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Stigma Around Hearing Aids Preventing Hearing Aid Innovation?

The Hearing Industries Association recently launched its “Hear Well” campaign to educate the public on hearing loss and the critical role hearing professionals play in the identification and treatment of this common medical condition. Despite this important messaging, stigmas around hearing aids continue to prevent people from getting the help they need. 


People who would benefit from hearing aids cite a slew of stigmatizing reasons for not wearing them - saying they’re embarrassing, make them look disabled, and people make fun of them. Moreover, these stigmas may be thwarting needed hearing aid innovation.  Many seniors, people with physical limitations, people with challenging ear canals, and caregivers experience daily frustration and stress as they struggle to insert hearing aids in their ears.  


As president and founder of Each Ear, I created a solution to this hearing aid insertion problem.  Our award-winning Gruv Button Technology, with its ergonomic and universal design, enables all users and caregivers to easily maneuver the hearing aid speaker snuggly into the ear. The best implementation of this patented, assistive technology is to build it directly onto the hearing aid speaker during speaker-manufacturing.


But for three years, in spite of both hearing professional and consumer demand, senior managers at the hearing aid manufacturers have not engaged with us. This poses the Stigma-Marketing Question: Are they so intimidated by these stigmas that they are unwilling to improve their products – if it means acknowledging the needs of people who are older, have physical limitations, or have caregivers? 


The hearing aid industry has an opportunity, here, to significantly improve their products for their customers – and solve the stigma problem by replacing it with positive messaging such as Hearing Healthcare is the Smart Move, and thereby, facilitate the well-being of millions of people worldwide. 


I’d love to gauge your interest in an article on hearing aid design, the challenges the industry faces from years of stigma, and why these manufacturer senior managers are not using new innovations to help millions of customers. I’d be happy to hop on a call for an interview to talk about this as well. 


Please let me know if you’re interested or have any questions.  


Thank you,



Jeffrey Szmanda


Each Ear, LLC

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