Do you or someone that you know suffer from hearing loss? Hearing loss is a disability that can change your life and make it difficult to work, socialize and enjoy yourself, but it is important to know that often you can improve your hearing through a hearing aid. While they can’t restore normal hearing, they can improve hearing by amplifying sounds that you have trouble with and this can greatly improve your quality of life.
There are a few different types of hearing aid to choose from depending on your needs but they all work in the same way which is by using small microphones to collect sounds. A computer chip then converts sounds into digital code, which adjusts the sound based on your hearing needs and the level of sounds around you which is then converted back into sound waves and delivered to your ears.
Completely in the Canal (CIC)
As the name suggests, CIC hearing aids are very small and molded to fit directly inside your ear canal. The benefits are that they are very small and the least visible and they are less likely to pick up wind noise. They can be hard to handle and use small batteries with a shorter life than alternatives and earwax can clog the speaker.
In the Canal (ITC)
ITC hearing aids are again custom-molded but this time only partly fit into the ear canal, which means that they are more visible but not as much as other styles. They often have features that you do not get with CIC, but they can still be hard to handle due to their size.
In the Ear (ITC)
ITE hearing aids come in two styles – full shell fills most of the bowl-shaped area of the outer ear while half shell fills only the lower half. These hearing aids are obviously more noticeable and can pick up wind noise, but they do have longer battery life, often features such as directional mics and are easier to handle.
Behind the Ear (BTE)
BTE hearing aids hook over the top and rest behind the ear and then have a tube that connects the hearing aid to a custom earpiece in the ear canal. Newer designs can make these less visible, they can provide greater amplification and can help those with any level of hearing loss.
These are the main types of hearing aid available and there is a type for every need. To identify the best type for you, it is important to speak to a hearing specialist who will be able to help you to make the right choice.