Today, we celebrate the Power of Rural and the spirit of rural America. Join us in honoring the dedicated healthcare providers, State Offices of Rural Health, and rural stakeholders making a difference in these communities. Because rural communities are wonderful places to live and work, which is why nearly 61 million people call them home! We take great pride in serving some of the rural areas of West Central and South Alabama by providing free hearing screenings ensuring access to […]
These hearing aids can be purchased without seeing a doctor or any prescription on the internet or in the store. Approved for those 18 years and older with mild to moderate hearing loss. OTC hearing aids allow the opportunity for adults with difficulty hearing to have access to hearing healthcare so that they may be better able to communicate and improve their overall quality of life. The FDA approval of Over-the-counter hearing aids has allowed hearing health care to become […]
Today’s digital hearing aids use a processor that enhances the signal and delivers it to the receiver. Many modern hearing aids today come with Bluetooth connectivity and smartphone integration allowing users to stream music directly to their devices or to connect them with a TV. Their discrete size and appearance are drastically different compared to the first devices created like the Akouphone. There are even premium level hearing aids that utilize artificial intelligence which allows automatic adjustments to certain environments […]
The vacuum tube era revolutionized hearing aid technology. The Vactuphone, a device introduced in 1920 by Naval Engineer, Earl Hanson used vacuum tubes and a telephone transmitter to translate speech into an electrical signal. The Vactuphone improved the overall quality of sound amplification compared to earlier devices. The vacuum tube era laid the groundwork for further miniaturization and innovation in the field.
A portable version known as the “Acousticon”, was patented in 1902 by Hutchinson, found the greatest success and drew worldwide attention. This hearing aid consists of a round carbon microphone without volume control, and an earphone with a detachable metal headband as well as an on-off switch on the back. With the Acousticon, hearing aids became more accessible and practical for everyday use compared to its predecessor the Akouphone. Queen Alexandria, consort of Edward VII of England, asked Hutchison to […]
By 1898, Miller Reese Hutchinson from Baldwin County, Alabama had invented the first hearing aid called the Akouphone. It consisted of a double carbon microphone set at right angles, an earphone, and a six-volt storage battery carried in a rubber case. It was very bulky, heavy, and unsuitable for carrying around.
Hearing aid history is filled with inventions, from the ear trumpet in the 17th century to the high-tech hearing aids we have today. Jean Leurechon, a French priest, was the first to mention ear trumpets in writing in 1634. By the late 18th century, their use was becoming increasingly common.
Fast forward in time to 25 BC, a Roman encyclopedist, Aulus Cornelius Celsus was the first to differentiate between hearing disorders. Some of Celsus’s treatments are still in use today in their most minimal form, including those dealing with foreign bodies in the ear and ear wax build up in the ear canal.
Did you know that the study of the hearing started as early as 4th century BC? Hippocrates, the famous Greek physician, was said to have been the first person to try to understand hearing loss. He was the first in written history to use clinical research to try to understand hearing loss. He hypothesized that hearing loss came from injury to the skull. He also believed the wind and changes in the weather could be a factor.
In the month of October, we are celebrating National Audiology Month drawing awareness to the study of hearing, balance, and associated disorders. Roughly 13,000 audiologists in the United States work every day to diagnosis, treat, and educate to aid in the prevention of hearing loss. But where did everything start? Let’s go back in time to see who was the first to study hearing loss and how the scope of audiology has evolved into the profession it is today!