When people experience hearing loss, they usually ask one question first: “Will I need a hearing aid?” Whether an injury or disease causes sudden hearing loss, or it occurs slowly over time, the loss is aggravating at best and frightening for a lot of people.
There was a time when hearing aids were bulky mechanical devices that were difficult to wear, test and adjust. Luckily, those days are over. Hearing aids are electronic marvels in miniature that can be very finely adjusted and fit the needs of every wearer. There are several styles of hearing aids available.
New hearing aids feature Bluetooth technology, ultra-miniaturization and more power than ever before. Some are invisibly placed completely in the ear. Many are custom molded to the outer ear. All are designed to give you the choices that people in the past could only dream about.
Let’s look at the styles available at Advanced Hearing Care:
Styles of Hearing Aids
Hearing aids are available in many different sizes and styles thanks to advancements in digital technology and miniaturization 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.
Various hearing aid styles we offer:
- Invisible-in-the-canal – this hearing device rests completely and invisibly inside the ear canal. It is the smallest of all hearing aids but is still very powerful and full-featured.
- In-the-canal – devices that may not be invisible but are small, compact and full featured.
- In-the-ear – devices work mainly in the ear canal but have a portion containing amplification in the outer ear.
- Behind-the-ear – these styles vary in size and type. They have a tube connected from the battery outside the ear to the receiver/amplifier in the ear. Depending on your needs, the outside-the-ear portion could include an earmold.
Using appropriate hearing protection products is probably the most effective way to fight hearing loss. While it is not the only reason for loss, exposure to loud noise is considered a top reason people lose hearing, along with aging. Exposure over a long period of years will result in hearing loss.
Hearing protection comes in the form of earplugs, earmolds and earphones. Specialized protection like musicians plugs and phones let more sound enter the ear than powerful sound-preventing ones.
Hearing Aid Products and Accessories by Manufacturer
Like most electronic products, each category offers custom designs. All hearing devices are fitted to the individual; this is one of the most important points about having your device properly fitted and tuned. People can buy hearing aids online without knowing how they fit or how they work. It is always advised that you see a qualified specialist for your purchases.
The Oticon Opn hearing aid uses the latest technology to help users hear clear speech. This behind-the-ear unit is a powerful Bluetooth-enabled device that allows listeners to distinguish two or more speakers in a crowd.
The Alta2 premium hearing aid is another powerful choice, offered in several styles from in-the-ear to behind-the-ear from Oticon. This style features binaural noise management and wireless synchronization.
Oticon’s latest hearing accessory is the ConnectClip™, a small wireless connection device that “transforms your hearing aids into a wireless stereo headset. Using and adjusting your devices with a cellphone is the latest technology to make better hearing easier every day.
Bluetooth Hearing Aids
Developers of hearing aids are always looking for new and improved ways of making hearing aids better and more useful in people's lives. Bluetooth technology is being used to make it easier for hearing aid users to connect their hearing aids to various devices for improved sound quality directly from the sound source.
Cell phone accessories
Although the FCC now requires that hearing aid compatible (HAC) cell phones meet strict guidelines for quality, some hearing aid users wish to further improve their cell phone experience. Add-on devices and cell phone accessories can make cell phones even more compatible with hearing aids.
Many cell phones can be used with hearing aid telecoils. Hearing aid accessories that provide a hands-free option may also be helpful.
One complaint from hearing aid users is the difficulty of replacing small batteries. A new product available from Phonak is a rechargeable hearing aid – the CROS B-R. CROS technology allows hearing and understanding from any direction. These devices automatically switch to a setting that matches your listening situation so that one or both ears better hear speech.
Also in the Phonak line: Virto™ B, Virto B Titanium and Bolero™ B. The first is biometrically calibrated to fit your ear structure better than was previously possible; the Virto B Titanium is ultra-light and very small, fitting in the ear canal; the Bolero B is a behind the ear unit designed to automatically mask noise and recognize speech.
Rechargeable Hearing Aids
Check out our rechargeable hearing aids that feature high-quality noise reduction at a price that fits your budget!
This company provides hearing aids for a range of hearing losses. Behind-the-ear units are specially designed to connect with cellphones. In-the-ear hearing aids are designed to be invisible. The company also makes simple hearing amplifiers and a hearing aid designed to help tinnitus, or ringing in the ears. One of the most effective treatments for tinnitus is providing background noise that cancels the ringing effect to a degree.
Starkey also makes hearing aids with CROS technology, helping you hear in your stronger and weaker ear: the Starkey Muse™ iQ.
The Widex EVOKE™ is the world’s first “smart” hearing aid. It interacts with your environment and electronically learns to adjust to noisy environments. The EVOKE has a smartphone connection that uses SoundSense to learn the difference between a meeting and party, for instance. Data helps the overall programming of the device over time.
Widex offers the BEYOND™ behind-the-ear aid made exclusively for the iPhone, and BEYOND Z which is rechargeable.
Visit or call Advanced Hearing Care today to find out more about all our hearing aid choices, or make an appointment as your first step toward better hearing.