Today, there seems to be a stigma around the “look” of hearing aids. Studies show on average patients adopt hearing aids ten years after noticing a hearing problem. This may be due to fear of visibility.
As providers, we often think of the benefits of technology rather than cosmetic concerns. We acknowledge, however, that this is a frequent concern of our patients. The good news is that hearing aids are becoming more and more cosmetically appealing and look very different from hearing aids made 15-20 years ago. Many patients still think hearing aids look like what their parents wore, but that is no longer the case.
The style we most frequently recommend to our patients, a Receiver in the Canal hearing aid or “RIC”, is a two-part system. There is a small colored piece that hides behind the ear and a very thin wire that goes into the ear canal. With many color options the patient can match the hearing aid to their skin or hair color. Additionally, the thin wire sits right up against the skin, making it difficult to see. This style is nearly invisible from a front and side view. It is frequently recommended for its sound quality, durability, battery life and ease of use.
There are also one-piece, custom styles; one of which is made to be invisible. The Invisible in the Canal (IIC) hearing aid is custom-made for you and goes deep into the ear canal to hide in the natural shadow of your ear. While this hearing aid certainly isn’t right for every type of hearing loss it is an option for some of our patients as long as they are aware of the potential limitations.
A Doctor of Audiology can help you find a style that fits your hearing needs and cosmetic preferences! To schedule a free consultation with one of our Doctors of Audiology, contact Gardner Audiology at 800-277-1182 or email@example.com