Choosing the hearing aid that’s right for you or someone close to you can be intimidating, especially considering the variety of hearing aid models available.Read on to learn more about open fit hearing aids, a design that has been rapidly growing in popularity among seniors.
There are many similarities between open fit hearing aids and behind-the-ear models. 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.
Better ventilation to the ear is probably the largest differentiating factor of the open fit hearing aid. This allows low frequency sounds to enter the ear without additional amplification. 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. Further comfort is added by the fact that listeners do not end up hearing their own speaking, coughing, chewing, or other distracting noises.
Another major advantage of open fit hearing aids is their small size. They are a favorite among hearing aid wearers that want to conceal or disguise their device.
Open fit hearing aids do have downsides, particularly for users who have deep hearing loss. Its open construction means that the amplification levels required to meet the needs of severely impaired hearing often result in feedback noise. The hearing aid’s small size can also work against it, as people who do not have fine motor skills often find it difficult to operate such a small device. Additionally, this small hearing aid type requires very small batteries that will need to be changed or charged regularly.
Open fit hearing aids may have their flaws, but they are still a great choice for many users. Consult with your hearing professional to determine if the open fit type of hearing aid may be the best for your unique hearing needs and lifestyle.