Hearing aids are an important part of modern society, yet you may not know about the options that exist. Hearing aids work via small microphone and a computer chip which converts the sound into code. Then, based on the noises in your surroundings, the code is converted into sound waves and pulsed into your ear. Though the basics of hearing aids are the same, there are a number of types you can choose from. Here are the most common:
CIC (Completely in the Canal)
CIC aids are custom molded to fit right inside your ear canal. If you have moderate loss of hearing, this may be a great option for you. These are the smallest, least sensitive, and most basic form of hearing aids. However, the battery life is quite short, and they may contribute to earwax clogging as well.
ITC (In the Canal)
ITC hearing aids fit partially into your ear canal and are also molded. Moderate loss of hearing may indicate that this kind of hearing aid is good for you. It is not as visible as the larger styles, but it does show more than CIC aids and still contributes to clogging.
ITE (In the Ear)
ITE hearing aids are the kind that can fit in the "bowl" of your ear. This is the part of your ear surrounded by your ear lobe, which leads to your eardrum. If your hearing loss is severe or moderate, this may be the best option for you. With ITE aids, you can adjust the hearing and direct the microphone toward a certain area to make conversing in public easier. In addition, they are typically easier to take out and re-insert, as well as lasting longer and picking up on more noises. However, they do also cause earwax clogging and are very visible.
BTE (Behind the Ear)
BTE aids rest on the top of your ear. A tube goes from the hearing aid and into your ear, putting the earpiece in contact with the outer air portion. This is a style that is customizable in terms of volume and picks up on a lot of amplification.
Open fit aids allow natural sound to go in through the canal while the outer portion amplifies certain frequencies. It is sort of a hybrid approach. However, adjustments are very difficult to make.
Choosing the right hearing aid can be a difficult process. There are many options on the market now. Depending on whether you have mild, moderate, or severe hearing loss is an important factor. In addition, the level of visibility that you are comfortable with is also important. With this information, you are well on your way to making the best choice possible to let you hear better. Contact a local hearing center, like Bentley Hearing Services, for more information.