Phonak hearing aids: Brand and product review
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Phonak provides different hearing aids and hearing support options to suit a wide range of needs. Smartphone apps control some hearing aids, and some have convenient charging options. The hearing aids are available to purchase only through authorized retailers.
Hearing loss affects roughly 48 million people in the United States, touching everything from their emotional and physical health to their social lives and careers.
Some people with hearing issues wait an average of 7 years before seeking treatment. However, help is available to offer individuals a better quality of life.
Learning about the different hearing support options available, including Phonak hearing aids, can help people make an informed decision.
Founded in 1947, the company that would eventually become Phonak began in Switzerland. The company established a marketing presence in the United States in 1989, and technological innovation has been a crucial part of its development.
Phonak is one of nine brands owned by Sonova — a multinational corporation based in Switzerland. Senova operates in 100 different countries and is a leader in developing innovative solutions in hearing care.
The Better Business Bureau (BBB) has accredited Phonak since June 2018, and the company has a rating of A+. There are currently no reviews or complaints lodged with the BBB.
At the time of publishing this article, Trustpilot has given Phonak an overall rating of 3.3 stars out of a possible 5. They currently have three reviews, ranging from excellent to poor.
Most positive reviews of Phonak hearing aids relate to their sound quality, the ability to use rechargeable batteries, and connectivity with various mobile devices.
Less favorable reviews noted disappointment in the hearing aid quality, considering the price, and unsatisfying experiences with repairs and service.
The company’s website states that Phonak designed their hearing aids to simplify a person’s life and consistently provide exceptional hearing experiences in many circumstances.
Phonak has a smartphone app that a person can use alongside many of their hearing devices.
Here are some of their hearing aids and additional services to consider.
Please note that the writer of this article has not tried these products. All information presented is purely research-based.
Made for those with mild to profound hearing loss and powered by either rechargeable lithium-ion or zinc batteries, this hearing aid can connect directly to smartphones and televisions.
The product is compatible with the Roger microphone that the manufacturer claims can help a person hear more clearly and understand voices when they are in loud or confusing sound environments.
The Audéo Paradise is a receiver-in-the-canal (RIC) hearing aid, which means that although the hearing aid rests outside the ear, the receiver, or speaker, is inside the ear. RIC hearing aids are lightweight and discrete, but they may not be suitable for individuals with severe hearing loss.
The myPhonak app helps people personalize their hearing aid settings.
The Naída Paradise is a behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aid that may help a person hear quiet voices in quieter places. It offers personalized noise cancellation and connects via Bluetooth to devices such as televisions and smartphones.
There are two different models available for various degrees of hearing loss — mild to severe and profound. The model for those with mild to severe hearing loss uses a rechargeable lithium battery. The model for those with profound hearing loss uses zinc batteries.
With the myPhonak app, a person can connect with their hearing care providers, who can make adjustments to their Phonak hearing aids in real-time.
Made with children in mind, the Sky Link M is water- and dust-resistant, with a tamper-proof ear hook and battery door.
The company website claims this hearing aid works well alongside other treatments, such as therapies to help children build speech and language skills and learn to understand new sounds.
Suitable for individuals with moderate to profound hearing loss, this BTE hearing aid can link to a cochlear implant sound processor that a person can use if their hearing worsens.
Users can connect the hearing aid directly to smartphones and televisions via the myPhonak app,
The company’s website claims the Lyric hearing aid as the world’s only wholly invisible hearing aid.
It requires a trained medical professional to insert the device into a person’s ear canal, sitting near the eardrum. It is equipped with a powerful battery and can deliver what the company describes as exceptional sound quality, 24 hours per day, for months at a time.
Other Phonak products and services include:
- Tinnitus Balance Portfolio consists of tinnitus balance hearing aids, a noise generator, and smartphone apps. A person with tinnitus should work with their hearing care providers to fine-tune their portfolio and manage any hearing challenges that arise.
- Single-side hearing is when a person experiences hearing loss in only one ear. Hearing in the other ear may be less severe or not affected at all. In each case, Phonak hearing aids use multi-faceted technology to pick up sounds from the non-hearing ear and send it to the hearing ear. These hearing aids tend to be small and discrete, and a wireless version is available for children.
- Hearing protection devices that promote restful sleep, reduce distractions, and safeguard the ears from the potentially damaging loud sounds of workplaces, heavy equipment, live music, and hunting and shooting.
- An online hearing test with follow-up care from a hearing care professional.
- Phonak offers special services for veterans who can purchase Phonak hearing aids through the audiology department of U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) hospitals.
Phonak does not directly sell the hearing aids it manufactures. Instead, it distributes Phonak hearing aids to professional, trained hearing care providers and hearing care centers.
Individuals who have hearing problems can see one of these hearing care providers for evaluation. They have the option to order Phonak hearing aids if they feel the product matches their needs.
The cost of hearing aids can be high due to the continual advancement of audiological technologies and the services included. Phonak does not offer payment plans, as they do not sell the products directly.
A person should check with their local hearing healthcare provider to establish costs and payment options.
A person can generally access local warranties through the retailer of their hearing aids, but Phonak offers a 1–year international warranty covering the hearing device only. Warranties do not usually cover batteries, and other accessories may have separate rules.
If an individual chooses to purchase their Phonak products from an unauthorized online retailer, this will void their warranty.
Additionally, hearing aids are not covered by the warranty if they are damaged or broken due to improper use, care, handling, or chemical exposure.
Many health insurers do not provide coverage for hearing aids, but as each person’s plan benefits differ, individuals should check with their plan provider to confirm coverage.
If a person has an original Medicare plan, coverage may not be available. However, they may have a hearing benefit if they have a Medicare Advantage policy.
A wide variety of hearing products are available, and finding the right one depends on an individual’s specific circumstances.
It is an important decision because
The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) recommends people with hearing loss and their audiologist or hearing healthcare providers consider:
- the type of hearing loss
- the severity of their hearing loss
- the hearing needs to support their lifestyle
- ease of use
- financial circumstances
- maintenance and repair schedule
Phonak produces a wide variety of generally high-end hearing aids sold only through hearing care professionals.
Some insurers may help with the costs of hearing aids, but a person should check with their plan provider to confirm coverage.