Analog Hearing Aid Devices
Analog hearing aids simplify sound simply by making the continuous sound wave larger. There are two types of analog hearing aids.
- Conventional Analog: specifications are prescribed by the hearing care professional and built into the hearing aid by the manufacturer. Fine tuning can be done manually in the office, but the hearing professional is limited in the amount and degree of adjustments that can be made.
- Programmable Analog: can be adjusted or modified in the office using a computer in lieu of factory or manual adjustment, allowing for more flexibility in adjusting the hearing aid. These devices cost more than conventional analog aids and sometimes have the added feature of a remote control or multiple response programs for use in different listening environments.
Digital Hearing Aid Devices
Digital hearing aids take the continuous sound wave and break it up into tiny pieces of information. This process is called “digitizing.” It allows your hearing care professional to use specialized computer programs to customize your hearing aid to your unique listening needs and provides more complex sound processing.
The more sophisticated digital hearing instruments are able to amplify the softest sounds of speech while at the same time subtracting out certain types of unwanted noises. Also, loudness adjustments are made automatically. These hi-tech devices may be used with a wide range of hearing loss. Although they are the most expensive hearing aids on the market today, due to their sophistication and benefit, they represent the highest percentage of hearing aids sold.
Open Fit/Open Ear Device Styles
The Open Fit device is a small, barely visible, sleek device that sits behind the ear and has very thin tubing that connects the device with a small dome in the ear canal. It is best suited for people with mild to moderate hearing loss in the high frequencies. Open fit devices allow maximum use of natural hearing and provides amplification in frequencies where needed. They are most popular of all devices because of their high comfort, low visibility and immediate fit – you can wear them the same day you are fit.
BTE (Behind-The-Ear) Device Styles
BTE devices rest behind the ear and attach to a custom made earmold. Suitable for all types and degree of hearing loss, a BTE may be required if medical conditions of the ear canal prohibit the use of other devices.
ITE (In-The-Ear) Device Styles
ITE devices are custom made and fill the concha (bowl of the ear) and some portion of the ear canal. They are easy to manipulate for those with poor vision or manual dexterity problems and are suitable for those with mild to severe hearing loss.
ITC (In-The-Canal) Device Styles
These devices fit only in the outer portion of the ear canal. ITCs are suitable for those with an adequate sized ear canal, mild-to-moderate hearing loss and no moisture or skin problems in the ear.
CIC (Completely-In-Canal) Device Styles
CICs are the smallest devices available. They require a precise fit as they are seated deeply within the ear canal. CICs require good manual dexterity and a healthy ear canal.
ALDs (Assistive Listening Devices)
In most situations, properly selected hearing aids can resolve the majority of patients’ communication difficulties. However, there may still be select situations such as television viewing, attending the theater or cinema and telephone use where ALD technology is beneficial. ALDs have a wide range of applications for patients with or without hearing aids and include some of the following products:
• Amplified Telephones
• Alarm and Alert Devices
(Alarm Clocks, Smoke Detectors, Telephone Signalers, Doorbell
Alerts, Car Alerts)
• Television Listening Systems
• Personal Listening Systems
ALDs may be discussed during your hearing aid consultation or at a later time. Many ALDs are on display for your viewing and can be purchased at Advanced Hearing Aid Center. Ask your hearing care professional or patient representative for more information about these products.
Hearing Aid Batteries
Premium hearing aid batteries in a variety of sizes are available at all Advanced Hearing Aid Center locations.