Is it even possible to comfortably wear hearing aids while you are also wearing your glasses, even though the two don’t seem very agreeable? This typical 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.
People who wear glasses should think about a few factors before investing in new hearing aids. Use these tips to make sure your hearing aids and glasses work well together.
There Are a Few Types of Hearing Aids That Could Work For Your Situation
Whether you wear glasses or not, there’s a lot to consider when investing in new hearing aids. You can get hearing aids in many shapes, styles, and sizes. You can even get a fancy color if you like. Modern high tech hearing aids are not the same as the ones that grandpa wore.
Understanding exactly what type of hearing aids are available is the way to begin the process. 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 nearly invisible.
- 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 directly behind the ear with clear tubing that connects to an earmold sitting in the opening of the ear canal. Open-fit models are basically the same setup except without the earmold.
- In-the-ear (ITE) – As the name implies, this format of hearing aid fits directly into the opening of the ear canal with nothing sitting behind the ear.
There are advantages and drawbacks to each style, but if you wear glasses, ITE and ITC hearing aids will save you from a lot of issues. The features of your new hearing aid should be reviewed after deciding on a style.
Learning About The Different Features
When purchasing, it’s the features that should be your number one concern not the shape of the hearing aid. Hearing aid technology is evolving all the time, so features constantly change. Watch for some of these common ones:
- Noise reduction – Filters out background noise by amplifying one channel to augment speech.
- T-coil – This function allows you to hear better while using a land-line phone. T-coil technology is effective if you are listening to people talk through a speaker like at a bingo game or at the movies.
- Directional microphone – This will help pinpoint the sound you need to hear while you are in a noisy location. For example, if someone is talking to you at a restaurant, you will be able to hear their words easily in spite of the noise around you.
Your goal is to determine the right set of features and functions to fit your lifestyle. After that picking out the style should be easy.
Wearing BTE Hearing Aids With Glasses
BTE hearing aids can be worn with glasses. If you want them to fit together comfortably you have to wear both of these important accessories the proper way. Here are some tips:
- Practice removing your glasses by pulling them forward with both hands instead of up with one. It’s going to take time to make this movement a habit. Each time you knock off your hearing aids, though, will help to reinforce the practice.
- First put your glasses on, then your hearing aid. Placement of the hearing aid unit is a little more flexible so you can maneuver it around the arm of the glasses to make it comfortable. After placing the hearing aid, look in the mirror to be sure it’s not hanging from your outer ear.
- Before you make a purchase look closely at the size of the BTE. While the standard size will still work with glasses, it’s a little bulky. The other option is a relatively new style called mini BTE. The part that fits behind the ear is much smaller for enhanced comfort and to reduce the feedback that you sometimes get with the BTE devices. The only certain way to know which one will work best for you is to try them both.
There will be some people who will have to stick to ITE or ITC hearing aids. BTE devices will be a big problem if, for example, you take your glasses off a lot. Children will usually have problems with this type of hearing aid and also adults with small ears. Most quality hearing aid retailers will give a trial period, so schedule an appointment to see what device is best for you. Use this time to determine if you can wear both or not.