Hearing Aid Basics

By AOO on December 28, 2017 under Hearing, Hearing Aids, Hearing Loss

Hearing Aid Basics

Is your hearing loss making you feel left out of social conversations and causing miscommunication? If so, it might be time to consider a hearing aid to improve your daily life.

What is a Hearing Aid?

A hearing aid is a small electronic device made up of a microphone, amplifier, and speaker. The device can be worn discreetly behind or in your ear. The microphone can pick up on sounds even in quiet situations and is made louder with the amplifier. The signals are then sent to the ear through the speaker, allowing you to hear things more clearly.

How Can Hearing Aids Help?

Hearing loss occurs when hair cells in the inner ear become damaged. This damage can be a result of overexposure to loud noise, an injury, disease, certain medication, or just an effect of age. A hearing aid can benefit those with hearing loss in one or both ears by creating larger sound vibrations for the undamaged hair cells to detect. To find out if a hearing aid could help your hearing loss, a trip to an ENT specialist for an exam and hearing test is recommended.

Different Types of Hearing Aids

There are several different types of hearing aids on the market. Behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aids consist of a plastic case worn behind the ear containing the electrical pieces of the hearing aid. The case connects to an earmold that fits comfortably inside the outer ear. This type of hearing aid is used to help mild to severe hearing loss in people of all ages.

In-the-ear (ITE) hearing aids consist of a plastic case that fits inside the outer ear. This type of hearing aid can include other features to help hear through a telephone or special sound systems used in certain facilities. ITE hearing aids are not usually worn by children due to their growing ears but can help with mild to severe hearing loss in all other ages.

In-the-canal (ITC) and completely-in-the-canal (CIC) are discreet hearing aids that fit inside the ear canal. An ITC hearing aid fits the shape and size of the ear canal, where a CIC hearing aid is hidden inside the ear canal. These hearing aids can help with your mild to moderate loss of hearing but are not recommended for those with severe hearing loss because of their restrictions when it comes to volume and power.

Choosing a Hearing Aid

Choosing the right hearing aid for you will depend on the severity of your hearing loss and your needs and lifestyle. An appointment with one of our certified audiologists in Denver & Lone Tree can help you decide which type of hearing aid will benefit you the most. To schedule your appointment at Associates of Otolaryngology, contact us today!