What are BTE hearing aids?

Behind the ear (BTE) hearing aids have a speaker that is located in the case behind the ear – hence the name – and the sound travels into a plastic tube that transmits sound into the ear canal.

BTE hearing aids are often considered to be the most comfortable as they minimise any ‘blocked’ sensation, with their small sound  transmitters being the only element resting in the ear. Our advancements in technology mean that even glasses wearers enjoy a
comfortable fit.

What are invisible hearing aids?

Invisible in the canal (IIC) hearing aids are our smallest hearing aids and are the most discreet type of aid available.

IIC hearing aids are available in two versions. Some are an instant fit, with a soft silicone sleeve which sits comfortably in the canal. Others are custom-made specifically for your ear canal and are available in a dark colour to ensure they are discreet when worn.

As with all custom fit hearing aids, they are made to fit the wearer exactly. With first use, there can be a feeling of ears feeling slightly ‘blocked’. Over time, this awareness of the aid will subside as the wearer gets used to their hearing aids. Because they fit completely in the canal, IICs are considered to be very comfortable.

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Which is better?

There is no easy answer to this question, unfortunately. Everyone is different and so too is the fitting style of hearing aids for each person. Both BTE and IIC remain very popular options with our current customers.

It’s important to note that, depending on your individual style and level of hearing assistance required from your aid, the type/shape of the aid needed may vary.

Having a hearing aid that suits your needs and fits comfortably in the ear is the most important part of a healthy relationship with you and your hearing aid. There should be no compromise between comfort and sound quality.

Whatever style you choose, a good fit/seal in the ear is essential because it allows sound to be channelled into the ear without letting any amplified sound leak out which leads to feedback (whistling).

What’s the difference between the two?

Externally, the styling. Internally, the technology can be the same, or it can be quite varied; that depends on your personal preference and your budget.

Most of our hearing aid ranges are available in a variety of fitting styles. Remember, you pay for the technology contained within the hearing aid and the style of its fitting, rather than the severity of your hearing loss.

The fitting styles may be different and one style may be more comfortable for you, but it’s important to note that the styles are no indicator of the technological effectiveness of your hearing aid. 

Find out more about our range of digital hearing aids at our dedicated resource page.