As an Independent Audiology practice, we deliver better hearing outcomes as we provide the widest choice of hearings aids and hearing products available without bias. See “The Checkout” link in our blog for full disclosure.
Hearing aids are available in many different sizes and styles thanks to advances in digital technology and miniaturisation of the internal components. Many of today’s hearing aids are considered sleek, compact, and innovative – offering solutions to a wide range of hearing aid wearers.
When Selecting A Style The Following Is Considered:
- The degree of the hearing loss (power requirements)
- Manual dexterity & visual abilities
- A person’s budget
- Physical condition and anatomy of the ear
- Technology required
The latest advanced technology and a host of features are available in each hearing aid style. The cost of hearing aids generally depends on the technology level that is built into the aid and not based on the particular style.
Invisible In-The-Canal (IIC)
The smallest custom style, IIC instruments sit invisibly in or past the second bend of the ear canal. IIC are specifically designed for mild to moderate hearing loss.
CIC instruments fit deeply and entirely within the ear canal. They fit mild to severe hearing losses and offer high cosmetic appeal as they’re nearly invisible when worn.
ITC (In-the Canal)
ITC instruments 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 severe hearing losses.
Full Shell Or In-The-Ear (ITE)
Full shell models sit flush within the outer ear bowl. These larger styled hearing aids may benefit those with poorer dexterity being easier to use and having a longer lasting battery.
Hairstyles can be useful in covering these hearing aids. Also, 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 severe hearing losses.
Mini Behind-the-Ear (BTE) With Slim Tube And Tip
Mini Behind-the-Ear’s (BTE) are designed to hide behind the outer ear, and have ultra-thin tubing to discreetly 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.
Receiver In The Ear (RITE)
RITE models, 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.
Behind-the-Ear (BTE) with Ear mould
BTE’s with ear moulds 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 ear mould colour and style, as well as the wearer’s hairstyle, determine exactly how they’ll look on each person. These are the most robust hearing aids on the market.
Our Audiologists are trained in the very latest hearing aid products. We attend all launches of new products or have one on one inductions in-office with hearing aid representatives from all manufacturers. This allows us to have the resources and knowledge required to fit all hearing aids as soon as the hearing aids hit the market place.
Overall, however, the hearing aids are available in several different technology levels such as a basic or entry-level to advanced or premium. The level of technology necessary is based on the person’s hearing loss and daily activities. The Audiologist will recommend a variety of hearing aid features and recommend the level of hearing aid technology suited to you.