DID YOU KNOW?
- Some Hearing Aid manufacturers use Bluetooth connection to enable their hearing aids to wirelessly connect to mobile phones, MP3 players, televisions and other Bluetooth devices
- Most Hearing aids have data trackers that store information about listening environments, hours of use, and user preferences. This allows the audiologist to fine tune your devices specifically for your lifestyle.
These days, our technology is advancing so fast that we often get tangled in the many options that are available to us. While it can be nice to have options, many people hesitate to make choices because they are overwhelmed. So how do we do it? How do we decipher the information to find the hearing aid that is right for our needs?
Much like cell phones, hearing devices are advancing in warp speed. They come in all different colors, shapes, sizes, and style: which can be extremely overwhelming in terms of decision making. However, it is important to remember that though they all appear different; they do the same thing- send sounds from the environment to your ear. This means that different style still contain the same internal equipment required to amplify your hearing.
What are the different kinds of hearing aids?
While most people are familiar with Behind the Ear hearing aids (BTE), they are not familiar with their other options. Due to the lack of cosmetic appeal, technology has start leaning toward smaller and more hidden hearings. In fact, some are small enough to fit inside your ear canal, making them basically invisible. While others fit partially in your ear canal. The rule of thumb, however, is that the smaller the hearing aid is, the less powerful it is and the shorter its battery life. So, if you are someone with a severe hearing loss you will have to replace the battery every few days.
Completely-in-the-canal hearing aids are molded specifically to your ear canal and can improve mild to moderate hearing loss in adults. Benefits: is the least noticeable in the ear, is less likely to pick up wind noise, is easy to use with the telephone. Cons: doesn’t contain extra features, such as volume control or directional microphones.
An in-the-canal hearing aid is custom molded and fits partly in the ear canal, but not as deeply as the completely-in-the-canal aid. This hearing aid can improve mild to moderate hearing loss in adults. Benefits: is less visible in the ear, is easy to use with the telephone, and includes features that won’t fit on completely-in-the-canal aids. Cons: the small size can make the features difficult to adjust and it may not fit well in smaller ears.
The full-shell and half-shell hearing aids are custom molded to the bowl area of your outer ear. This style is appropriate for mild to moderately severe hearing loss. Benefits: easier to handle than are the smaller hearing aids, includes additional features, such as directional microphones and volume control, easy to put in the ear and have longer battery life. Cons: more visible to others and may pick up noise from wind.
Open-fit hearing aids are very small behind-the-ear-style devices. Sound travels from behind the ear through a small tube or wire to a tiny dome or speaker in the ear canal. These aids leave the ear canal open, so they’re best for mild to moderate high-frequency loss. Benefits: is less visible than regular BTE’s, doesn’t plug the ear like the small in-the-canal hearing aids do which alleviates pressure. Cons: may use very small batteries with low battery life and often lacks manual adjustments due to the small size.
Just because you have options does not mean you have to make a firm decision on your first appointment. Ask your audiologist about a “trial period” that allows you to test the different hearing aids that would work for you. This will give you time and experience to narrow down your choices.
Call Today's Hearing at (281) 578-7500 for more information or to schedule an appointment.