If you are having hearing issues, then you will no doubt be looking at getting a hearing aid. While you may be worried about how it will look or whether it will help, this article will be able to help ease your concerns as it will discuss:
- The options available to you
- What to look for in a hearing aid
- How to break it in
While hearing aids will never be able to restore your normal hearing, they will be able to improve your hearing by amplifying softer sounds while reducing loud background noise.
Hearing Aid Styles
Every hearing aid uses similar parts to carry sounds from the environment you are into your ear to make them louder. Hearings can vary when it comes to size, price, special features and the way they're place in your ear.
The following hearing aides are some of the more common styles, beginning with the smallest and least visible in the ear. Designers typically make smaller hearing aids to meet the demand for a hearing aid that can't easily be seen. In saying that, the smaller aids may not have the power to give you the increase in hearing that you might expect.
Completely in the Canal
A completely-in-the-canal hearing aid can be moulded by a professional to sit inside your ear canal and is an example of one of the many invisible hearing aids. It will also improve mild to moderate hearing loss in adults. Furthermore, completely-in-the-canal hearing aids, such as lyric hearing aids and other invisible hearing aids, are highly effective and convenient for the user because they are:
- The smallest and least visible
- Are less likely to pick up wind noise
- Use small batteries which have a shorter life
- Don't contain extra features, such as volume control or directional microphone
- Can be susceptible to earwax clogging
In the canal
It is a custom moulded hearing aid that fits partly in the ear canal. It is able to improve mild to moderate hearing loss in adults. This type of hearing aid:
- Is less visible in the ear than any of the larger styles
- Includes features that won't fit on the aforementioned completely-in-the-canal aids, but may be hard to adjust due to its smaller size
In the ear
This hearing aid is custom made in two styles: one that fits a majority of the bowl-shaped area of your outer ear and one that fits on the lower part. The good news is both are helpful for people with mild to severe hearing loss. Its features are:
- Volume control and directional microphones that are easily adjustable
- Easier to insert
- Uses larger batteries
- Can pick up more wind noise than smaller devices
- More visible than smaller devices
Behind the Ear
This hearing aid rests over the top of your ear as well as behind your ear. There is a tube that connects the hearing aid to a custom earpiece referred to as an ear mould that fits into your canal. It's appropriate for people of any age and those with any level of hearing loss.
It has traditionally been the largest type of hearing aid and is capable of more amplification than other styles. Furthermore, it can pick up more win noise than other styles.
Receiver in the canal or the ear
The receiver-in-canal and receiver-in-the-ear hearing aids are similar to the behind-the-ear models with the receiver or speaker positioned in the canal or in the ear. Instead of tubing, a tiny wire connects the pieces.
Again, this hearing aid is a variation of the behind-the-ear hearing aid. It is positioned in the canal and keeps it open, while exposing the ear to low-frequency sounds and for the high-frequency sounds to be amplified through the hearing aid. This is suitable for those people who have mild to profound hearing loss.