Do all hearing aids work the same way?

Hearing aids work differently depending on the electronics used. The two main types of electronics are analog and digital.

Analog aids convert soundwaves into electrical signals, which are then amplified.  Analog devices are can be adjusted or programmed to meet the needs of each user.  This is done by your hearing professional.  The use of analog processing in hearing aids is virtually extinct today.

Digital aids convert soundwaves into numerical codes, similar to the binary code of a computer, before amplifying them. Because the code also includes information about a sound’s pitch or loudness, the aid can be specially programmed to amplify some frequencies more than others. Digital circuitry gives a hearing professional more flexibility in adjusting the aid to a user’s needs and to certain listening environments. These aids also can be programmed to focus on sounds coming from a specific direction. Digital circuitry can be used in all types of hearing aids.