Is it feasible to comfortably wear hearing aids at the same time as you are wearing your glasses, even though the two don’t seem very compatible? This typical question is especially true if you are thinking about a behind-the-ear (BTE) model. The question is, can I use them both comfortably? The answer is yes.
People who wear glasses need to consider a few factors before investing in hearing aids. Use these suggestions to be sure your hearing aids and glasses work well together.
Choosing The Hearing Aids Which Best Fit Your Needs
There is a lot to think about when you shop for hearing aids, whether you wear glasses or not. Shape, size, and style are all personalizations that are readily available. If you like cool colors, you can get that also. Today’s advanced hearing aids are not like your grandpa’s.
Learning exactly what kind of hearing aids are out there is the way to begin the search. They divide into three basic categories:
- In-the-canal (ITC) – This style is a lot like the ITE model but it sits deeper inside the ear, making them nearly invisible.
- Behind-the-ear (BTE) – This is an older style of hearing aid, but today’s version of this technology is far more advanced. With this model, the main section of the device sits directly behind the ear with clear tubing that connects to an earmold resting in the opening of the ear canal. Open-fit models are basically the same setup but without the earmold.
- In-the-ear (ITE) – As the name implies, this style of hearing aid fits right into the opening of the ear canal with nothing sitting behind the ear.
ITE and ITC versions will allow people with glasses to avoid many drawbacks. The features of your new hearing aid should be considered after deciding on a style.
Getting to Know The Features
When purchasing, it’s the features that should be your primary concern not the shape of the hearing aid. Features are changing all of the time as hearing aid technology improves. Some common ones to watch for include:
- T-coil – This feature allows you to hear better while talking on a land-line phone. T-coil technology is effective if you are listening to people talk through a speaker like at church or on the radio.
- Noise reduction – Filters out background noise by amplifying one channel to augment speech.
- Directional microphone – This helps pinpoint the sound you need to hear while you are in a noisy spot. For instance, if someone is talking to you at a party, you will be able to hear their speech clearly despite the noise around you.
Identifying the best features to fit your lifestyle is the goal. Then, you can decide on the style of hearing aid.
What if You Want BTE Hearing Aids?
Glasses and BTE hearing aids absolutely can be worn together. If you want them to fit together comfortably you need to wear both of these essential accessories the right way. Here are some tips:
- Using both hands, and in a forward motion, practice removing your glasses. It’s going to take some time for this to become a habit. When you forget to do this motion you will knock off your hearing aid and that will help reinforce the practice.
- Get in the habit of putting on your glasses first and then your hearing aids. The placement of your glasses arm is more rigid than your hearing aid so it’s harder to adjust. Look in the mirror after placing the hearing aid so you know it looks discrete and isn’t hanging off your pinna, which is the outer part of the ear.
- Think about the size of the BTE hearing aids before purchasing. Although the standard size will still work with glasses, it’s a little bulky. The other choice is a relatively new style known as mini BTE. Because the behind the ear part is smaller, you get better comfort and less feedback. The only certain way to know which one will be best for you is to try them both.
There are some people that will need to stick to ITE or ITC hearing aids. If you of your glasses frequently, for instance, BTE devices will be a real inconvenience. 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 find out which style fits your lifestyle. Whether or not you can wear both will be evident after you try them out.