Hearing Aids and Invisibility

Hearing aids come in many shapes, styles and sizes, let us find the perfect match for you.

Micro Hearing Instruments

Micro behind-the-ear hearing aids are nearly invisible. Most everything we buy today is smaller than products made just a few years ago. Hearing aids are no exception. Micro behind-the-ear instruments offer the same level of performance as their larger counterparts while providing a more appealing cosmetic alternative.

Several major manufacturers have reduced the size of conventional BTEs by as much as 40%.

These units were originally designed to fit mild to moderate high-frequency hearing losses. The main problem for people with this type of loss is that they often hear their own voices as if they were listening in a barrel. Micro hearing aids keep the ear canal open and unoccluded, overcoming this “barrel” complaint to allow you to hear speech clearly and more naturally.

Higher power micro instruments fit losses up to 90% in all frequency ranges, enabling hearing aid users with severe to profound losses to experience outstanding hearing performance in a tiny package. As you can see in the photo, the micro product is only slightly larger than the tip of your finger.

If you experience the barrel effect, are self-conscious about the size of your current hearing aids or just want to upgrade your older hearing system, we encourage you to consider trying micro products today.

Invisible-In-The-Ear Hearing Instruments

I have some news about a recently released product for current patients and those who need hearing aids but have chosen not to wear them. The leading manufacturers have developed an invisible-in-the-canal (IIC) instrument.

This design has been the demand of many in the public eye (actors, for example) and others who, for one reason or another, want an unnoticeable solution for their hearing loss. The outermost portions of IIC products lie out of sight, about half an inch inside the ear canal, so they are completely invisible. IIC instruments are not like the extended wear hearing aids that I have discussed in other articles (see: “Should You Consider Extended Wear Hearing Aids?” on the Hearing Aids—Info section of my website). The new devices are removed nightly and are cared for and stored in the same way as all in-the-ear style hearing aids.

The factories recommend IIC units for those who have a mild to moderate hearing loss and an ear canal of “normal” size and shape. Very narrow, irregularly shaped or child-size ear canals will not allow for placement of the components into the canal. Therefore, patients with ear canals of this type are not suitable candidates for an IIC.

Many of you have expressed an interest in an invisible product that offers superior performance. To find out if IICs will work for you, come on in and see us. During your appointment, I will gladly measure a casting of your ear and determine whether you are a candidate.

The Power of Today’s Hearing Aids

It is understandable for people to think that today’s hearing aids are not superior to those sold three or four years ago. The fact is, however, technology has recently soared.

To illustrate these improvements, I would like to share a true story.

A new patient visited my office having been discouraged by his past experiences with hearing instruments. This gentleman had worked in the entertainment industry for many years. He had used several different sets of hearing aids, but none ever provided him with the solution he yearned for. He complained that his own voice sounded hollow, and he never understood speech in noisy environments. Furthermore, he reported that he had to “fake it all the time” when speaking with colleagues. His assistants would take notes and pass on the information to him in written form so he could stay in communication with his co-workers, or they would repeat what was said after the conversation was over.

After a thorough evaluation of his hearing loss, I recommended the most advanced completely-in-the-canal hearing instruments from a leading manufacturer. Two weeks later, at the initial fitting, he and his wife were astounded how well he could understand speech in quiet and when background noise was present. At his first follow-up session, he reported that he no longer had to rely on his assistants to fill him in about happenings at work. He was able to understand everything at home, on television and even had no difficulties when attending a “monster truck” show in a closed arena. Life had completely transformed for this gentleman. He had become more productive on the job, the stress he had been experiencing had virtually disappeared, and he made life easier for those with whom he interacted.

All state-of-the-art instruments help to restore the quality of hearing you need to enjoy listening to and participating in life again. Feel free to give us a call to schedule a demonstration.

Entry and Mid-Level Digital Hearing Aids

We realize that not everyone can easily fit high-end hearing aids into their budgets. For those of you who are in this category, entry-level and mid-level digital hearing aids are available at considerably lower prices.

These instruments have many of the performance features of the more expensive premium digital products. Due to technological advancements, they will also work significantly better than units manufactured a few years ago that were once the standard of the industry.

If you are using hearing aids that are over four years old, it is likely that you can hear fairly well in most quiet listening environments. Yet, you probably experience difficulty hearing and understanding when background noise is present. All of the current digital processors are capable of distinguishing speech from other background noises. By coding sounds, the hearing aids instantly decide whether to amplify or suppress them. Hence, you get the advantage of improved understanding in difficult listening situations.

The purchase of entry-level or mid-level instruments will give you considerably better hearing while taking a smaller bite out of your checkbook. To help those of you who prefer to finance your purchase, we are signed on with CareCredit (a division of GE Credit). Their most popular option is a twelve-month, no-interest plan (on approved credit) which allows those who qualify to spread payments out over a year without incurring interest charges.

Call Hearing Aid Services of Hollywood at (323) 463-7109 for more information or to schedule your appointment today.

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