Choosing A Hearing Aid That Works For You

Hearing aids are the perfect tool for those with hearing loss. But getting your first hearing aids can feel overwhelming with all the different information out there. This article will break down the basics of the different kinds of hearing aids and discuss hearing aid technology so that you can find what will work for you. 

Styles of Hearing Aids

Behind-the-Ear (BTE)

This style of hearing aid is comprised of an electronic case that sits behind the ear, a small wire, and a soft earpiece that sits inside your ear. BTE aids are great for mild-to-profound hearing loss because they offer the most amplification. 

In-the-Ear (ITE)

This style of hearing aid fits in the bowl-like part of your ear called the outer ear. These often use a telecoil, a small magnetic coil that hears with circuitry instead of a microphone. Telecoils are ideal for places with complex sound systems, like churches, auditoriums, schools, and airports because telecoils get less interference. This style is good for mild-to-severe hearing loss but is not good for kids because they will need to be replaced a lot as the kid grows. 

In-the-Canal (ITC)

There are two types of canal hearing aids. They are both small and unobtrusive. In-the-canal devices fit mostly in the canal, but also sit just outside the canal in the outer ear. They have all the possible settings and features of bigger hearing aids. Given their small size, they are not optimal for people with poor dexterity. 

Completely-in-the-Canal (CIC)

This style does not offer all the possible features. Severe and profound hearing loss needs more power and volume than these small devices can provide. But if you have mild-to-moderate hearing loss these are a good option because they are the least visible.

Modern Technology

With modern technology, hearing aids can be programmed to do such things as filter varying pitches, perform well in both loud and quiet environments, and reduce wind and background noise. Most of them have rechargeable batteries, and some can also connect to your phone. Using an app you can change the settings, or even use the hearing aid as Bluetooth headphones.

Hearing Aid Fitting

Lifestyle, age, ear anatomy, and — of course — degree of hearing loss are all taken into account when determining what type of hearing aid will work best for you. You will work with your audiologist to find the hearing aid and settings that fit your needs. They will teach you how to clean the hearing aid, adjust the settings, put them in, and take them out. Keep working with your audiologist until you are comfortable. 

Getting hearing aids that work for you takes time and patience, but with this guide, you're well on your way to finding ones that work for you. If you're unsure if you need hearing aids, schedule an appointment with an audiologist or an ear, nose, and throat doctor to have your hearing checked.