Owensboro resident Logan Howard is utilizing technology to make a positive impact in his everyday life and hobbies. Howard was born hearing but had a gradual decline in hearing loss that resulted in speech therapy and a hearing aid. With advances in technology, he now uses Bluetooth enabled hearing aids and considers them “life-changing.”
“They are pretty awesome. The particular hearing aids I have now are called ‘ReSound’ and they are actually made for iPhone,” Howard said. “Bluetooth hearing aids come with an app on the phone and you are able to mess with the equalizers and turn the hearing aids up or down. You can also switch to different modes like a restaurant mode that blocks out the background noise.”
Not only is Howard able to hear and control his hearing aids from the technology he can also stream audio from his devices directly into his hearing aids.
“They are life changing. I listen to all my music through my hearing aids and the microphones on my hearing aids are still active so I can still hear all the sounds in my environment and control the Bluetooth signal,” Howard said. “It’s actually really cool for me because I’m a musician and I’ve been playing drums since I was little. I’ve been in hearing aids since I was in 5th grade. Originally the way my ears process the sound without hearing aids allows me to feel the music a little better. A lot of the music I play anymore is improvisational so using the Bluetooth I can actually hear the band, I can hear the guitar, and play with the band by reacting to what’s going on around me.”
He is working on how to get his hearing aids to become an in-ear monitor, because currently, there is a delay of a few milliseconds that are important to him as a musician.
Howard plays in two local bands and said the devices have also helped in the studio. Both bands, Friends the Band and Robbie Holder and The Perfect Storm, will both be playing at Porch Fest, and other tri-state and out of state shows.
Howard said he felt like his hearing deficiency cut him off in the past when he wasn’t able to hear and is thankful to be able to continue to live his passion for music with the help of the aids.
“You don’t realize how much you can’t hear until you really can hear,” Howard said. “If you’ve had a hearing loss over time and you move to a hearing aid it will sound different from normal sound. It doesn’t sound as natural so it bothers some people. I say to be able to hear in normal conversation even if it sounds a little different is well worth it. There’s nothing like spending time with your loved ones and being able to hear them. You miss so much when you can’t hear the conversation.”
Howard obtained his current hearing aids through a Vocational Rehabilitation grant through the State of Kentucky.
For more information on the services available at Vocational Rehabilitation visit their website.