Comparing hearing aids can be difficult if you are unfamiliar with the numerous abbreviations commonly used to describe popular types. The following list encompasses the majority of the abbreviations you will encounter when looking for hearing aids and presents a short description of each. The most effective approach to really grasp the differences is to compare them in-person, therefore if any of these explanations are not clear, please call us to visit and explore the various alternatives.
The following hearing aid styles are given in alphbetical order
- Behind the Ear (BTE) – Suitable for mild to severe hearing losses, the BTE hearing aid’s larger external case makes more features feasible and is a superb option for anyone with poor finger dexeterity. All of the components are inside the external case which is worn behind the ear. BTE hearing aids come in wide range of colors. The BTE type is frequently used for children for safety and growth reasons.
- Completely in Canal (CIC) – Appropriate for mild to moderate hearing losses, the CIC type fits inside the ear canal making it nearly invisible. Because of its compact size, the Completely in Canal hearing aid typically has fewer features. For example, the Completely in Canal style doesn’t offer directional microphones.
- Deep Canal (DC) – Appropriate for mild to moderate hearing losses, the DC design fits deep inside the ear canal making it invisible. It provides less occlusion than other models but isn’t appropriate for all patients particularly individuals with a narrow ear canal. Because of its small size, the Deep Canal hearing aid typically has fewer features. For example, the Deep Canal style doesn’t have space for directional microphones.
- Extended Wear Hearing Aids – Extended wear hearing aids are positiioned in the ear canal by a hearing professional. These devices are worn for 1-3 months at a time without removal.
- Half Shell (HS) – Appropriate for mild to severe hearing losses, the Half Shell is a custom molded hearing aid that fits inside the ear canal and is partially visiblefrom the outside. Being somewhat larger than the designs which fit further into in the ear canal, additional benefits such as directional microphones are feasible with the Half Shell style.
- In the Ear (ITE) – Suitable for mild to severe hearing losses, the In-the-Ear style of hearing aid is a good choice for an array of hearing losses and is very easy to handle. The ITE is visible inside the ear, but its larger size offers more functionality, more power and an extended battery life.
- In the Canal (ITC) – Appropriate for mild to moderately-severe hearing losses, the In-the-Canal style is a compact hearing aid which fits inside the ear canal and is visible from the outside. Being slightly larger than the models which fit deeper in the ear canal, directional microphones are possible with the In-the-Canal style.
- Invisible in Canal (IIC) – The IIC type of hearing aid fits fully inside the ear canal and is invisible from the outside. IIC styles are typically not suggested for the elderly, yet are a wonderful option in middle age.
- Open Ear / Open Fit – Appropriate for mild to moderately-severe hearing losses, the Open Fit (also called Open Ear) model combines an external hearing aid case that fits behind the ear and a clear tube inserted into the ear. The Open Fit model leaves the ear canal open for natural sound quality and is available in various color options.
- Receiver In the Ear (RITE) or (RIE) – Appropriate for mild to moderately-severe hearing losses, the RIE/RITE design is the smallest among the hearing aids work externally. The RIE/RITE type brings together a tiny case that sits behind the ear and a receiver positioned inside the ear attached by a flexible tube. The ear canal is open for natural sound quality.