Hearing Aids Throughout the Ages

Imagine the slow creep of anxiety and fear as your ability to hear gradually begins to fade away. Imagine the world around you, once so full of rich, vibrant sound turning gradually silent. This is the unfortunate reality for the millions of people around the world who suffer from hearing loss. Thanks to modern technology and fantastic institutions like Albuquerque Speech Language Hearing Center, individuals who suffer from hearing loss have options for treating hearing disorders. One of the most effective ways to address hearing loss is with hearing aids. Today, we are going to look at how hearing aids have changed throughout the ages.

Ear Trumpets

For as long as humans have been around, people have been suffering from hearing loss. For thousands of years, we had no idea what to do about it. As early as the 13th century, the first primitive ear trumpets were created by hollowing out the horns of animals such as rams. In the 18th century, the first commercial brass ear trumpets were made. They amplified sound by collecting it and funneling it through a narrow tube placed in the ear.

Electronic Hearing Aids

The invention of the telephone and microphone in mid to late 19th century heralded the invention of electronic hearing aids. Telephone technology made it possible to control the loudness and frequency of sound. The first electronic hearing aid, created by Miller Reese Hutchinson in 1989 was called the Akoupone. It used a carbon transmitter to amplify sound with the help of electric currents.

Transistor and Digital Hearing Aids

The invention of the transistor enabled hearing aids to become smaller and require less battery power. Transistor technology also lessened sound distortion. Finally, in the 1970s, the modern miniaturized digital hearing aid was invented in large part thanks to technology created by Bell Telephone Laboratories.