Hearing Aids


In recent decades, hearing aid research and innovation has skyrocketed. Hearing aids of today are power-packed with incredible features and technological advances – all in smaller and more discreet packages than ever before. When exploring hearing aids, the internet holds a vast amount of information. This amount of information can easily become overwhelming when researching hearing aids on your own. That is why we have created this guide to help you gain a better understanding of hearing aids and their features.

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Hearing Aid Styles

Hearing aid manufacturers are rather consistent across the board in how they name “styles” of hearing aids. These styles refer to how the hearing aid fits into or onto your ear. To make life easier, manufacturers use three or four-letter acronyms to describe device styles.


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Invisible-In-Canal (IIC) Styles – IIC hearing aids are the most discreet option on the market. These hearing aids fit further within your ear canal, causing them to be completely or almost completely invisible.

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Completely-In-Canal (CIC) Styles – Like IIC styles, CIC hearing aids are custom molded to fit the wearer’s ear canal. These hearing aids also fit within the ear canal and are very discreet, however, a small lever used to remove the hearing aid is visible.

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In-The-Canal (ITC) and In-The-Ear (ITE) Styles – ITC and ITE hearing aids are very similar to each other. Unlike CIC and IIC styles, these hearing aids fit in the outer ear, rather within the ear canal. In-The-Ear (ITE) styles tend to take up more room in the outer ear and are therefore more visible.

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Receiver-In-Canal (RIC) and Receiver-In-The-Ear (RITE) Styles – RIC and RITE style hearing aids are very similar to each other. With RITE and RIC hearing aids, the technology of the aids is housed in a casing that sits behind the outer ear. A thin and very discreet metal wire connects this technology to a custom ear bud that sits in your ear canal. These are also some of the most inconspicuous hearing aids.

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Behind-The-Ear (BTE) Styles – BTE hearing aids are very similar to RIC and RITE hearing aids. The key difference here is that BTE aids employ a plastic tubing rather than a thin metal wire to connect the outer casing to the ear bud in the ear canal. Because of this, BTE styles tend to be more conspicuous.

Hearing Aid Features

Hearing aids of today are extremely capable. Along with choosing a hearing aid style, it is also important to explore the features that most excite you and best fit with your lifestyle and hearing profile. Here are some common features:



  • Improved Speech Intelligibility

    This one is imperative. Almost every hearing aid manufacturer has their own type of patented technology to achieve the goal of making listening to and participating in conversations easier and more enjoyable. Modern hearing aids no longer simply amplify all the sounds around you. They are all capable of identifying the difference between speech sounds and background noise and adjust accordingly.

  • BlueTooth Capability

    BlueTooth capability is a reality for many of today’s hearing aids. This connectivity is important for those who spend a lot of time on the phone or who enjoy streaming music or movies through their hearing aids.

  • Smartphone Connectivity

    Similar to BlueTooth capability, some hearing aids are actually able to connect directly to your iPhone or Android and stream directly – without the need to connect to BlueTooth. These hearing aids are also typically partnered with intuitive apps that allow users to adjust their hearing aids straight from their smartphones.

  • Rechargeable or Traditional Batteries

    Some hearing aids are powered by traditional disposable batteries while others are rechargeable. This is an important consideration when choosing hearing aids. Rechargeable hearing aids are a great option for those who do not want to purchase and replace batteries often, or who are environmentally conscious. Traditional batteries may be a better choice for those who do not want to or do not have the time to charge their hearing aids.

Rechargeable or Traditional Batteries

Some hearing aids are powered by traditional disposable batteries while others are rechargeable. This is an important consideration when choosing hearing aids. Rechargeable hearing aids are a great option for those who do not want to purchase and replace batteries often, or who are environmentally conscious. Traditional batteries may be a better choice for those who do not want to or do not have the time to charge their hearing aids.

Let Carolina Speech and Hearing Help

These are just four of the hundreds of hearing aid features currently available on the market. Let us work with you to help you choose the hearing aid style and features that work best with your hearing profile, lifestyle, and budget.

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