Hearing aids and glasses most likely seem like oil and water, but is there a way to get these two very necessary accessories to work together? This typical question is specifically true if you are thinking about a behind-the-ear (BTE) model. The question is, can I use them both comfortably? The answer is yes.
If you wear glasses, there are certain things to consider when investing in hearing aids. Here’s what you need to know regarding wearing hearing aids and glasses, together.
There Are a Few Types of Hearing Aids That May Work For Your Needs
Whether you wear glasses or not, there are a lot of considerations when investing in new hearing aids. You can get hearing aids in many styles, shapes, and sizes. They even offer them in stylish colors if you like that type of thing. Modern hearing aids are not like the ones that grandpa had.
Start the process by really learning about what types of hearing aids are out there. They divide into three basic categories:
- Behind-the-ear (BTE) – This is an older style of hearing aid, but today’s version of this technology is far more advanced. With this model, the main section of the device mounts right behind the ear with clear tubing that connects to an earmold resting in the opening of the ear canal. Open-fit versions are pretty much the same setup except without the earmold.
- In-the-ear (ITE) – As the name implies, this style of hearing aid fits directly into the opening of the ear canal and has nothing mounted behind the ear.
- In-the-canal (ITC) – This style is a lot like the ITE model but it sits deeper into the ear, making them nearly invisible.
If you wear glasses, you can steer clear of a lot of problems with ITE and ITC versions. The features of your new hearing aid should be considered after choosing a style.
Learning About The Different Features
It’s really the features not the shape of the hearing aid that should be your primary concern when researching. Hearing aid technology is evolving all the time, so features change. Some common ones to look for include:
- Noise reduction – Filters out background noise by amplifying one channel to augment speech.
- Directional microphone – This will help pinpoint the sound you need to hear when you are in a noisy place. For example, if someone is talking to you at a restaurant, you will be able to hear their words clearly in spite of the noise around you.
- T-coil – This function allows you to hear better while using a land-line phone. T-coil technology is useful if you are listening to people talk through a speaker like at a bingo game or on the radio.
Determining the right features to suit your lifestyle is the goal. Then the style of the hearing aid can be decided on.
Can You Even Wear BTE Hearing Aids With Glasses?
BTE hearing aids can be worn with glasses. The secret is to wear both of these important accessories in the correct way, so they are comfortable. Here are some tips:
- Your hearing aid should be put on after you put on your glasses. The position of your glasses arm is more fixed than your hearing aid so it’s harder to adjust. To be sure that the hearing aid isn’t hanging from your outer ear, after you position it, look in the mirror.
- With both hands, and in a forward motion, practice removing your glasses. Removing them like this won’t become a habit immediately. If you forget to do this motion you will knock off your hearing aid and that will help reinforce the practice.
- Select the appropriate size BTE before you make a purchase. There is the traditional version, which can be a little bit bulky but can still work with glasses. A newer style choice is the mini BTE. Decreased feedback and enhanced comfort are gained by making the behind the ear portion smaller. You have to try both styles out to determine which one works best.
ITE and ITC styles are the only choices for those people who can’t use a BTE device with their glasses. If you of your glasses a lot, for instance, a BTE device will be a real inconvenience. Children will commonly have trouble with this kind of hearing aid and also adults with small ears. Most quality hearing aid sellers will give a trial period, so schedule an appointment to find out what device is the right one for you. Whether or not you can wear both will be evident after you try them.