The smallest custom style, IIC hearing aids sit invisibly in or past the second bend of the ear canal. IIC are specifically designed for mild to moderate hearing loss.
The smallest custom style, CIC hearing aids fit deeply and entirely within the ear canal. They fit mild to moderate hearing losses and offer high cosmetic appeal as they’re nearly invisible when worn.
ITC hearing aids sit in the lower portion of the outer ear bowl, making them comfortable and easy to use. Because they’re slightly larger than CIC models, they have a longer battery life, and can host additional features such as directional microphones for better understanding in noisy environments, and controls such as volume controls. They fit mild and moderate hearing losses.
Half shell hearing aids fill half the bowl of the outer ear. Like ITC models, their size enables the addition of features such as directional microphones, volume controls and push buttons to activate special settings for different listening environments. Because of their size, they may be easier than smaller models to handle for some people and yet are still often disguised by hairstyles or sideburns. This hearing aid style looks similar to the ITC hearing aid when worn on the ear, but is slightly larger.
Full shell hearing aids sit within the outer ear bowl. Their size allows the maximum number of additional controls and features such as directional microphones, which require space on the outer portion of the instrument. They use a larger battery size than the smaller styles, and can fit a larger receiver with enough power for even some severe hearing losses. Because of their flexibility, they’re widely recommended for mild to severe hearing loss.
Mini BTE hearing aids are designed to hide behind the outer ear, and have ultra-thin tubing to discretely route sound into the ear. The tubing connects to a soft tip that sits in the ear canal but doesn’t occlude it. The result is a natural, open feeling as airflow and sound enter the ear naturally around the tip, while amplified sound enters through the tip. This is known as “open fitting” and is recommended for mild to moderate high frequency losses.
RITE hearing aids, also known as RIC (receiver-in-canal) models, are mini BTEs that have the speaker of the instrument incorporated in the ear tip, instead of in the main body of the instrument. RITE instruments fit mild to severe hearing losses. This hearing aid style looks similar to the Mini BTE when worn on the ear.
BTE hearing aids with earmoulds fit mild through profound hearing losses. Their longer shape follows the contour behind the outer ear and can house many features such as a program button and volume control. The earmold color and style, as well as the wearer’s hairstyle, determine exactly how they’ll look on each person.
Hearing tests check a person’s ability to hear the loudness and pitch of sounds. Some reasons why you may need a hearing test include ringing in your ears, others companing that you talk too loud or watch the TV on high volume, or simply you have trouble hearing conversations.
While there’s no replacement for a consultation with a hearing-care expert, our free online hearing screening can provide some quick and useful feedback about your hearing. The screening should be carried out in quite space and all you need is a pair of headphones!
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