Read on to find out about the different types of hearing aids.request an appointment
Types of Hearing Aids
Hearing aids have different unique features and vary depending on how they work and their unique features. The main types of hearing aids include:
A behind-the-ear hearing aid device hooks over the outer ear and rests behind the ear. The housing, which contains all the electronics, is encased in plastic and connects to the ear canal with a custom earpiece called an ear mold. BTE is appropriate and effective for people with severe to profound hearing loss.
This smaller and virtually invisible hearing aid fits nicely inside the ear canal. It has the advantage of collecting sound using the ears’ natural ability and may have a volume adjusting device. CIC can help mild to moderately severe hearing loss. The small size can make removing or adjusting it difficult. The battery life is shorter. CIC is not ideal for adults or children having issues with tinny devices. Another similar device to CIC is the Invisible-in-Canal (IIC). Which is the smallest invisible hearing aid inside the ear. IIC is well hidden and almost undetectable hearing. The devices can be used daily or for several months at a time.
Receiver- in- canal (RIC), also called receiver-in-the-ear (RITE) or canal receiver technology (CRT) is lightweight, sleek, and discreet. They hold all the electronics in a tiny housing and have a behind-the-ear component connected to a receiver in the ear canal with a thin tube. Mild to profound levels of hearing loss can be treated with a receiver-in-canal hearing aid and receiver-in-the-ear.
ITC hearing aid, also known as Half shell hearing aid, is made out of a custom mold of your ear and designed to fit in your ear canal. ITC is ideal for mild to moderate hearing loss but is not recommended for profound hearing loss. Being a bit bigger than CIC, they are easy to insert and remove and have longer battery life. ITC is light and easy, and comfortable to use.
In-the-ear hearing aids (ITE) have no external wires or visible tubes and are designed to fill the ear’s outer portion. It is less discreet than ITC but has more features and is easy to adjust and handle. ITE allows you to receive sound through the hearing aid circuit rather than the microphone making it easier to hear people over the phone. ITE is suitable for mild to severe hearing loss.
Hearing Aid Technologies
The hearing aid technology has advanced in both functionality and sophistication. Typically, they have been designed with four essential parts a microphone, processor, receiver, and power source. Generally, hearing aids are available in basic, mid-level, and advanced technologies.
Digital hearing aids are flexible when fitting and fine-tuning compared to analog devices, which are cheaper and less common. Some of the technological advancements in hearing aid technology include:
- Feedback/Whistling cancellation
- Directional microphones
- Digital noise reduction
- Customized Programming
- Wax guards
- Automatic volume control.
- Wireless connectivity
- Rechargeable batteries
- a plug-in audio output
- Remote controls
- Bluetooth connectivity
How Can I Find Out If I Need a Hearing Aid?
Hearing senses are vital for communication and connecting to the world and surroundings. A hearing aid can benefit you if you have hearing loss. To determine this, you need to visit your audiologist.
Get an expert evaluation and diagnosis from our experienced ENT specialists at Ear, Nose & Throat Care PC. During a hearing evaluation, your audiologist will check on the severity (degree) of your hearing loss and perform a physical exam of your ear. A hearing test can be performed to assess the frequency of your hearing loss to help determine the cause and type of hearing loss. Your doctor will discuss with you when choosing a hearing aid that best suits your overall needs.
What to Consider When Choosing a Hearing Aid
Choosing your hearing aid depends on the type and degree of your hearing loss. Your audiologist can determine what type of hearing aid will suit your needs and functionality. If you have hearing loss in both ears, you need to wear two hearing aids to provide natural brain signals. Choosing the best device for you may depend on age or how well you can manage small devices and functionality. Consider the following when choosing a hearing aid:
: Based on your lifestyle, choose a device that can accommodate the things you enjoy, such as sports. Choose a device that offers enhanced noise and feedback reduction. If you are outgoing and constantly attend social functions, a hearing aid with automatic directional microphones helps minimize background noise.
If you love technology and are constantly using your phone or watching television, a Bluetooth-enabled device can help you bring the sounds from your dives directly to your hearing aid.
If you need or want a device with multiple environmental settings, you can have one preprogrammed for your needs.
: For cosmetic preferences, you can choose according to the visibility, size, style, and color you prefer. Since you will be wearing them all day, choosing one that makes you feel comfortable, especially around people, is essential. You can also opt for one that is barely visible or undetectable.
For budgetary needs, choose a device that caters to your specific hearing needs. Choosing an FDA-approved product is essential. A cheap device that is ineffective is a waste of money and time, while an expensive one having features you do not need won’t help.
To learn more about the different types of hearing aids, call Ear, Nose &Throat Care PC for more information or schedule an appointment online.