Hearing problems are more treatable today than ever before. The hearing aid industry has become a leader in microelectronic technology. Patients can now rely on sleek, discreet and technologically-advanced devices to not only help their hearing, but to improve their quality of life!
Types of hearing aids
Hearing aids are available in many different sizes and styles thanks to advancements in digital technology and miniaturization of the internal components. Many of today's hearing aids are considered sleek, compact, and innovative - offering solutions to a wide range of hearing aid wearers.
Completely in canal (CIC): A CIC is one of the smallest hearing aids and is custom made to fit entirely in your canal. These devices are recommended for mild-to-moderate hearing loss and are less visible than larger aids. They offer less wind noise than out-of-ear models, but are smaller in general and require tiny batteries that can be difficult for some people to handle.
In the canal (ITC): ITC hearing aids sit partially in the ear canal and partially outside in the bowl of the outer ear. They are bigger, have larger batteries and often have more accessible controls to adjust for sound conditions. Many patients find that adjustability is a favorite feature in hearing better. ITC hearing aids are recommended for people with mild-to-moderate hearing loss.
In the ear (ITE): ITE hearing aids sit outside the ear canal and generally come in two shapes: full bowl or half bowl. This means that they fill the entire outer bowl of the ear or just the lower half. They are fully controllable and have larger batteries, making them ideal for individuals with dexterity issues that still desire discreetness. ITE devices are usually suggested for people with mild-to-severe hearing loss.
Behind the ear (BTE): BTE hearing aids are generally the most powerful and are designed to send sound signals to the ear canal through a clear plastic tube with an ear bud device on the ear canal end. These are generally the largest types of aids, but micro technology has allowed them to be manufactured in slimmer, smaller packages in the last several years. They now fit quite comfortably and invisibly behind the ear. Additionally, to help with discreetness, they come in an array of colors, including skin tone. These powerful devices are recommended for people with mild-to-severe hearing loss.
Hearing Aid Technology
In addition to selecting the right hearing aid style for your hearing loss, it’s important to find one with the proper amount of technology and features for your lifestyle and preferences. Depending on how advanced you want your hearing technology to be, devices are available with the following different features:
- Directional microphones: Many advanced hearing aids offer the directional microphone feature. This allows you to switch between different settings to utilize your listening experience depending on the environment you’re in.
- Range compression: Many hearing aids offer a feature known as range compression. This setting helps hearing aids to filter and adjust sounds coming into your ear to ensure you hear the right pitch – and not one that is too loud!
- Multiple memory settings: Most hearing aids offer a least a few different memory settings to switch between. Depending on your lifestyle, you may want a hearing aid with multiple memory settings that enable you to switch between different programs based on your surroundings or activity.
- Water resistant: While it can be difficult to make a hearing aid completely waterproof, many are available with a water-resistant casing. This means accidental splashes while sitting poolside or in the rain will give you more protection than the typical device.
- Rechargeable: Some hearing devices offer a rechargeable feature. So instead of constantly switching batteries you simply recharge your device.
There are a variety of hearing aid features available depending on the technology you’re looking for; be sure to talk with your hearing instrument specialist and express what qualities you’re most interested in.
Talk with your hearing instrument specialist
Selecting a hearing aid can feel like an overwhelming task when you consider the plethora of features and styles available today. Our hearing instrument specialist will better explain the benefits of each hearing aid and will help you eliminate the models least suitable to your hearing loss. Schedule a visit with our office today to talk more about your hearing loss, what you’re looking for out of your hearing aid and what we can do to help you take the first step to better hearing!
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Hearing Aid Products and Accessories by Manufacturer
Electronic Shooter Protection (ESP)
Since 1994, ESP has served hunters and shooters by providing the original, custom-fit, in-the-ear hearing protection. ESP electronic hearing protectors and earplugs are custom-molded to your ears for a precise, comfortable fit.
Oticon was founded on a compassion for people — and a deep understanding of the role that hearing plays in living a richer and fuller life. People First is our promise to empower people to communicate freely, interact naturally and participate actively.
Phonak's goal is to improve the quality of life of people with hearing loss. Phonak is the innovative force in hearing acoustics. With our creative solutions, we strive to overcome technological limitations - so that all people are able to hear, understand and fully enjoy life's rich landscapes of sound.
Our Resound Hearing Aids and Accessories
ReSound provides excellent sound by offering innovative hearing solutions that combine original thinking and design with solid technology - all based on deep audiological insight and understanding of hearing aid users.
Signia/Siemens offers a broad range of hearing aids for every lifestyle and all configurations of hearing loss—including completely invisible, waterproof, and rechargeable hearing aids. Signia/Siemens also has a complete line of wireless accessories that connect hearing aids wirelessly to mobile phones, TVs, MP3 players, and other audio devices.
Starkey Hearing Technologies is much more than the hearing aids we produce. We are in the business of connecting people and changing lives. We believe being able to hear the world and the people around us is as essential to the human experience as breathing.
Our Starkey Hearing Aids and Accessories
For our hearing healthcare professional partners, we deliver an exceptional customer experience based on renowned personal service. For their patients, we create products that make a real difference in people’s lives.
At Widex, we combine years of understanding with a natural curiosity in finding solutions to individual hearing loss. Our uncompromising approach to innovation has led to such advances as the world’s first fully digital in-the-ear hearing aid, as well as our own revolutionary wireless technology.