Many of the excellent hearing aids come in a variety of styles including BTE (behind the ear), ITE (in the ear), ITC (in the canal), MC (mini canal), and CIC (completely in the canal). Some manufacturers, though, make special models that are specifically designed with the usual user of BTE hearing aids in mind.
Oticon, for instance, makes the Sumo DM with plenty of power to amplify sound for those with greater hearing loss. With the increased ability to amplify comes the possibility of voices that don’t sound weak or distorted. Its design also conserves battery life, and even when the batteries do start to run down, the Sumo DM’s performance doesn’t suffer. This is a good practical choice for the BTE hearing aid wearer with significant hearing loss.
For a high-tech solution, try the Widex Senso BTE hearing aids. These have all the fancy features. They are fully digital. They process sound at an extremely fast rate, which is not true for all digital models. They process it in three bands. They analyze the signal, regulate it within each frequency, process the signal and send it through to the speakers.
These BTE hearing aids separate speech from noise and put the emphasis on the speech sounds. Also, they have a great system for eliminating recruitment. This is a phenomenon in people with hearing loss where at first they can’t hear you at all, and then you speak just a little louder and suddenly they feel as if you’re shouting at them.
These BTE hearing aids are also programmed to deal with feedback. They come with directional microphones on each hearing aid. They reduce the noises that are more constant in your environment, like the hum of a refrigerator. And, these BTE hearing aids are also available in special models that have more power for the people with more profound hearing loss.
One type of BTE hearing aid that is made by several manufacturers is the open ear BTE aid. These are very lightweight and comfortable. The ear mold often comes in designer colors. The aids are equipped with extremely thin tubing for their ear hooks. The actual aid compartment itself that sits behind the ear may be so small and light that it’s barely noticeable. For example, the Siemens Prisma BTE hearing aids weigh only two grams, but still have two microphones and a couple of memories that you can switch by pushing a button. The Starkey Aries BTE hearing aids are also extremely small.
The open ear hearing aids have the added bonus of not blocking your ears. Many people are very uncomfortable having their ears shut off the way they are with most hearing aids. With the open ear hearing aid the ear has room to breathe, so to speak. Many also come with nanocoating. This is a covering substance that repels foreign matter such as sweat, dirt, and water.
Each kind of hearing aid is advantageous for someone. If you decide that BTE hearing aids are your best decision, explore the options carefully. There are many choices available within that category.