I saw a patient the other day who was unhappy with his hearing aids that he had paid over $5000 for. I decided to do a few measurements to see if this gentleman had been properly fit with his hearing aids. The answer was absolutely not. The amplifcation in the hearing aids was set way too low in the high frequencies for him to receive any benefit understanding speech with his hearing aids. This is a common problem with fittings today as the default settings used by most dispensers when fitting hearing aids are meant to give the user a comfortable setting to get used to the hearing aids. The aids should never be permanently left in this "first fit" setting as while they may be comfortable and you won't complain they sound tinny, the amplification isn't enough to give long-term benefit. When fit with hearing aids, if your dispenser doesn't increase the gain in the hearing aid at a follow up appointment or check that the gain is appropriate using a microphone in the ear and your hearing aid in place then your hearing aid is probably set too low. Having more high frequency gain in the hearing aid may sound different at first, but this is the region where amplification must occur to allow you to detect high frequency consonants which carry the most information when understanding what someone is saying. After wearing the aids set properly for a few days you will hear and understand the difference.