Is it even possible to comfortably wear hearing aids while you are also wearing your glasses, despite the fact that the two don’t seem very agreeable? How to wear both is a question that comes up a lot, particularly if you are looking at behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aids. People often question whether they can work together comfortably. Yes is the answer.
Before purchasing hearing aids, there are a few things to consider if you wear glasses. Here’s what you need to know about wearing hearing aids and glasses, together.
There Are a Few Styles of Hearing Aids That Could Work For Your Situation
Even if you don’t wear glasses, there’s a lot to consider when shopping for new hearing aids. Hearing aids come in all sizes, shapes, and styles. You can even get them in stylish colors if you’re into that kind of thing. The point is, the time of wearing hearing aids like your grandpa did is over.
Start your research by really learning about what types of hearing aids are on the market. They divide into three basic categories:
- In-the-canal (ITC) – This style is a lot like the ITE version but it sits deeper into the ear, making them pretty much invisible.
- In-the-ear (ITE) – As the name implies, this style of hearing aid fits directly into the opening of the ear canal and has nothing sitting behind the ear.
- 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 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 versions are pretty much the same setup but without the earmold.
There are good and bad points to each style, but if you wear glasses, ITE and ITC hearing aids will save you from a lot of problems. You can go over the many features of a new hearing aid, but first, you need to choose a style.
Getting to Know The Different Features
When purchasing, it’s the features that should be your number one concern not the shape of the hearing aid. 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 when you are in a noisy place. 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.
- T-coil – This feature permits you to hear better while using 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 on the radio.
- Noise reduction – Filters out background noise by amplifying one channel to augment speech.
Identifying the right features to fit your lifestyle is the aim. Then the style of the hearing aid can be selected.
What if You Want BTE Hearing Aids?
BTE hearing aids can be worn with glasses. If you want them to fit together comfortably you have to wear both of these essential accessories the right way. Here are some tips:
- Before you make an investment look closely at the size of the BTE. There is the standard version, which is a little bit bulky but will still work with glasses. A newer style choice is the mini BTE. Reduced feedback and increased comfort are gained by making the behind the ear part smaller. The only sure way to know which one will be best for you is to try them both.
- Pulling your glasses off in a forward motion, using both hands, is something you should work on until it’s a habit. Removing them like this won’t become a habit right away. When you forget to do this motion you will knock off your hearing aid and that will 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. Check in the mirror after positioning the hearing aid so you will know it looks natural and isn’t hanging off your pinna, which is the outer portion of the ear.
ITE and ITC styles will be the only options for those who can’t use a BTE device with their glasses. For example, if you take off your glasses a lot, BTE devices will be a much greater burden. Children will typically have trouble with this type 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 find out which style fits your lifestyle. Whether or not you can wear both will be evident after you try them.