Are there any truly invisible hearing aids?

Audiologist in Oak Brook

22 September 2018 - 514 Views

Truly invisible hearing aids are fit deeply into the ear canal.  Phonak makes the Lyric and it is semipermanently fit into the ear canal by an audiologist.  It is not a custom fit, but there are many sizes.  Starkey and Phonak can make a custom IIC (Invisible In the Canal) hearing aid after an audiologist makes a very deep mold of the ear canal.

I’d like to note that there are some restrictions and medical contraindications that restrict some patients from these types of hearing aids.  First, the degree of hearing loss. Some people have normal low frequency hearing, which can cause their voice to sound boomy and unnatural while wearing this style of hearing aid. Also, a great deal of hearing loss can reduce a person’s chances of hearing optimally with very small IIC hearing aids.  Second, the size of the ear canal can sometimes restrict the ability to fit the device deep enough into the canal for it to not be seen from any angle.  Third, if the patient has a high incidence to outer ear infections and/or draining ears, he/she would be discouraged from pursuing this style of hearing aid.

I highly recommend you make an appointment with an audiologist in your area to find out what style of hearing aid would be best for you and your lifestyle.

I hope you find this information helpful.

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Audiologist in Prairie Village

21 September 2018 - 579 Views

Lyric hearing aids are truly the most invisible hearing aids however they have a limited candidacy and functionality depending upon the user's hearing loss and needs.  I would recommend finding an audiologist who works with Lyric in your community to consult about candidacy and fully understand all your options.  It may also be helpful to explore the underlying reasons for having a hearing aid "invisible".  Some completely in the canal devices or deep fitting IIC devices are also quite invisible but it may depend upon the ear canal size and shape as to how deep they can be fit to not be seen.  It may depend upon several variables including the manufacturer and available options. 
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Angela Lederman, MS

Audiologist

08 October 2018 - 474 Views

Truly 'invisible' hearing aids fit deeply into the ear canal.  Phonak makes a product called Lyric, which is an extended wear device and placed into the ear canal by an audiologist.  Several manufacturers also make IIC (invisible-in-the-ear) devices that may be barely visible.  The visibility of most hearing devices is ultimately determined by the size and shape of the ear canal.  If cosmetics are the most important factor when selecting a hearing instrument, this should be an honest discussion between you and your audiologist.

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Jessica Strzepek, AuD

Hearing Healthcare Provider

24 September 2018 - 499 Views

There are many options and styles when considering hearing devices, most of which are barely visible on or in the ear. Lyric, however, is a "truly invisible" hearing device made by the manufacturer Phonak. It's a 24/7 device that is placed deep in the ear canal by an audiologist and is worn for several weeks at a time. Although this device is not made custom, it comes in many sizes. Your audiologist will size and fit you as appropriate. There are some contraindications to using Lyric, such as radiation therapy to the head or neck and/or middle ear pathologies.  If Lyric is not appropriate for you or your hearing loss, there are several different IIC devices to choose from. IICs or "invisible-in-the-canal" hearing devices fit snug in the ear canal. These devices are made custom and are removed from the ear every night. The best way to find out what works for you and fits your needs is to make an appointment with your audiologist. He or she will let you know what you are a candidate for and help you on your journey to better hearing. Best of luck! 

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Sheri Gostomelsky, AuD

Doctor of Audiology

22 September 2018 - 512 Views

To answer your question, here's a short blog that I published in August. 

http://www.chicagonow.com/say-what/2018/08/invisible-hearing-aids/

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Chris Wahl, AuD

Audiologist

21 September 2018 - 525 Views

That’s a good question. There are a number of invisible in the canal hearing aids (IIC) available. These include disposable devices such as Phonak Lyric or reusable devices such as Starkey Soundlens. 
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Chris Harmon

Professional Member

21 September 2018 - 557 Views

The Lyric by Phonak is definitely the most hidden.  It always seemed to me that about 30% of the people that tried them continued using them because they felt occluded.  Of course there were adjustments to alter that. Over the years, different versions have been released and they are much more wearable.  Some of the deep IIC models are pretty hidden too but might be visible due to the removal line.  I counsel my clients that are truly worried about their hearing aids being visible that in most cases, a hearing loss is more visible than hearing aids.
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