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How to Choose Digital Hearing Aids

Updated on June 12, 2011
BTE hearing aid
BTE hearing aid

Hearing aid is an electronic device to help people with poor hearing or loss hearing. It amplifies sound from outside to compensate for poor hearing. Hearing aid is not restore the damaged hearing back to normal and not the only solution to overcome loss of hearing. It is more like rehabilitation program of the decrease hearing.

Type of hearing aid based on voice processing technology :

1. Analog
Analog hearing aid strengthens the voice in accordance with the waveforms but usually less of flexibility in helping the wearer. Analog technology is the technology that has been around for many decades. Analog technology is basic technology and offers limited adjustment capability. It is the least expensive and the least flexible.

2. Programmable
Programmable hearing aid is analog hearing aid that digitally controlled by the computer in the office to adjust the sounds of the hearing aid and more flexible than the usual analog.

3. Digital
Digital hearing aid converts the analog signal into digital signal, which can be modified by the computer to adjust the circumstances and noise and help the wearer with clear sound. It's the most sophisticated hearing aid and gives the audiologist a maximum control over sound quality and sound processing characteristics.

Hearing Aid Styles

1. Pocket Aid
It is the hearing aid that is usually kept in the pocket. This style is very simple and great for elder people.
2. Behind The Ear (BTE)
It is the hearing aid that is worn behind the ear. Consist of a hard plastic case connected to a plastic earmold that fits inside the outer ear. This is the largest hearing aid and is appropriate for all types of hearing loss and for people of all ages.

It is the most visible of hearing aid and is capable of more amplification than other styles.

3. In The Ear (ITE)
There are four types of In The Ear hearing aid ;
a. CIC (Completely In Canal)
This hearing aid is very tiny and really fits in the ear canal. CIC used to be worn for mild and moderate hearing loss, but now the technology is developing so CIC can be worn for severe hearing loss.

But the CIC is so tiny and may be difficult for the wearer to adjust and remove. This device is not suitable for young wearer like young children.

b. MC (Mini Canal)
The size of Mini Canal is a little bit bigger than the CIC and it has a bigger volume control. The wearer still has opportunity to enjoy the smallest possible hearing aid with manual control over the volume and other possibly controls.

c. ITC (In The Canal)
This device has a bigger battery than CIC and MC. It helps people with severe hearing loss.

d. ITE (In The Ear)
It's the most comfortable, not expensive and easy to operate. This device helps people with severe hearing loss. Because the voice is quite strong and has bigger battery than ITC.

4. Spectacle
This is a glasses hearing aid. These combine digital hearing aids into the arms of spectacles or glasses. I think it's cool for people that don't like to wear the usual type of hearing aid.

Spectacle hearing aid
Spectacle hearing aid

Things to consider in choosing digital hearing aid :
First, we should ask the audiologist or professional guide. Which digital hearing aid is best for me.

What features would be most useful for me. Consider how severe the damaged of hearing, the more severe, you may need digital hearing aid with many features and bigger battery.

The cost. Price is the important thing to consider. Digital hearing aids could be very expensive, from hundreds to thousand dollars. But it does not mean the more expensive the hearing aid has the better quality.

The most important thing is you, the wearer, select the hearing aid that most suitable and easy to use for you.


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    • febriedethan profile image

      febriedethan 7 years ago from Indonesia

      @Hello,hello, I'm so glad if this will help you, good luck!

      @Dave Mathews, yes, I like the glasses style too, thank you for visiting!

    • Dave Mathews profile image

      Dave Mathews 7 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

      Thank you for this information. I too like the ones that are also glasses as well as the ones Ite. or Itc. as they are most effective.

      Brother Dave.

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 7 years ago from London, UK

      Great, detailed information which was interesting for me because I do need a hearing aid.