SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — People using hearing aids now have a new option to help their hearing.

Charles Banyai retired from the military with a hearing disability, which later led him to seek the use of a hearing aid.

He says the difference in his hearing was huge.

“The first set of hearing aids, really made me aware of how much I was not hearing. I mean, I heard things in his office that I did not hear until after he put the hearing aids in, so it was quite a shock,” Banyai said.

Over the last 9 years, he’s tried out three different ones- each offering its set of pros and cons.
But now he’s hearing aid free, and instead using a new device called Earlens.

“The Earlens is a really a revolutionary concept and breakthrough in enhanced hearing. In terms, it works along with the premise of a radio frequency being transmitted down to a tiny amplifying motor that is actually custom fit to each patients eardrum,” Dr. Robert Froke said.

The device is placed on the eardrum to vibrate and activate your normal hearing process, without using a speaker.

Dr. Robert Froke with Midwest ENT says conventional hearing aids work in the range of about 200 Hertz to about 6,500 Hertz, with the Earlens offering a much more expanded range.

“You get better hearing in noise that can separate the speech from the background noise that they’re struggling to overcome or compete against. And it’s just a much, much more natural experience,” Froke said.

Banyai says the device has allowed him to understand people much easier than before, and even eliminate past issues he dealt with when wearing hearing aids.

“When I wore regular hearing aids. Look, if somebody drops something or even if my wife sneezes, it would come out super loud in the hearing aids and startle me. And since I’ve gotten the Earlens, I have nothing like that,” Banyai said.

In addition to better hearing, Banyai says his quality of life has improved since getting the device about two months ago.

“It just makes it that much easier to be around people because I can actually understand what they’re saying. I don’t feel left out of conversations anymore,” Banyai said.

To learn more about Earlens, click here.