St Louis Park, MN
There are several different styles of hearing aids. A patient’s lifestyle is a primary factor in selecting the appropriate type of instrument. Additionally, the degree of a patient’s hearing loss determines the power, frequency and options required to maximize the benefit. Other deciding factors include manual dexterity abilities, cost, and cosmetic concerns.
A patient will make the decision about what type of instrument to use with expert advice. It is important that the patient share their needs and preferences with Dr. Pfaff so that together they can arrive at the best solution. Dr. Pfaff is accustomed to guiding this discussion and helping his patients make the right choices.
The most common hearing aid styles are listed below:
BTE (Behind-the-Ear) Products
These products are the most popular hearing solution. While BTE models of the past were often cosmetically unappealing, features of modern BTE aids greatly minimize these concerns.
There are two styles of BTE instruments—one where the receiver (speaker) is in the ear canal (RITE), or one where the receiver is inside the instrument (Ear Hook).
RITE (Receiver-in-the-Ear) Products
All RITE solutions have their electronics, battery and microphone inside a casing worn behind the ear. An ultra thin, sculpted wire carries the amplified sound to a speaker that fits in the ear canal. Receiver-in-the-Ear technology works well for hearing losses ranging from mild to severe.
BTE with Ear Hook
BTEs with ear hooks are connected to the ear canal via plastic tubing. The tubing is attached to an ear mold which is custom made from and ear impression to perfectly replicate the size and shape of the patient’s ear. Most BTEs with ear hooks can be fitted with a cosmetically appealing thin tube solution.
BTE with Ear Hook advantages:
These products are made from a customized impression of the patient’s ear. They come in a variety of sizes with the largest known as ITE (In the Ear,) the mid size models as ITC (In the Canal,) and the smallest are known as CIC (Completely in the Canal). Patients have a choice of technology in this category of products, ranging from basic to advanced. The fitting and capabilities of these products are determined on an individual basis after evaluation of patient circumstances, attributes and ear size.