Does the Phonak Vitro B Titanium go far enough into the canal to prevent the echo sound and hearing my voice?

Sheri Gostomelsky, AuD

Doctor of Audiology

27 September 2017 - 1.62K Views

The answer lies in how deep the device can be built to fit in your ear.  Most of the ear canal has cartilage under the skin, however the last third of the ear canal is bone.  If the device reaches the bony portion of your ear, the echo or occlusion can be eliminated.

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Audiologist in Phoenix

27 September 2017 - 1.62K Views

First off, I applaud your knowledge of the occlusion effect.  The depth of the Virto B Titanium will reduce the occlusion effect compared to a device that does not insert as far, however if you have an extreme adverse reaction to the occlusion effect, you may still perceive difficulty.  A small vent will also help, and will likely exist on the device unless you have poor low frequency  hearing.  On the plus side, if you have poor low frequency hearing, you are less likely to perceive the occlusion effect even without a vent hole.  Separate from the occlusion effect, you may perceive your own voice differently as it will be amplified through the hearing aid speakers.

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Audiologist in London

27 September 2017 - 1.6K Views

The Virto B Titanium has had special blocks to be deeply inserted into the canal (to protect the ear drum during the impression taking process) with a "window" for your hearing-care professional to see how close they are to your eardrum. This allows a deep impression & also due to the block design means the part of the impression usually taken up with a traditional block is utilised. This along with the thinner aid material means a very deep fit is achievable (depending on ear shape & size). So if this is the style of aid you want you would lose very little by trying them. Just be aware success with an aid is a journey not a one off event, so you will need perseverance & possibly adjustments to the sound & shape of the aid.

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Margaret ("Peggy") Tomko

Professional Member

27 September 2017 - 1.62K Views

Unfortunately, the answer to this question is "maybe". This model does have the capacity to go deep enough into an ear canal to prevent or reduce the "occlusion effect". However, whether or not this model can go deep enough into your ear canal depends on the size and shape of your ear canal.

One other thing to note is that some of the echo and hearing your own voice is normal! You hear yourself through your hearing aid, which will sound somewhat like listening to your own voice when you're speaking into a microphone and hearing yourself out of a speaker. There is a delay (only a fraction of a second) between when your voice enters the hearing aid microphones and when the sound exits the hearing aid through the receiver (while you hear your own voice through your head instantly). If you wear the hearing aids consistently (8+ hours per day), that echo sound will seem to go away after several days as your brain readjusts to this new normal.

To determine whether the echo is due to the occlusion effect or the normal sound of a hearing aid, put the hearing aids in your ears without batteries (i.e., so they are off) and see if your own voice still echoes. If it does, it is likely the occlusion effect. If it doesn't, it could be the normal sound of a hearing aid.

Sometimes an audiologist or hearing aid specialist can make modifications or programming adjustments to reduce the occlusion effect and/or echo sensation. I'd definitely recommend visiting your hearing healthcare professional to determine what will be the best solution for you.

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Beltone Hearing  Aid Centers

Professional Member

06 October 2017 - 1.54K Views

Choosing your first hearing aid can be overwhelming, as there are many factors that go into this decision – both for your personal preference and your hearing needs. What makes it more confusing is that many hearing aids look the same on the outside.  Read More..........

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Keith Lam

Inventor, MBA-TM, BSET

02 October 2017 - 1.57K Views

Dear;

It is not easy to assess the situation since there are some missing elements there in your question.  First off, were you fitted with open or close, or power dome?  Secondly, how bad is your low frequency hearing?  The echo effect could be due to the fact that the gains on the hearing aids are too loud, or just because you just hear sounds from your own voice that you did not hear before ( sudden changes in frequency bandwidth + volume).  When fitted correctly, you should not experience echo or hearing your own voice too loud.  Remember that we are born to hear echo from our own voice due to the fact that we have 2 paths of hearing: Bone conduction which is more direct with shorter route, and Air conduction with longer route.  The brains help to suppress the delay (echo).  So if only your voice is echoing then give your brains some time to do the magic.  If everyone sounds echoing then the hearing aids are set too loud ,or the domes need to be changed.

Hope this help.

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Jack Adams

Audiologist

27 September 2017 - 1.6K Views

Your question has been thoroughly addressed by other professionals in this forum however none of them mentioned the Phonak Lyric as an option. Your provider can easily and willingly allow you to try Lyric extended wear devices for a 30 day trial. If the Lyric does not eliminate occlusion and/or the sound of your own voice to your satisfaction then nothing else will. I would suggest you try the Titanium AND the Lyric to see if there is a difference in the negative impacts of occlusion.

 

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Audiologist in Brooklyn

27 September 2017 - 1.62K Views

It absolutely depends on the size of your ear canal and how deep the ear impression is. The deeper the impression, the more likely it is possible to reduce the echo sound also known as the occlusion effect. 

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