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If you are in a busy restaurant, on a crowded train platform, or walking along a well-traveled street, there are conditions where the noise around you is overpowering. People who use hearing aids are particularly sensitive to this problem as it becomes difficult to differentiate between meaningless noise and important sound. Thanks to digital noise reduction, however, many hearing aid wearers are able to block out unwanted noise and concentrate on the things they are most interested in hearing.

Hearing aids that utilize digital noise reduction technology are able to pick up on the unique differences between speech and noise. This is easy to do when speaking to someone in a quiet room as the speech signals are the only sound around. However, when conversing in a noisy environment, your digital noise reduction equipped hearing aid can tell that there is unwanted sound present. Once your device picks up on sounds that may interfere with your ability to follow a conversation, it automatically lowers the volume in the noisy channels.

There is no hearing aid that can completely block out noise interference, but this function can still go a long way when it comes to lessening the frustration that comes from communicating in noisy areas. The general consensus among hearing aid wearers with this technology is that speech sounds better and background noise is less overpowering.

Digital noise reduction devices are most effective at eliminating background noise that stays at a constant level. Steady, unchanging sounds such as a car engine or an air conditioner are effectively blocked, but more dynamic noises such as loud music or conversation cannot be overcome as effectively.

To give your digital noise reduction capable hearing aid the best chance at succeeding, use common sense measures in conjunction with technology. If dining in a crowded restaurant, for example, consider asking to be seated in a quieter part of the room or request that the music playing overhead be turned down.

Digital noise reduction technology isn’t a fix for all background noise problems, but every little bit helps and the technology continues to improve every year.