Smaller behind-the-ear hearing aids in which sound travels from the instrument through a small tube to the speaker in your ear canal, but it leaves the ear open — so there isn’t a ‘plugged up’ feeling some people experience with other hearing aids. Open Canal Mini-BTEs are best for mild to moderate high-frequency hearing loss where low-frequency hearing is still normal.
Housed in a small curved case that fits behind your ear and is attached by a narrow bit of tubing to a custom earpiece molded to fit your outer ear, BTEs are the largest, most visible type of hearing aid. But the newer models are slimmer and barely visible. These are typically the strongest hearing aids and are appropriate for almost all types of hearing loss and for people of all ages.
Fitting directly into the external part of your ear, their size makes them visible, but it also makes them easier to insert and adjust. ITEs are most helpful for people with mild to severe hearing loss.
Fitting partially within your ear canal and barely visible, ITCs small size makes them nearly invisible, but adjusting them can be more difficult. Many of these models come with remote controls to make adjusting them easier. ITCs are used for adults with mild to moderately severe hearing loss.
Molded to fit deeply within your ear canal, CICs are the smallest and least visible types of hearing aid. Because they’re sheltered within the ear, it helps cut down on wind noise. CICs can help improve mild to moderate hearing loss in adults.
A new option is the Invisible In the Canal (IIC) hearing aid, which is the latest solution for patients needing a hearing aid that no one else can see. This particular hearing aid is smaller than the CIC, and goes deeper into the ear canal.