Is An Invisible Hearing Aid Right For Me?

Woman with an invisible hearing aid | A Better Ear

There can be a stigma around wearing hearing aids. People may have hesitations around wearing them as they often believe it is a sign of aging. Others just don’t like the way they look. As technology advances, however, the size of hearing aids has begun to drastically reduce to the point where they are nearly invisible. The traditional hearing aid will sit around your ear with the receiver and battery sitting in a housing located behind your ear, known as behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aids. These days, however, hearing aids are small enough to fit entirely in your ear canal, known as in-the-ear (ITE) hearing aids. There are various types of ITE, and while only one is strictly “invisible” there are others that are discreet enough to warrant consideration when choosing your hearing aid. 

Types of ITE Hearing Aids

Invisible-In-The-Canal (IIC) and Completely-In-The-Canal (CIC)

IIC (also known as Micro-CIC) and CIC are very similar in design. IIC hearing aids fit deep within the ear canal at the second bend and are very discreet, being near invisible to other people. CIC hearing aids fit about one to two millimetres inside the aperture of the ear canal, these are still difficult to see due to being hidden by the tragus. 

The benefits of IICs and CICs are they use the natural shape of the ear to collect sound and provide a natural listening experience without the need for directional microphones. But unfortunately, while being custom fit, not all ear canals will be large enough for IIC or CIC hearing aids, your audiologist will measure you up and advise you accordingly.

Due to their small size, however, they carry the smallest available speakers which limit the output of the devices. This means they tend to be more suitable for mild to moderate hearing loss. The small size of the device also limits the technology, meaning features such as wireless connectivity will be missing. They also run on very small batteries, which need replacing every 2-3 days.

The size of IIC and CIC hearing aids can also mean they are difficult to manipulate and as such the wearer’s dexterity does need to be taken into consideration. There are also limitations due to their being prone to ear wax and moisture damage. Extra care is required to ensure they are maintained in optimal condition.

In-The-Canal (ITC)

ITC hearing aids, as the name suggests, also sit in the ear canal however they protrude past the tragus. This means they are more visible than IIC or CIC hearing aids, which can be a deterrent for some. 

That being said, they can be made to match your skin tone and therefore are not obvious to others unless they know what to look for, or they can be coloured black to look like wireless earbuds. The greater size offers space for a larger speaker, meaning they are suitable for greater hearing loss. The bigger casing also allows for more features including directional microphones, wireless connectivity, and lithium-ion batteries for rechargeability.

More To Consider… A Better Ear Can Help

Some people love them for their reduced profile, some people love them for comfort and secure fit. ICE and CIC Some people love them for their reduced profile, some people love them for comfort and secure fit. ITE and CIC hearing aids offer good sound quality thanks to the seal they form within the ear canal, and they look great. If you are unsure or would like more information, speak to us today at A Better Ear. We can give you all the necessary information so you can make an informed choice. We can also measure and fit you to the most suitable product based on your needs and desires.