Hearing aids and glasses don’t seem to go too well together, but in some cases, both are required. So what can you do to make them work? This common question is particularly true if you are thinking about a behind-the-ear (BTE) model. The question is, can I wear them both comfortably? Yes is the answer.
Before picking out new hearing aids, there are a few things to think about if you wear glasses. Use these suggestions to be sure your hearing aids and glasses work well together.
Choosing The Hearing Aids That Best Serve Your Needs
There are quite a few things, in general, to think about when investing in new hearing aids. You can get hearing aids in many Styles, sizes, and shapes. If you like stylish colors, you can get that also. Modern hearing aids are not the same as the ones that grandpa had.
Begin your research by really understanding what styles of hearing aids are out there. They divide into three basic categories:
- In-the-canal (ITC) – This style is very much like the ITE model but it sits deeper into the ear, making them virtually invisible.
- Behind-the-ear (BTE) – This is an older style of hearing aid, but today’s version of this technology is way more advanced. With this style, the main section of the device mounts right behind the ear with clear tubing that connects to an earmold resting in the opening of the ear canal. Open-fit versions are pretty much the same setup but without the earmold.
- In-the-ear (ITE) – As the name indicates, this format of hearing aid fits directly into the opening of the ear canal with nothing sitting behind the ear.
ITE and ITC models will allow people who wear glasses to avoid many hurdles. You can compare the many features of a new hearing aid, but first, you need to choose a style.
Learning About The Features
Essentially, it’s really the features that should drive your decision as you shop for hearing aids, not the shape. Features are changing all of the time as hearing aid technology evolves. Watch for some of these common ones:
- Directional microphone – This helps pinpoint the sound you need to hear while you are in a noisy place. For example, if someone is talking to you at a party, you will be able to hear their speech clearly in spite of the noise around you.
- Noise reduction – Filters out background noise by amplifying one channel to augment speech.
- T-coil – This feature allows you to hear better while talking on a land-line phone. T-coil technology is effective when you are listening to people talk through a speaker like at a bingo game or at the movies.
Determining the ideal features to suit your lifestyle is the objective. After that picking out the style should be easy.
Can You Even Wear BTE Hearing Aids With Glasses?
BTE hearing aids can be worn with glasses. If you want them to fit together comfortably you need to wear both of these essential accessories the proper way. Here are some tips:
- Pick the correct size BTE before you commit to a purchase. There is the standard version, which can be a little bulky but can still work with glasses. The other option is a relatively new style known as mini BTE. Because the behind the ear part is smaller, you get improved comfort and less feedback. You have to try both styles out to see which one works best.
- Your hearing aid should be put on after you put your glasses on. You can work the placement of your hearing aid around the arm of your glasses which sits a little more rigidly. To be sure that the hearing aid isn’t hanging off your outer ear, after you position it, look in the mirror.
- Pulling your glasses off in a forward motion, using both hands, is something you should work on until it becomes a habit. It will take a little time before you form a habit of removing them this way. Every time you knock off your hearing aids, though, will help to develop the practice.
The only option for those that have a real problem wearing a BTE hearing aid with glasses would be the ITE or ITC devices. BTE devices will be a hassle if, for instance, you take your glasses off a lot. Children will typically have trouble with this kind of hearing aid and also adults with small ears. If you schedule an appointment with a hearing aid professional you can get a free trial period to see which style is best for you. Trying the different styles is the only way you will know for sure which style works best for you.