PISCATAWAY, NJ—A survey of 500 hearing aid wearers, conducted by Siemens Hearing Instruments, Inc., showed that many of them want more robust products that can better hold up during swimming and other activities that they want to enjoy without giving up their ability to communicate.
According to the study, hearing-impaired Americans want to lead a more vibrant daily life, but feel restricted by their hearing devices.
The Siemens survey, which was released last week, found that for fear of water damage to their hearing aids, wearers refrain from activities they would otherwise enjoy, such as swimming, lounging in the pool, or soaking in a hot tub. A third of respondents state that wearing their hearing device on a day with adverse weather conditions directly affects their routine.
Many hearing aid wearers avoid wearing hearing aids when doing activities, such as like woodworking, farming, and construction, that might expose them to dust or dirt.
About 53% of respondents expressed interest in sturdier hearing aids, better capable of handling a broader range of environmental situations. When asked about specific hearing aid attributes, more than 70% of respondents expressed interest in a waterproof device, with 63% and 60%, respectively, interested in shock-resistant and dustproof qualities.
Siemens released the survey results in conjunction with the introduction of Aquaris (www.usa.siemens.com/aquaris), which it describes as “the first truly waterproof, dustproof, and shock-resistant hearing aid.”Infographic-SiemensHearing-FINAL
According to the company, the new hearing aid’s housing is constructed from a single piece and features watertight seals and membranes. As a result, Siemens says, Aquaris can be submerged in water up to 3 feet for 30 minutes without damage to the instrument.