As you look for a hearing aid – either for yourself or a loved one – one of the more popular alternatives you will encounter is the in-the-ear (ITE) style. These hearing aids are a great choice for people with mild to moderate hearing loss as they are small, comfortable, and fit securely in the lower portion of the outer ear. What follow is a summary of the advantages and disadvantages of the in-the-ear hearing aid style.
Each in-the-ear hearing aid is custom made for the wearer because it must fit the exact shape of your ear. If you choose to use this type of device, your hearing professional will use a mold to make sure it fits your ear perfectly. The result is an exceptionally comfortable hearing aid with high sound quality and low feedback. All of the hearing aid components fit inside the case. That means that the in-the-ear hearing aid has no external tubes or wires. This makes them lightweight and easy to wear.
In-the-ear hearing aids have a number of auditory advantages, including their superior ability to pick up on high-frequency sounds. Unlike a behind-the-ear model, these devices can take advantage of the outer ear’s ability to collect and focus high frequency sound waves. ITE devices are also recessed far enough into the ear that headsets and telephones can usually be used normally. The ITE device is very small. Their small size has advantages and disadvantages to consider.
Their small size keeps them from being very obvious, making them a great choice for listeners who are a little self-conscious about wearing a device. However, this small size also causes a short battery life and keeps them from having all the features found in some other devices. People with poor motor control or eyesight problems may have difficulty replacing the battery or operating the controls.
While some users may not find in-the-ear hearing aids ideal, for many others they are the ideal device. A hearing aid specialist can help you evaluate your options and make recommendations based on your needs and preferences.