Style Spotlight: In-The-Ear Hearing Aids

In-the-ear (ITE) hearing aids are designed to fit in the outer ear and are very easy to handle.

In-the-ear (ITE) hearing aids might be just a little bigger than other available custom styles, but this simply proves the old adage that sometimes, bigger can be better.

Designed to be worn in the outer ear, ITE hearing aids are composed of a single plastic shell case that contains all the aid’s parts. The user doesn’t wear anything behind the ear with this style: the user simply inserts the hearing aid into the ear just outside the ear canal, where it fills the visible part of the ear known as the auricle. To ensure a perfect fit, ITE aids are typically custom made based on an impression of the wearer’s ear and ear canal. This high degree of customization means that ITE aids are usually very comfortable to wear.

“Fills the visible part of the ear?” Does that mean that everyone can easily see my hearing aid?

There is no need to worry. While ITE hearing aids have been around since the 1970s, the manufacturers have updated the size and appearance since then! Today’s ITE hearing aids are neat little packages, which fit tidily and discreetly into the ear and are specially designed to match skin tone. Moreover, the fact that they are a little bit bigger in size means that they are able to offer some distinct advantages. It is easier to handle and easier to insert than smaller aids. This is an important factor if the wearer has difficulty with manual dexterity or struggles with their vision. In addition, the larger size of an ITE aid means that it can contain more manual controls, such as a program control or volume button, as well as a more powerful speaker and a larger, longer-lasting battery.