About 48 million people in the U.S. suffer from hearing loss, and a majority of them will need hearing aids.
Hearing aids amplify external sound so that you can hear better.
But unlike hearing aids from the past, modern hearing aids are digital, which means sound waves travel through a computer chip that adjusts amplification based on external sound levels.
To help you select hearing aids that are right for you, here are some important considerations.
Select Hearing Aids Based On How they Fit Around Your Ears
Hearing aids come in different styles that fit differently in your ear. The most common include:
- Behind-the-Ear (BTE) – available in miniature or standard, these hearing aids attach to your ear with a thin wire. The mini versions are barely visible, but the standard versions are visible, so if that’s a problem, these are not for you.
- Completely-in-the-Canal (CIC) – these fit into your ear canal, so they aren’t visible, and they cut off the sound of wind. However, most CIC hearing aids are too small to include a directional microphone which amplifies sound from a specific direction. Also, its small size makes it difficult to adjust in your ear.
- In-the-Canal (IIC) – More visible than CIC hearing aids, but more comfortable and often include directional microphones.
- Traditional-in-the-Ear-Hearing (ITE) – fits on your outer ear with and has more features, but is completely visible.
Select Hearing Aids Based on Features
Hearing aids have different features, so depending on your level of hearing loss and convenience, you may want to think about the following:
- Directional microphone – amplifies sounds coming from directly in front of you, while dimming sound to the side and behind you. Also amplifies the sound of wind, which can be irritating.
- Digital Noise Reduction – blocks out noise in the background to help you hear sound in front of you.
- Digital Feedback Reduction – reduces feedback caused by other electronic devices, preventing high-pitched whistling sounds from traveling through your microphone.
These are the most common features of hearing aids, but you can also opt for wax guards that prevent ear wax buildup on your hearing aids, automatic volume control, and bluetooth technology that lets you listen to music through your hearing aid.
Get the Best Technology Has To Offer
Now that you better understand the features of the different types of hearing aids on the market, you may feel more confident about selecting your new hearing aids. But the great thing about life is that you usually have choices, so if you’re still a little unsure about hearing aids, you should make an appointment with an ENT as soon as possible. The team at Dr. Light E.N.T. is experienced, friendly and ready to help you with any questions or concerns you may have. Please call us at 561-737-8584 to schedule a consultation.