When your audiologist has recommended a hearing aid to you, you will understandably want to know about the different types of hearing aids that are available. While they can all be recommended to help improve your hearing, you might prefer to choose one type over another. In this article, we are going to look at behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aids.
What are BTE hearing aids?
BTE hearing aids come in a variety of sizes, and as the name suggests, are designed to fit behind the ears. The design includes a case that sits behind the ear and this contains the microphone and receiver that detects and processes sounds. These sounds are then sent through the small plastic tube that sits above the ear and into the ear mold that transmits the sound into the ear.
BTE hearing aids are very popular and because of the size, there is the scope for a range of technological features that can assist the user. So, is this the right type of hearing aid for you?
Let’s take a look at the pros and cons.
Comfort: BTE hearing aids don’t come into contact with the ear canal, and this is a big advantage for those people who find in-the-canal (ITC) hearing aids uncomfortable.
Easy to maintain: Your audiologist will advise you on the maintenance needed for your hearing aid, but some are easier to maintain than others. If you want something that is easy to look after, you might decide on a BTE hearing aid as these require less maintenance than others.
Ease of use: BTE hearing aids can be controlled in two ways, either through the buttons on the device casing or through an external controller, such as an app on an enabled smartphone. This flexibility is why these hearing aids are a popular choice.
Excellent battery life: BTE hearing aids generally have better battery life than other types of hearing aid and this is because the casing can hold the larger size 3 batteries.
Minimal feedback: Feedback can be a problem on some hearing aids, but because the internal components are distanced from each other, there is less feedback on BTE hearing aids.
Less discreet: If you’re looking for a hearing aid that is barely visible or invisible, then the BTE hearing aid might not be right for you. This isn’t to say visibility needs to be a problem. BTE hearing aids are a lot smaller than they used to be, but as they sit behind the ear, they can still be noticeable.
Wind noise: Compared to other types of hearing aid, BTE models are more likely to have issues with wind noise. If you’re regularly working outdoors in open spaces, you might decide on a different type of hearing aid.
Is a BTE hearing aid right for you?
BTE hearing aids are a popular choice and for many, there are advantages over the other types of hearing aid available. To find out more, book an appointment with your audiologist, and discuss the type of hearing aid that is right for your personal preferences.