There are two main types of hearing aids; Behind-the-ear (BTE) and In-the-ear (ITE).
Each hearing aid comes with the same technology options – so you pay for the technology level, not the type of hearing aid.
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Just as the name implies, this type of hearing aid has the main hearing aid mechanism sitting behind your ear. There is a thin cord which transmits the sound into the receiver which amplifies sound, so you can hear it.
There are two options for the location of the receiver:
- Receiver-in-canal (RIC) – with this model, the housing is placed behind the ear and the receiver or loudspeaker is directly in the ear. This maintains power while reducing size.
- Receiver-in-the-ear (RITE) – very similar to the RIC, however, the receiver is not placed as deeply in the ear.
In ITE hearing aids, all electronic components are completely contained within a casing that fits directly into the ear. The size of the ITE depends on the degree of your hearing loss and the shape of your ear canals.
There are three types of ITE hearing aids:
- In-the-canal (ITC) – this model sits in the canal, usually less of the hearing aid is visible.
- Completely-in-canal (CIC) – the CIC are very small and placed deep into the ear canal and are therefore almost invisible.
- Invisible-in-canal (IIC) – these are placed deep into the ear canal and as the name implies, are invisible.
The severity of hearing loss and size of your ear canal can dictate which hearing aid is the right one for you, but in most cases you are able to choose which one will best suit your lifestyle.
Read more: 5 ways a hearing aid can positively impact your life