In an earlier blog we outlined how to tell if you need a hearing test.
Today we will look at the types of hearing aids available and outline what you need to consider to be able to make an informed decision about which one might best suit your circumstances.
There are many hearing aid manufacturers around the world and all of them produce excellent quality hearing aids that will meet all budgets and needs. Hearing Care Professionals operate independently of any manufacturer or supplier but we do prefer to use hearing aids from four major companies operating in Australia. (Click on names to view their home pages)
If it is determined that you need a hearing aid the four factors to be considered include:
- Your hearing evaluation results
- The style of hearing aids required, including any cosmetic concerns
- The level of technology required to meet your lifestyle and communication needs
- Your budget.
There are thousands of hearing aids available on the market and they come in a bewildering array of models, colours and features. They vary in the way they look (style) and their performance or technology. Style refers to what the hearing aid looks like. Performance or level of technology is what is inside. Choosing the hearing system that suits you best can make a huge difference to getting the best out of your hearing as it will be optimised to suit your hearing and your lifestyle.
Models and Styles
Modern digital hearing technology comes in wide range of styles and designs. So whether you’re looking for an ultra-discreet solution, or something that is practical and easy to handle, your choice has never been greater. The various styles of hearing aids include:
- Completely in canal (CIC, IIC)
- In the ear (ITE) or In the canal (ITC)
- Behind the ear (BTE)
- Receiver in the canal (RIC) or Receiver in the Ear (RITE),
- Invisible Hearing Aids
Each of these choices comes with advantages and disadvantages which we will explore in blogs over the next couple of weeks.
Performance of Hearing Aids
Performance or level of technology is what is inside the hearing instrument. The performance level you need is dictated by your lifestyle and communication needs?
Step 1: Decide whether you need to hear better in lots of challenging environments or relatively few less challenging ones?
- Do you mostly stay at home
- Move in always changing environments
- Active at work
Step 2: Do you want many features and performance to meet different lifestyle and communication needs. Hearing Aids are available in three price and feature levels. Premium with the highest number of features and cost, then Advanced and finally Value, which offer the lowest cost but not as many features.
In the next articles we will explore each of the styles of hearing aids and discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each.
All information is provided in the interests of Hearing Health education and is of a general nature.
This article is not sponsored by any hearing aid manufacturer as Hearing Care Professionals is an independent Audiology practice.
In all cases you should consult your doctor or other allied health professional for advice regarding your individual circumstances.