Category Archives: Hearing aids

Technology Advancements In Hearing Aids

Post by Ranjitha R. (Audiologist & Speech Therapist)

RECEIVER IN THE CANAL  HEARING AIDS-

Receiver in Canal  RIC Hearing aids are similar to behind the ear (BTE) hearing aid-with one important, but crucial difference. The receiver of the hearing aid is placed in the ear canal of the user  and instead of plastic tube which is used in the BTE hearing aid, thin electrical wires are used.

These are useful for individuals with mild to severe losses.

 

2Reciever in the canal (RIC)

The RIC model consists of three parts

  • The housing/Case- which sits behind the ear
  • Thin ear wire- connecting the housing to the receiver
  • The Receiver-which goes directly in the ear canal

Benefits OF RIC:

‘Open fit’ technology does not plug up the ear like BTE ear molds, offering relief from occlusion.

Because receiver goes inside the ear canal there is small part behind-the-ear and the thin wire connecting the hearing aid to the speaker – this is extremely inconspicuous and for the majority of people, the most cosmetically acceptable hearing aid device.

The sound is smoother and free of distortion as the amplified signal is emitted by the receiver to the ear, rather than through a plastic tube from behind the ear to the ear.

 

INVISIBLE IN THE CANAL; HEARING AIDS

IIC-Invisible hearing aidIf you are a person with hearing loss, but do not wish to wear a hearing aid because of the cosmetic appeal that it gives, try wearing IICs. They are tiny, custom made hearing aids which snugly fits in to your ear canal, that nobody will ever know that you are wearing a hearing aid. IICs make use of the natural acoustics of your ear to give the best sound quality.

iic - CopyAn IIC hearing aid is one in which the faceplate is at or near the second bend of the ear canal, and the tip of the shell is much closer to the eardrum. The deeper  Canal placement of the hearing aid microphone retains some aspects of the ears natural filtering as compared to the behind the ear hearing aid. The performance and cosmetic advantages of this fitting style appeal to a wide variety of hearing aid candidates, many of whom may not consider more visible hearing aid options.

WATER PROOF AND WATER RESISTANT HEARING AIDS

Siemens Waterproof hearing aidPeople with hearing loss has to take some extra precautions for keeping their hearing aids dry especially for individuals who have an active lifestyle ,who heavily perspire  or for people who exercise and need hearing aids to hear instructions or listen to music through Bluetooth transmission.

To make things simpler, manufactures have a few solutions for you.

A water-resistant hearing instrument can withstand the effects of water, perspiration, and other forms of moisture. Water-resistant means it can get wet and stay functional and in some cases can be submersed in a meter of water for up to a half hour.

A“waterproof,” hearing instrument is able to withstand total submersion in water. A waterproof hearing aid can be worn while swimming as long as a special custom ear mold is worn in place of the slim tube.  Waterproof means the hearing aid can endure swimming and other underwater sports for any length of time. Currently few hearing aids meet the standard of waterproof.

REMOTE CONTROL FOR HEARING AIDS

Hearing aid Remote control If you are searching for a more flexible way to operate your hearing aids, a remote control is an ideal choice.

Modern hearing aids are becoming technically advanced and smaller, and a remote control allows you to access hearing aid functions simply and easily. The remote control’s large keys are simple to operate like changing environmental programs, and adjust the volume of sound coming from the environment, or streaming to your hearing aids from TV, PC, phone and more.

To be continued in next post…

Helping hearing impaired: Hear better…

Sensorineural hearing loss may be shocking news to patient and his relatives. Understanding is required to help accept the fact, Talk with your doctor, friends, family and person with same problem to support you.

Most patients are benefited by hearing aids but there is limitation of sound-quality and back ground noise that means it works well in quiet environment but some users have trouble enjoying music and listening in a crowded room.

Hearing impaired person takes time to get used to hearing aid. Assistive listening devices, loop system, FM system, and telephone and mobile amplifying devices help in clarity of sound and music.

Working together to hear better may be tough on everyone. It will take time for hearing impaired person to get used to watching people as they talk and for people to get used to speaking louder and clear.

Be patient and continue to work together.

Treatment and devices for hearing loss

Train your new way of hearing (getting used to hearing aid)

Help from family and friends


What treatments and devices can help?

  • Hearing aids are tiny instruments which make sounds louder.

Quality of hearing aid is of utmost importance and it takes few days to adjust but eventually initial chaotic sound disappear and person is able to appreciate the difference.

  • Personal listening systems help you hear what you want to hear while eliminating other noises around you. Auditory training systems and loop systems make it easier to hear in a crowded room. FM systems and personal amplifiers are better for one-on-one conversations. Improving FM (frequency modulation) boosts the performance of hearing aid.
  • TV listening systems help you listen to the television or the radio without being disturbed by other noises around you. These systems can be used with or without hearing aids.

  • Direct audio input hearing aids are hearing aids that can be plugged into TVs, stereos, microphones, auditory trainers, and personal FM systems to help you hear better.
  • Telephone and mobile amplifying devices. If your hearing aid has a “T” switch, you can use a phone with an amplifying coil (T-coil) or mobile phone with a loop set.  It allows you to listen at a comfortable volume and helps lessen background noise. Special type of telephone receiver and other devices are also available to make sounds louder on the phone.
  • Assistive listening systems. Many auditoriums, movie theaters, churches, synagogues, and other public places are equipped with special sound systems for people with hearing loss. These systems send sounds directly to your ears to help you hear better.
  • Lip reading or speech reading is another option.

How to train your new way of hearing (getting used to hearing aid)

Hearing aid is not same as natural hearing but with few weeks of regular use person usually adapt to it. A period of adjustment is required as the brain gets used to this new way of dealing with sound.

I. At first, wear the hearing aids in your home environment.

  • Wear the hearing aids only as long as you are comfortable wearing them.
  • Read something aloud to yourself. Try to listen to soft noises, such as rustling paper, tape water, jingling your keys, etc.
  • Make a brief phone call
  • Have a conversation with a friend or relative in calm, quiet surroundings.
  • Watch a television show or listen to a radio programme in quiet surroundings.

II. Have a conversation in a loud environment. It may take a few days or a few weeks to adjust.

  • Even people with normal hearing do not hear every word.
  • In loud hearing situations, even people without hearing loss need to make an effort in order to hear what they need to hear and ignore the unwanted noise.

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III. Gradually increase the hours of wearing hearing aids over 15-20 days.

IV. Gradually extend the number of persons with whom you speak.

V. Be patient and focused.

How friends and family can help the hearing impaired?

  • Know and talk about his hearing loss.
  • Face the person with hearing loss and maintain eye contact when you talk. Your face and expressions may help you to understand them better.
  • Speak louder, but do not shout. Just talk more clearly and slowly.
  • Turn off the TV or the radio if it is not required.
  • Be aware of noise around you that can make his hearing more difficult, like vacuum cleaner, washing machine or loud music Shorten the distance between you and listener in noisy surroundings.
  • Be patient

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