Hearing Aid Comparison: Models and Styles

hearing aid comparison over blue background with dollar signs

Hearing aid comparison is the first step to finding the best hearing aid for you. There are many styles and models to choose from. Do you go with an invisible hearing aid that offers sound quality and discretion? Or do you choose a more powerful and expensive model made for an active lifestyle? Let’s take a closer look at your options so you can find the hearing aid that’s right for you.

Models

Hearing aid models are typically sorted into three different categories: basic, mid-range, and premium. Most offer digital sound processing, feedback cancellation, and multiple hearing programs, but only premium models automatically adjust to different hearing environments. Here’s a chart that shows what the different models offer.

infographic hearing aid comparison

Styles

Hearing aids come in a variety of styles:

  • Invisible-in-the-canal (IIC)
  • Completely-in-canal (CIC)
  • In-the-canal (ITC)
  • In-the-ear (ITE)
  • Receiver-in-canal or receiver-in-the-ear (RIC/RITE)
  • Behind-the-ear (BTE)

Each style offers different features. For example, in-canal options are good for those with mild hearing loss because they are smaller and therefore less powerful than other styles. Larger styles like RIC/RITE and BTE may be less discreet, but they’re easier to handle if you have trouble with dexterity.

Invisible hearing aids

In-canal hearing aids are a great option if you have mild hearing loss or would like your hearing aid to be more discreet. Here are some pros and cons to invisible hearing aids.

Pros:

  • Closer to eardrum
  • Require less power
  • Visually discreet
  • Natural sound quality

Cons:

  • Not recommended for those with moderate to severe hearing loss
  • Short battery life
  • Designed for those with wider ear canals

To help you decide which hearing aid model and style is right for you, talk to your ear, nose, and throat doctor, audiologist, or hearing specialist.

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