Looking for the best hearing aids will expose you to a number of different styles, including receiver-in-canal (RIC). There are a number of benefits unique to RIC units, in addition to many commonalities with behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aids. This article explores some of the main benefits and drawbacks of the receiver in canal hearing aid model.
In behind-the-ear and in-the-ear hearing aids, the device’s components are all held in the same case: either behind the ear or in the ear. RIC hearing aids, on the other hand, separate the components into two major sections. The case behind the ear contains the amplifier and microphone. The receiver is separate in a small bud which fits in the ear canal. A small tube connects the receiver to the case.
Separating the receiver from the rest of the device has a number of advantages. Compared to other hearing aid styles, RIC hearing aid wearers have fewer problems with feedback. They also report fewer problems stemming from occlusion of the ear canal. Listeners also enjoy a more natural sound, making the listening experience much more comfortable. High-pitched tones are amplified particularly well, making receiver in canal hearing aids very suitable for individuals suffering from mild to moderate hearing loss.
The physical configuration of RIC devices also provides a number of advantages. Because it is split in two parts, this type of hearing aid is unobtrusive and easy to obscure. Its small size also allows it to fit very comfortably in and on the ear.
Receiver in canal devices do have several disadvantages. Compared to other types of hearing aids, RIC aids are particularly vulnerable to moisture in the ear, necessitating frequent repairs. Because they are so comfortable they are actually easier to lose: if you are not used to feeling them in your ear, you may not notice when they are gone. Lastly, this style of hearing aid is often higher in price than its cousins, so some shoppers may have difficulty fitting them into their budgets.
Receiver-in-ear hearing aids do have their flaws, but their numerous advantages make them a worthwhile choice for many listeners. Your hearing specialist would be happy to answer all your questions about different hearing aid styles and help you choose the best design.