CHOOSING A HEARING AID

Hearing loss is individual and so is your hearing solution.

At All Ears in Hearing, after assessing your hearing, we will discuss your hearing needs and set some goals on what you would like to achieve by wearing hearing aids. We work with you to choose a hearing instrument that is suitable for your hearing loss, listening needs, personal tastes and budget.

We offer a broad range of devices, ranging from basic technology to the most advanced technology available and are not affiliated with any one manufacturer, so you can be assured that you will get what is best suited to you. We make it easy for you by explaining the features and how they benefit you, so you can be confident that you have made the right decision.

It’s important to have realistic expectations about hearing devices. They will definitely improve your hearing and provide benefit, but they can’t give you back normal hearing. There will be some situations such as background noise that you will still have difficulty hearing in.

Before choosing a hearing device, there are a number of factors to consider:

1. Degree of Hearing Loss

The degree of hearing loss influences the style of hearing aid that will give maximum benefit. It is usually only mild to moderate hearing losses that will suit the tiny aids that sit deep down in the ear canal. A more severe hearing loss is best suited to a behind-the-ear device as these instruments provide more amplification.

2. Technology

Hearing aid technology ranges from basic to sophisticated. The basic technology will make a significant difference in helping you to communicate with others. However, some models don’t have features that will help you in difficult listening situations such as background noise. These more advanced features help make your listening experience much more enjoyable. At All Ears in Hearing, we are happy to explain and demonstrate these different features to you.

3. Handling

The smaller the device, the smaller the batteries and controls. If you have vision difficulties or problems with your fingers, a larger device may be easier to handle

4. Style

Hearing aids come in a range of sizes and colours to suit individual hearing loss and personal taste. The basic styles are in-the-ear and behind-the-ear. Behind-the-ear hearing aids are worn behind the ear and are connected to an ear mould or dome by a plastic tube. In-the-ear instruments are custom made to the shape or your ear and ear canal. All the electronic components are built into the shell.

IIC / CIC

The invisible-in-the-canal devices are the smallest devices and are so small that they are barely visible when worn. This style is usually suited for mid-moderate hearing loss. The completely-in-the-canal device is one of the smallest device available (pictured below left). It sits deep in the ear canal, so it’s virtually invisible when worn. This style is usually only suited to mild to moderate hearing losses.

 

BTE

The behind-the-ear device sits behind the ear (pictured above right & below left). The sound travels from the hearing aid down a small plastic tube connected to a mould or dome that sits in the ear. They range in size from a super power model down to a mini version.

The receiver-in-the-ear device sits behind the ear and the sound travels down a small wire that is connected to a mould or dome that sits in the ear. They range in size and are usually smaller than the traditional BTE style.

ITC

The in-the-canal device (pictured above right) is a bit larger than the CIC and is fairly discreet when worn.

ITE

The in-the-ear hearing aid is the largest of the instruments worn in the ear (pictured below left). This style is good for those who have dexterity problems as being larger it is easier to handle.

Bernafon_2Things_Poster_Portrait

5. One or Two Hearing Instruments

If you have a hearing loss in both ears, than two instruments are definitely better than wearing one.

Sound localization – Have you ever thought why we have two ears? The brain needs to compare information from both ears to tell us which direction sound is coming from. With two hearing aids, you will have a much better sense of direction and be more aware of your surroundings than if you wore one. This is important from a safety point of view, for example crossing the street in traffic or driving.

Easy Listening – When you wear two hearing devices, you do not have to put as much effort into hearing compared to just wearing one.

Better Sound Quality – As the brain has information from both ears, speech will be much clearer.

Stereo Sound – Stereos have two speakers to give music depth. If one speaker is not working, the music may sound dull. Same with your ears. Sounds will have more clarity and depth when you wear two hearing aids.

Better Hearing in Background Noise – Wearing two devices will give the brain more information to work with, making it easier for the brain to separate speech from noise. When fitted with two instruments, less amplification is needed, so background noise is less annoying and the risk of feedback (whistling) is also reduced.

Repairs – If you have two hearing instruments and one needs to be sent for repair, you will still have at least one device.

Auditory Deprivation – This occurs when the ear goes unaided over a long period of time. As the saying goes ‘If you don’t use it, you lose it’. A lack of continued sound stimulation causes the brain to gradually lose its ability to process information from the unaided ear. The earlier you consider wearing a hearing device, the better the chances of reducing the risk of Auditory Deprivation.

6. Cost

Better hearing means a better quality of life, so think of your purchase as an investment for yourself and your loved ones. Hearing devices are available in a range of prices, so no matter what your budget, we can find a model to suit.

If you are an Australian pensioner or holder of a gold or white (hearing specific) repatriation cards, you may be eligible to receive free hearing services including free hearing aids. Click here for further information.

Private health fund rebates may be available depending on your health fund and level of cover. Check with your provider to find out your entitlements.

Links to our Hearing Aid manufacturers