rehabilitation process is getting comfortable with them. Think of your hearing aids like a brand-new car with all the bells and whistles. It takes time to get used to a new car’s features and find that sweet spot for your rearview and side mirrors. Hearing aids are no different! Be patient with yourself as you learn how to use the hearing aid interface, adjust the volume settings, and put the aids in and take them out.

Here are my top five tips for maximizing your success with your hearing aids:

  1. Understand how the hearing aid functions and how to clean and maintain the device properly. This ensures that the microphones and receivers don’t get clogged and are providing stable, consistent amplification.
  2. Evaluate whether the hearing aid meets your hearing goals. Consider how much amplification is being provided relative to your hearing loss. It also helps to keep a journal, noting progress toward your hearing goals.
  3. Wear your hearing aids consistently during all waking hours, as every moment is an opportunity for hearing and listening. If you’re not ready initially for full-time wear, build up to that goal gradually.
  4. Establish a hearing rehabilitation program. Ideally, this is done with a hearing health professional, but it can also be done online with programs like LACE and Amptify. If you’re a fan of audiobooks, they’re a great way to test your speech comprehension. Take 10 to 15 minutes each day to test your hearing without any visual cues.
  5. Assess your success with your hearing aids regularly. Be sure to schedule an annual hearing loss checkup, just like you do with your other health practitioners.

Frequently Asked Questions About Hearing Aids

  • Does Medicare cover hearing aids?

    No, Medicare doesn’t cover hearing aids. Annual hearing tests and other advanced tests will be covered only if they are medically necessary. Some Medicare Advantage Plans (Part C) offer extra benefits that Original Medicare doesn’t cover, like vision, hearing, and dental.5

  • How much do hearing aids cost?

    Prices for hearing aids vary dramatically by provider and technology level. The approximate range per pair is $800 to $8,000.

  • How do I choose the best hearing aids?

    Your lifestyle, severity of hearing loss, dexterity, tech-savviness, and budget are key factors to consider.

  • How do I clean hearing aids?

    Our cleaning guide for hearing aids walks you through how often you should clean hearing aids and the tools needed to care for your devices.

  • How long do hearing aids last?

    The average lifespan of a hearing aid is five to six years. However, many hearing aids last much longer with proper care and repairs.6 Some individuals may choose to purchase new hearing aids, even though their current ones still work, due to advances in technology.

Written By

Dr. Ruth Reisman

Audiologist

Ruth Reisman, AuD MBA, is a licensed audiologist and hearing aid dispenser in New York state and is certified by the American Speech and Hearing Association. After serving as an audiologist in the New York downstate hospital system, Dr. Reisman led the… Learn More About Dr. Ruth Reisman

Citations
  1. American Tinnitus Association. (2022). Hearing Aids.

  2. American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. (2019). Hearing Loss and the Increased Risk of Falls.

  3. National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine. (2020). Music Therapy in the Treatment of Dementia: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.

  4. Harvard Health. (2014). 7 tips for buying a hearing aid.

  5. Medicare.gov. (2022). Hearing aids.

  6. Johns Hopkins Medicine. (2022). Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery.