Best Hearing Aids
Finding the right hearing aid for your needs is essential to your quality of life when you are experiencing hearing loss. There are many types of hearing aids available for a good reason. Nobody experiences hearing loss in quite the same way, and everybody will require different features.
Some models fit inside of the ear snugly, while others may go behind the ear. Some are almost invisible, while some can be customized to your skin tone to ensure optimal discretion. They each have benefits and limitations that must be considered before making your final decision. If you are ever in doubt, contacting an audiologist for an assessment and professional advice is advised.
In-the-ear (ITE) hearing aids
This type of hearing aid is the largest of all custom hearing aids, and the aid sits in the ear canal rather than behind the ear. They are usually sculpted to fit either your full external ear or half of your external ear. You can have an extraction cord fitted to ensure this style is easy to remove.
ITE styles use a size 13 battery. The typical lifespan of a size 13 battery is between 10-14 days, but this can vary depending on the number of hours each day the hearing aid is worn, the severity of hearing loss and other factors.
The ITE hearing aids have the following benefits:
- Dual microphones improve speech understanding
- Wireless and telecoil options
- Increased surface area means they are less likely to whistle due to acoustic leakage
- They are less likely to become loose when talking or chewing
- Powerful and suitable for profound hearing loss
ITE hearing aids are also ideal for someone who has limited dexterity and reduced vision, as they are large and easy to fit or remove.
It’s important to be aware of the limitations of ITE hearing aids. They may not be as discreet as invisible models and the telephone receiver needs to be held in a slightly unnatural position over the front of the microphone when speaking on the phone.
Behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aids
BTE hearing aids are worn behind the ear. This is one of the most powerful models out there. This type of hearing aid is small and delicate in size even though they are powerful models. They are visible but still discreet. Different colors are available to match your skin tone to make them as discreet as possible.
The BTE hearing aid tends to be easy to handle, insert and adjust. It is suitable for all levels of hearing loss.
There are also the following benefits:
- Can fit many extra features
- A longer battery life than most models
- Mini and more powerful versions available
There are limitations with the BTE model just like any other model out there. They may not be right for you if you have poor vision or manual dexterity, as they are so delicate. Tubing will also need regular replacement as it can become hard and brittle, which then affects sound quality and transmission. The microphone may also be more susceptible to damage due to dead skin from behind the ear.
In the canal (ITC) hearing aids
ITC hearing aids are custom fitting, and a smaller portion of the hearing aid shows in the outer ear. The ITC hearing aid is suitable for mild to mildly severe hearing loss and is custom made to your specifications. There are a number of colors available to suit your skin tone to make it as discreet as possible.
ITC hearing aids use a size 312 battery which lasts anywhere between five to seven days, but this can vary depending on how often the hearing aid is worn and how severe the hearing condition.
Further benefits include:
- Suitable for mild to severe hearing loss
- More powerful than they look
- Ideal for somebody who has limited dexterity and reduced vision
It’s worth noting that the telephone receiver needs to be held in a slightly unnatural position over the front microphone when in use. As with all custom hearing aids, ITC hearing aids may need to be re-shelled from time to time.
Learn more about Your Hearing Connection
There are many subcategories of hearing aids that you may also wish to explore in order to find the model that is right for you. If you’d like to make sure you select the right hearing aid for your needs, you can learn more about Your Hearing Connection today – call at 626-538-9920 for expert advice.