Types of Hearing Aid Technology

Just as there are many types of people with a wide variety of needs and wants, there is also an excellent variety of hearing aids to suit.  The following offers a brief overview.  For more details about what will work the best for you book a hearing test and consultation with a hearing instrument practitioner near you today.

Economy

This type of hearing aid is excellent for one to one conversations, watching television and listening in quiet settings.  A nice simple automatic hearing aid.

Basic

This hearing aid has the ability to focus on sounds in front of you while suppressing steady background noises like traffic, lawn mowers and fans. A very good choice for quiet lifestyles which include occasional outings in a small group or crowd.

Standard

An excellent choice for people who participate in activities like meetings, eating out, church and family gatherings. Includes adaptive directional microphones to help you focus on the conversation in front of you.

Advanced

Designed to provide excellent performance in a broad range of demanding listening environments that include moderate levels of varying background noise. These hearing aids often provide ear to ear sound processing that enables the built in computer know which voices to focus on and help reject voices and sounds you don’t want to hear. These hearing aids include adaptive directional microphones and are available with remote control.

Premium 

Maximum performance and optimum flexibility for people who are in a broad range of demanding listening environments daily including high levels of competing background noise and voices. These hearing aids provide premium ear to ear processing (the hearing aids work together to focus on the voice that you want to hear and rejecting unwanted voices), automatic directional microphones and fully automatic sound processing. Also available with remote controls.

Accessories

Volume control, the use of volume controls on hearing aids in the past 7 years has decreased as the technology levels and fitting skills of practitioners have risen.  They are still available however it is worth noting that in many fittings little to no volume adjustments may be required.

Waxguards.  With the advent of precision plastic molding hearing aids now come available with reasonably easy to change waxguards.  These devices allow you to more efficiently clean and maintain your hearing aids.

Telecoil  A telecoil is an option that is available in ITE/BTE/some RIC-Open fit.  A telecoil is an option which couples your hearing aid to most telephones that have an electro-magnetic speaker or telecoil equipped cell phones.

Blue-tooth compatible.  These hearing aids can couple to cell phones, some home phones and other devices to provide clear, background noise free coupling.  In many hearing aids you will be able to talk on the phone using both ears to listen (which in some cases enables you hear better than people with normal hearing).

Streamers are devices which take the signal from your television or computer and send it directly into your hearing aids.  This enables you to shut off the sounds of the room and hear the television clearly.  Some people enjoy hearing the television from another room while preparing a snack during commercials!

Remote controls can be handy for some people who wish to control their hearing aids.  These controls include volume up/down, streaming on/off, cell phone coupling, accessing optimized settings for listening environments like the car/work/worship/entertainment and more.

iPhone and Smartphones can be used with some hearing aid technologies providing you with automatic phone communication, automatic tuning, lost hearing aid location, and a host of other options available through apps.