Emily Martinson, AuD, PhD
Patients of all ages often ask me which type of hearing aid is best for them. There are a number of factors that determine which hearing aid is best, including hearing loss, ear shape, and lifestyle. For many patients, invisibility is the most important factor. When most of us think of hearing aids, we picture the big chunky behind-the-ear style that our grandparents wore. In reality, hearing aids keep getting smaller and smaller as technology improves.
Think about computers in the 1950s- they took up a whole room! The smartphone that you carry in your pocket (and periodically drop in the toilet) has more computing power than those old-fashioned computers ever had. The same is true for hearing aids. Modern hearing aids, such as the NuEar Miniscopic, Starkey SoundLens, and Phonak Lyric, are completely invisible to others, but have more power than chunky behind-the-ear models from the 1990s.
Invisibility is important for a number of reasons. Many patients like the idea of having hearing aids that are discreet. Maybe they have not told their friends that they wear hearing aids, maybe they work in a field where appearances are important, or maybe they just like the idea that no one can see them. Whatever the reason, there is an invisible or almost invisible option for almost everyone.
Check with your hearing care provider for more information.