What are the Different Styles of Hearing Aids?
There are several different styles of hearing aids. Three of the most common are in-the-ear hearing aids (ITE), behind the ear (BTE) and in the canal (ITC). All of these are an effective treatment for hearing loss and an audiologist will be able to identify which type is the most suitable for you. Hearing aids work by amplifying sounds for your brain to interpret. They use a microphone to pick up the sounds and then a computer chip with an amplifier converts it.
Hearing aids now are days are mostly digital, and they have several advanced features. They automatically adjust to different environments and can even be controlled by a smartphone or other device. Here is an overview of the three main styles of hearing aids.
In-the-ear hearing aids
ITE hearing aids are placed inside the ear, covering a part of the external concha. They are made using a mold of your ear, which will be taken by an audiologist using 3D imaging technology. They are therefore custom-made and very comfortable. ITE hearing aids are also easy to insert and remove. While new models can be adjusted by a smartphone or remote control, they’re also larger enough to have some controls situated on the casing itself, such as volume.
Behind-the-ear hearing aids
BTE hearing aids are placed comfortably behind the ear. They are larger than ITE models but are also available in a micro version. An earpiece is also worn inside the ear, connected to the part behind the ear with a small tube. This transmits the sound into the ear. BTE hearing aids are powerful devices and are used to treat even severe cases of hearing loss. Newer models are also compatible with smartphones and have plenty of automated features.
In-the-canal hearing aids
ITC hearing aids are worn completely inside the ear canal. This makes them very convenient and discreet. They’re much more intricate than larger models, but can be controlled remotely from a smartphone or other device. ITC hearing aids are barely visible and custom-fit to the wearer’s ear. An audiologist will have them made according to a mold, similar to ITE hearing aids. This means they’re very comfortable. ITC hearing aids can be used to improve mild-to- moderate hearing loss.
What does an audiologist do?
An audiologist is a trained expert and experienced in all types of hearing aids. If you’re experiencing permanent hearing loss, an audiologist will be able to recommend the most suitable solution for you. Hearing aids are the most common treatment of hearing loss, and with advances in the field, have really come a long way.
Digital hearing aids are very effective and adjust their settings to your environment, balance out background noise and amplify important sounds such as voices in a conversation. The style of hearing aid you choose depends on your own unique requirements. An audiologist will be able to give you all the information you need. They’ll even help you get used to your new hearing aids, and provide ongoing support.