Lifetime Hearing Clinic

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Should You Choose BTE or ITE Hearing Aids

Hearing Aid Selection

For those suffering from hearing loss, choosing a hearing aid can be a difficult decision. After all, it’s not one to be taken lightly. Not only will an individual wear the hearing aids for around seven years, they will also spend quite a bit of money on them; the average pair of hearing aids costs between $2000-6000.

Choosing the right hearing aid can be a stress-free decision if you know what you’re getting into. As such, the best way to start in the decision-making process is to know the types of hearing aids available. There are two main styles of hearing aids available: behind the ear hearing aids and in the ear hearing aids.

Behind-the-ear hearing aids

BTE hearing aids consist of two parts: a hard plastic case worn behind the ear and a plastic earmold that fits inside the ear. The hard plastic case is connected to the plastic earmold through tubing. The electronic parts of the hearing aid are housed in the case that sits behind the ear. Sound travels from the hearing aid through the earmold and into the ear.

People who would benefit from BTE hearing aids typically have mild-to-profound hearing loss.

Inside-the-ear hearing aids

ITE hearing aids fit completely inside the outer ear. Unlike BTE hearing aids, they are more sidcreet and can be so small that other people cannot see them. ITE hearing aids include a case, which holds the electronic components made of hard plastic. Some ITE hearing aids include additional features, such as a telecom, which allows users to receive sound through the circuitry of the hearing aid, rather than through its microphone. The telecoil enables people to hear with their hearing aids better when talking on the telephone.

ITE hearing aids can also come with induction loops. Induction loop systems are found in many public places, including theaters, museums and airports. ITE hearing aids are for best for people with mild to severe hearing loss. Unlike BTE hearing aids, ITE hearing aids are not recommended for children, because the casings would be required to be changed too often.

When determining which hearing aid is the best for you, talk in detail with your audiologist about their recommendations. Your audiologist will consider your lifestyle, hearing loss and budget needs when determining the best hearing aids for you.