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Hearing Aids Types

Types Of Hearing Aids

The hearing aids can be categorised based on the shape / or based on the technology. While the technology required for a patient is ascertained after a rigorous pre-fitting check up and patient's life style profile, the shape is often left to the patient to decide based on their comfort. The following are the models of hearing aids based on the shape:

i. Behind the ear (BTE) Behind the ear (BTE)

BTE hearing aids hook over the top of your ear and rest behind the ear. The hearing aid picks up sound, amplifies it and carries the amplified sound to an ear mold that fits inside your ear canal. This type of aid is appropriate for almost all types of hearing loss and for people of all ages.

A BTE hearing aid:
  • Is the largest, most visible type of hearing aid, though some new versions are smaller, streamlined and barely visible
  • Is capable of more amplification than are other hearing aid styles

ii. Invisible In Canel (IIC) Invisible In Canel (IIC)

IIC is pretty similar to the Completely-In-the-Canal but it is hidden deeper in the ear. It got a few downsides as you can read below. The invisible-in-the-canal hearing aids are located much deeper in the canal and they are practically invisible even if you look directly into the ear. You got this tiny nylon thread so you can pull it out. Like its big brother (The CIC), they make the IIC tailor made for your ear

A IIC hearing aid:
  • is custom made to ensure a perfect fit.
  • is tight fit means users can better determine where sounds are coming from
  • has no joined parts mean there are no hard edges

iii. In the canal (ITC) In the canal (ITC)

These are custom molded and fit partly in the ear canal, but not as deeply as the CIC. This hearing aid can improve mild to moderate hearing loss in adults.

A ITC hearing aid:
  • Is less visible in the ear
  • Is easy to use with the telephone

iv. Completely in the canal (CIC) Completely in the canal (CIC)

These are molded to fit inside your ear canal and can improve mild to moderate hearing loss in adults.

A CIC hearing aid:
  • Is the least noticeable in the ear
  • Is less likely to pick up wind noise because the ear protects the instrument
  • Is easy to use with the telephone

v. Open fit/ RIC Open fit/ RIC

These are very small BTE-style devices. Sound travels from the instrument 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 are best for mild to moderate high-frequency losses where low-frequency hearing is still normal or near normal.

A open-fit hearing aid:
  • Is less visible
  • Doesn't plug the ear like the small in-the-canal hearing aids do
  • Uses very small batteries
  • Lacks manual adjustments due to the small size
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