Finding the hearing aid that is right for you or your loved one can be overwhelming, especially with the variety of hearing aid models available. The next few paragraphs will describe more about one kind of hearing aid that is becoming increasingly popular: open fit hearing aids.
Open fit hearing aids share many similarities with behind-the-ear devices. The visible similarities include the plastic case that rests behind the ear and the small tube that connects to the ear canal. Both the case and the tube tend to be smaller than the ones found on behind-the-ear hearing aids.
The factor that differentiates open fit hearing aids from the rest is that their design allows the ear to stay ventilated. The open fit design allows low frequency sounds to enter the ear without being amplified. Because many people with mild to moderate hearing loss have no trouble hearing low frequency sounds, this lack of amplification leads to a more comfortable and natural experience. For the wearer, this means that distracting sounds such as your own chewing or coughing are not amplified resulting in greater comfort and satisfaction.
The smaller size of the open fit hearing aid is another advantage. Many users are able to disguise these devices, making them a favorite among listeners who are self-conscious about having to use a hearing aid.
Individuals with severe hearing loss are not good candidates for the open fit hearing aids. Its open construction means that the amplification levels required to meet the needs of severely impaired hearing often result in feedback noise. Individuals with poor dexterity or fine motor skills may find it difficult to operate these small devices. Because of its small size, this device uses very small batteries, potentially making regular changes or recharges necessary.
Although there may be some disadvantages to the open fit hearing aid, they are the perfect choice for many hearing aid wearers. Check in with your hearing professional to learn more about this popular and unobtrusive style of hearing aid.