Hearing aids and glasses don’t appear to go very well with one another, but in some cases both are necessary. So what can you do to make them get along? If you are thinking about a behind-the-ear (BTE) device, this common question is even more pertinent. Is it even possible to wear them both and still be comfortable? Yes is the answer.
People who wear glasses need to consider a few things before investing in hearing aids. Use these tips to be sure your hearing aids and glasses work well together.
What Style of Hearing Aids Are Best for You?
There is a lot to consider when you’re shopping for hearing aids, even when you don’t happen to wear glasses. Size, shape, and style are all personalizations that are available. If you like cool colors, you can get that also. Modern hearing aids are not like the ones that grandpa wore.
The first thing to do is to find out what kinds of hearing aids are available. They break down into three basic categories:
- Behind-the-ear (BTE) – This is an older style of hearing aid, but today’s version of this technology is much more advanced. With this style, the main section of the device sits right behind the ear with clear tubing that connects to an earmold sitting in the opening of the ear canal. Open-fit versions are basically the same setup except without the earmold.
- In-the-canal (ITC) – This style is very much like the ITE model but it sits deeper inside the ear, making them pretty much invisible.
- In-the-ear (ITE) – As the name implies, this format of hearing aid fits directly into the opening of the ear canal and has nothing mounted behind the ear.
ITE and ITC versions will allow people with glasses to avoid many pitfalls. The features of your new hearing aid should be considered after deciding on a style.
Learning About The Features
When buying, it’s the features that should be your primary concern not the shape of the hearing aid. Evolving hearing aid technology is causing features to change all of the time. Watch for some of these common ones:
- T-coil – This function allows you to hear better while talking on a land-line phone. T-coil technology is useful when you are listening to people talk through a speaker like at a bingo game or on the radio.
- Directional microphone – This will help pinpoint the sound you need to hear when you are in a noisy location. For instance, if someone is talking to you at a restaurant, you can hear their speech easily despite the noise around you.
- Noise reduction – Filters out background noise by amplifying one channel to enhance speech.
Determining the right features to suit your lifestyle is the aim. Then, you can decide on the style of hearing aid.
Wearing BTE Hearing Aids With Glasses
BTE hearing aids can be worn with glasses. The trick is to wear both of these essential accessories in the correct way, so they are comfortable. Here are some tips:
- Before you make an investment look carefully at the size of the BTE. Despite the fact that it’s a little bulky, the traditional version will still work with glasses. A newer style choice is the mini BTE. Because the behind the ear portion is smaller, you get improved comfort and a reduced amount of feedback. You have to try out both styles to determine which one works best.
- Your hearing aid should be put in only after you put your glasses on. Positioning of the hearing aid unit is a little bit more flexible so you can maneuver it around the arm of the glasses to make it comfortable. Look in a mirror after placing the hearing aid so you will know it looks discrete and isn’t hanging off your pinna, which is the outer part of the ear.
- With both hands, and in a forward motion, practice removing your glasses. It will take some time for this to become a habit. If you forget to use this motion you will knock off your hearing aid and that will reinforce the practice.
There will be some people who will need to stay with ITE or ITC models. BTE devices will be a hassle if, for instance, you take your glasses off a lot. This combination will also be a hassle for people with small ears and for children. If you schedule an appointment with a hearing aid professional you can get a free trial period to see which style fits your lifestyle. Trying the different styles is the only way you will know for sure which style works best for your needs.