In spite of economic issues, the invisible hearing aids is getting people motivated to finally address and seek treatment for their hearing loss. In good economic times, seeking hearing help has not been on the top of anyone’s priority purchase list. No one wants to wear hearing aids. Certainly not the one’s that are obvious to the world!
As an industry, we spend much time educating the public on the importance of protecting one’s hearing and the importance of seeking treatment sooner than later. The 100% Invisible Hearing Aid has changed all that.
Are you a candidate? It’s important to seek the advice from a reputable Hearing Healthcare Professional who’s focus is on four important criteria: Evaluating and Understanding your Hearing Loss, Medical History, Ear Anatomy and Lifestyle. If you are a first time wearer, ask family and friends about their experience with their Hearing Professional. Hearing Loss is very private and personal and you should be comfortable with the professional you choose.
Price shopping is just that! Professional shopping is something different! Hearing aids are just one factor in your treatment for your specific hearing loss. A knowledgeable professional will provide you with a realistic recommendation based on the four criteria above. There are a number of 100% Invisible Hearing Aids on the market today and more to come with each and every month. Which one is right for you? Here is a brief description of the different kinds of 100% Invisible Hearing Aids on the market today.
There Are 3 Categories Of Invisible Hearing Aids
- Surgically Implanted by ENT Physicians
- Non-Surgical Medical Placement by Hearing Healthcare Professionals
- Traditionally Inserted and Removed by Wearer and fit and sized by Hearing Healthcare Professionals (Both Custom and One-Size Fits All)
The Invisible Hearing Aids
All invisible hearing aids are designed to use the ear’s natural ability to pick up sound and their close proximity to the ear drum can provide a more natural sound quality. The surgical implant uses the natural ear as well and converts sound with the sophistication of a uniqe processing system which created vibration and delivers electrical impulses to the cochlear without a microphone or speaker.
Like all hearing aids, no one is best for everyone. Even when all the criteria is met for candidacy of any Invisible Hearing Aids, there is no guaranty for result, satisfaction, and or acceptance.
I’ve discussed experience and satisfaction/dissatisfaction with many, many, patients and professionals over the past year and a half on each type of device. Beginning with the Esteem, the surgically implanted device has no microphone or speaker, and batteries need changing every few years with another surgical application. The result seems to be very favorable.
Though many wish they opted for a non-surgical solution. Having been through the surgical procedure once for implantation, dreaded the though of additional surgical procedures for battery change. It is very expensive and not covered by insurance as it is elective surgery.
It appears to be a specialized procedure and discussion with the top Otolaryngologist in the country chose to not perform the procedure due to the success rate for treatment with today’s advancements in hearing aid technologies. Some feared the risk of failure may be too high a risk to take.
The Lyric and Wow Invisible Hearing Aids are a popular choice. The claim of 24/7 wear and up to 4 months for a battery change was enough to get younger, first-time wearers to finally seek treatment. Patient claims of hearing better far outweighed the lesser claims. With only two sizes, small and large, fit and discomfort issues seem to be common.
Many indicated that irritation in one or two ears as a result of finding the correct size, was so intense that waiting up to 4 months for the inflammation and in many cases infection with antibiotics, to subside, before trying again. About half stated that the batteries did not last for 4 or even 3 months and in many cases the batteries failed in a very short period of time. Changing batteries requires a trip to the Hearing Professional’s Office.
The general consensus was that, though it seemed like a good idea at the time, having control of taking it out and changing the battery whenever necessary was well worth the effort to hear better. One individual was upset to have to take time off from work for a battery change!
As a result of the unique purchasing program of the Lyric, I’ve seen many patients opt out of the next year renewal and seek SoundLens, a traditional type, but 100% Invisible alternative solution. SoundLens by Starkey Laboratories has been the choice of dissatisfied or unsuccessful Lyric wearers. Patients love to be able to remove from their ears whenever they feel like it, can change a battery any time necessary and anywhere without an appointment or inconvenience.
Being custom fit and removable, patients find SoundLens comfortable to wear love to be able to give their “ears a rest.” The SoundLens is a State-of-the-Art, Premier Level Programmable Hearing Device with 16 Channels and Bands, is Multi-Memory and features the most advanced Noise Management System in the industry.
Most patient satisfaction resulted from Lyric wearers. Satisfaction/dissatisfaction for wearers of traditional hearing aids was improved as a result of being invisible. Caution here is that ear anatomy is key to a great fit. Starkey reports about 70+% of hearing aid wearers can be fit and will enjoy success with this product.
As for the one-size-fits-all Traditional type Invisible Hearing Aids, AMP, also by Starkey Laboratories is fast becoming the product of choice. Though simple compared to the advanced technology of today’s programmable digital hearing aids, it’s sophistication comes from the fact that it is a Digital device, compared to the Analog sound of Lyric, and has broad range ability to emphasize high and low frequency need – and is programmed wirelessly with an iPad. At a fraction of the costs of other Invisible solutions, AMP’s popularity is growing week after week and first time wearers are happy to have an affordable solution to addressing mild-moderate hearing loss.
Like all other devices, no one device is for everyone. Again, Ear Anatomy is critical to insure a proper fit. Though deep in the canal, in a small number of cases, the device will not stay put. This can occur with all other canal hearing aids for some with jaw movement that can force the hearing aid to slide out. There is no solution for this with the AMP. When this occurs in a custom hearing aid, there are numerous ways to remake and solve this problem.
My years experience fitting and counseling thousands of patients with all kinds of hearing losses, hearing aids, sizes shapes, etc., most will agree that hearing better is most likely more important than how hearing aids look. Some of the same individuals and most of my younger patients agree that it’s really nice to have an invisible solution.
Preferred Hearing Care is a leader in Invisible Hearing Aids solutions. To see if you are a candidate for an invisible solution, contact us at 866-330-HEAR(4327). Preferred Hearing Care is a full service Hearing Healthcare Practice. Featuring hearing aid solutions for all which includes invisible hearing aids.