Our experts evaluated the best hearing aids for single-sided hearing loss and narrowed down the choices to their top picks.
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Unilateral hearing loss (UHL) is a condition where you experience hearing loss in one ear and normal hearing in the other. UHL affects an estimated 7.2 percent of adult Americans, but only a small percentage wear hearing aids. For many with UHL, wearing one — or even two — hearing aids1 can help you hear better. Below, we’ll take a look at the best hearing aids for single-sided hearing loss and their impressive features. We’ll also explore unilateral hearing loss and the types of hearing aids that can help.
Best Hearing Aids for Single-Sided Hearing Loss
Jabra Enhance hearing aids cost $1,195 to $1,995 per pair. That may be more than what you’d pay for budget brands like Otofonix, but considering their advanced technology and features, Jabra Enhance hearing aids are quite affordable. The purchase price also includes three-year loss and damage protection and warranty, three years of follow-up care with the Jabra Enhance audiology team, and a free mobile app. Plus, you can try Jabra Enhance for 100 days risk-free.
Jabra Enhance’s line of hearing aids includes rechargeable and battery-powered models. They’re designed to be worn in pairs, but you could wear a single hearing aid if desired. Or you could wear both to enjoy the benefit of Bluetooth streaming from your Android smartphone or iPhone to both ears. Learn more about this direct-to-consumer brand in our 2023 Jabra Enhance hearing aid review.
FYI: e named Jabra Enhance as one of the best hearing aid providers in 2023!
MDHearing’s prices are transparent. The cost of a single hearing aid ranges from $499.99 to $799.99, but MDHearing often runs promotions that make it cheaper to buy a complete pair! Buying a pair would not only save you money, but also give you the option of wearing two hearing aids or simply having a backup. While these hearing aids aren’t the fanciest, they’re still thousands of dollars cheaper than the top brands.
MDHearing doesn’t limit your choices if you’re in the market for a single hearing aid. Instead, you can purchase one or two of any of MDHearing’s hearing solutions. Features like noise reduction, feedback cancellation, independent volume adjustments, and the ability to choose the battery type make MDHearing a smart solution for many seniors with single-sided hearing loss. Learn more about MDHearing in this year’s MDHearing review.
Eargo delivers advanced hearing aid technology at prices that range from $1,450 to $2,950 per pair. While that may seem pricey, Eargo is still more affordable than many of the comparable in-office-only providers like Phonak or Starkey. Eargo also offers financing starting at $67 per month.
Wearing a pair of Eargo hearing aids can help you manage tinnitus, even if you have hearing loss in one ear only. You’ll also find that it’s hard to beat the discretion and comfort of completely-in-canal devices like Eargo’s. Of course, if you want to buy only one hearing aid, you’ll need to look elsewhere. Learn more about Eargo’s offerings in our latest Eargo review.
Otofonix hearing aids are inexpensive, which is welcome news to seniors on a budget. The Otofonix Elite costs $490 for a single hearing aid. Otofonix also sells a more bare-bones model if you’re looking for something even more affordable. The Otofonix Apex costs $248 per ear. It may not have the bells and whistles of the other brands, but it does offer the core features at an accessible price. Otofonix also runs frequent sales that bring down the cost of their inexpensive hearing aids even more.
FYI: Otofonix landed a spot on our list of the best cheap hearing aid providers in 2023, thanks to budget-friendly prices and frequent sales.
Older adults who want a single hearing aid at an affordable price should look no further than Otofonix. The Otonofix Elite and Apex deliver a 35dB gain, making them a good option for seniors with mild hearing loss. Head on over to our Otofonix review to learn more.
Phonak Lyric is available only on a subscription basis through an audiologist or hearing specialist. A subscription lasts for one year, covering all replacement devices and services. How much you’ll pay for Lyric, or any Phonak device, varies by location. Expect to pay more than you would for direct-to-consumer brands like MDHearing or Eargo.
Lyric delivers natural sound while letting you use headphones, wear glasses, and wear helmets. While Lyric is safe for wearing in the shower, it’s not meant to be submerged in water. So, if you enjoy swimming, you’ll want to consider a different hearing device. Read our Phonak hearing aid review to see which other models this provider offers.
Signia doesn’t advertise its prices online. Visit an audiologist or local hearing aid specialist to learn about the cost of the Signia device that best meets your needs.
Signia’s CROS Silk X accessory and Silk X hearing aid offer comfort and flexibility to seniors with unaidable unilateral hearing loss or single-sided deafness. The device sits in the ear canal, so you can use your phone as you normally would and wear over-ear headphones. You can even control Silk X with the Signia app. To see what else Signia has to offer, read our latest Signia review.
Choosing the right hearing aid is hard, and it can be overwhelming if it’s your first time shopping for one. To help you decide, we’ve compiled a list of the best hearing aids for single-sided hearing loss. We evaluated providers based on criteria like cost, advanced features, variety of models, reputation, and ease of use.
UHL occurs when an individual has hearing loss in one ear and normal hearing in the other. When there’s nonfunctional hearing in one ear, it’s also called single-sided deafness. Single-sided deafness affects an estimated 60,000 Americans each year5.
Many people living with unilateral hearing loss simply rely on their “good” ear for listening. However, some choose a hearing solution, such as the following:
CROS hearing aids are for older adults who have near-normal hearing in one ear and hearing loss in the other. CROS hearing aids consist of a transmitter with a microphone that you wear on your ear with hearing loss and a receiver with a speaker that you wear on your better ear. The transmitter picks up sounds on one side and delivers the sounds to your other ear.
CROS hearing aids make it easy to hear conversations taking place on your poorer side. They also help you pick up more environmental sounds, which can improve safety and awareness.
BiCROS hearing aids are another option if you have single-sided deafness. They work similarly to CROS hearing aids, but are for individuals who experience hearing loss in their better ear too. A BiCROS hearing aid will amplify sounds in your better ear as well as transmit sounds from your deaf ear to your better ear. Both sides have a microphone, and the sounds get sent to the receiver in the better ear.
Hearing aids may help individuals with single-sided deafness, but it depends on the severity of the unilateral hearing loss1. An audiologist can help determine what type of assistive hearing device, if any, could help you to hear better.
If you have hearing loss in one ear and normal hearing in the other ear, wearing one hearing aid is sufficient4. However, most individuals with age-related hearing loss experience hearing loss in both ears, even if it’s of varying severities. Research suggests that those individuals are more satisfied when they wear two hearing aids.
The right solution for single-sided hearing loss depends on the severity of the loss. If you have nonfunctional hearing in one ear, CROS or BiCROS devices can be effective. Regular hearing aids may be sufficient for mild to severe single-sided hearing loss.
No. Hearing aids cannot cure hearing loss; however, wearing hearing aids can help you hear better.
Since graduating from Harvard with an honors degree in Statistics, Jeff has been creating content in print, online, and on television. Much of his work has been dedicated to informing seniors on how to live better lives. As Editor-in-Chief of the personal… Learn More About Jeff Hoyt
Cleveland Clinic. (2022). Unilateral Hearing Loss (Single-Sided Deafness)
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Tinnitus
Eargo. (2022). IT’S OUR HONOR TO SERVE THOSE WHO SERVE
Harvard Health Publishing. (2019). One hearing aid or two?
The Hearing Journal. (2015). One hearing aid or two?