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Overcoming Hearing Aid Stigma

hearing aids

Hearing loss is a natural part of aging for many, something present since birth, or caused by external factors such as noise or infection, but it doesn’t have to control our lives. Today’s hearing aids are small, sophisticated devices that can significantly improve your ability to connect with the world around you. Think of that tiny device as a technological marvel, a helping hand that allows you to participate fully in conversations, enjoy music and movies, and confidently navigate public spaces. At Soundwave Hearing Care in Calgary, High River and Grande Prairie, we’re passionate about helping people rediscover the joy of clear sound. However, the biggest hurdle we keep encountering is the stigma surrounding hearing aids.

Did you know that almost half (48%) of individuals with hearing impairment believe that wearing hearing aids is stigmatized? This statistic is particularly concerning because the benefits of hearing aids are undeniable. Over half (51%) of survey respondents reported improved communication with loved ones as the primary advantage. Source – Forbes

The good news is that the days of bulky, noticeable hearing aids are long gone. Today’s devices are discreet, often invisible, and packed with advanced features.


Shattering the Stigma: Why Hearing Aids Shouldn’t Hold You Back

Let’s explore some of the misconceptions about hearing aids and how they should not prevent you from enjoying the gift of clear sound:

  • Myth: Hearing aids are big and visible.
  • Reality: Modern hearing aids are stylish and comfortable. Most styles, such as in-the-canal (ITC) and completely-in-the-canal (CIC) options, fit discreetly inside the ear canal and are nearly undetectable by others. Receiver-in-the-canal (RIC) and Receiver-in-the-ear (RITE) hearing aids are tiny devices that tuck behind the ear with a small, invisible wire going into the ear that provide great hearing without being seen.
  • Myth: Hearing aids are for the elderly.
  • Reality: Hearing loss can affect anyone regardless of their age. Getting hearing aids early can significantly enhance your quality of life.
  • Myth: Hearing aids are uncomfortable.
  • Reality: Advanced technology ensures that it is comfortable to wear. Soundwave Hearing Care’s audiologists and hearing aid practioners will customize your hearing aids to fit your specific needs and preferences, ensuring that they are comfortable, and that sound quality is optimal.


Living with Untreated Hearing Loss in Canada

While cost may be a concern (56% of survey respondents cited it as a barrier), untreated hearing loss can have a much more significant impact on your finances and overall well-being. Consider the inability to hear at work, social isolation, strain on relationships, and potential safety hazards associated with being unable to hear clearly in public spaces (55% of respondents reported difficulty hearing announcements).

At Soundwave Hearing Care, the products and services we provide can be covered by many  extended health insurance providers to make hearing aids accessible. The good news is that the Alberta and Canadian governments also offers various programs to help alleviate the financial burden of hearing aids.

Government Support for Hearing Aids in Calgary

In Canada, multiple programs can help offset the cost of hearing aids, depending on your province or territory. Here’s a summary:

  • Alberta Aids for Daily Living (AADL) provides financial assistance for hearing aids of all ages, among other benefits. They provide funding children and seniors and some lower-income adults to help purchase, replace, and repair hearing aids.
  • Workers’ Compensation Board (Alberta) assists workers in the region with workplace occupational health and safety information regarding hearing health.. At Soundwave Heairng Care, in addition to Alberta, we work with most provincial and territorial government workers’ hearing loss programs to be able to provide hearing aids at no cost for eligible workers with hearing loss.
  • The Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC) Treatment Benefits program covers various services and benefits to eligible military veterans and retired members of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), including hearing aids and tinnitus management.
  • The Non-insured health benefits for First Nations and (NIHB) program provides hearing care products and services for for First Nations and Inuk individuals.

By exploring these government programs alongside your insurance, we can help make hearing aids a more accessible solution for Albertans experiencing hearing loss.

Visit our Audiologists in Calgary

Our team of dedicated audiologists and hearing aid practitioners is here to guide you through the entire process, from the initial consultation to ongoing support. We believe that everyone deserves to experience the joy of clear sound. Don’t let stigma hold you back. Contact Soundwave Hearing Care today and take the first step towards a world of richer sound experiences.


All the blogs are reviewed and edited by our clinic's lead audiologist, Dr. Anne Wooliams. Dr. Woolliams is an experienced audiologist specialized in pediatric audiology, auditory processing, and tinnitus/sound sensitivity therapy. She is dedicated to providing top-notch hearing care and helping her clients improve their language and communication abilities. Dr. Woolliams' expertise in literature and linguistics, combined with her passion for helping people improve their language and communication, make her an incredibly valuable asset in the field of audiology. Learn more about Dr. Woolliams.