Choosing the hearing aid that is right for you or someone close to you can seem intimidating, especially considering the variety of hearing aid options available.This article explains more about open fit hearing aids, a design that is quickly growing in popularity among those with hearing loss.
If you are already familiar with behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aids, you will find that open fit hearing aids have numerous similarities. 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. The open fit design allows low frequency sounds to enter the ear without being amplified. This allows many people with mild to moderate hearing loss who are still able to hear low frequency sounds to have a more comfortable and natural experience. It also prevents wearers from hearing their own chewing, coughing, and speaking, reducing distraction and adding further comfort.
Open fit hearing aids are smaller than many other devices, which for many is another advantage. Unlike other types of hearing aids, this style is small enough to easily disguise, making them a great choice for users who may be self-conscious about needing a hearing aid.
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. 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.
Open fit hearing aids may have their flaws, but they are still a great choice for many users. Check in with your hearing professional to learn more about this popular and unobtrusive style of hearing aid.