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Woman with Hearing Aid

Hearing Aids

At Dallas ENT Group, we understand that hearing aids are essential for improving the quality of life for those with hearing loss. Our audiologist provides personalized care to help you find the perfect hearing aid tailored to your unique needs. Whether you're experiencing mild or severe hearing loss, we offer a variety of hearing aids to suit different lifestyles and preferences. 

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What is a hearing aid?

A hearing aid is a digital device designed to amplify sound and help individuals with hearing loss. It sits in or behind the ear and aids in transmitting sound to the hearing organ.

How does it work?

Hearing aids consist of microphones, a speaker, a battery, and a microchip. Sound enters through microphones, is processed by the microchip (customized to an individual’s hearing loss), and is sent through the speaker into the ear.  The microchip can be adjusted by an audiologist to improve speech clarity and reduce background noise based on the user's specific hearing needs.

Will hearing aids make my hearing loss go away?

Hearing aids will help a person hear better, but they cannot cure or reverse hearing loss. They are designed to improve hearing by amplifying sound, but they do not heal the ear where the hearing loss has occurred. If our audiologist recommends hearing aids, it means your hearing loss cannot be treated through medical or surgical means and can only be managed with amplification.

Will hearing aids stop my hearing from getting worse?

Hearing aids do not prevent the progression of hearing loss. Your hearing can continue to decline due to aging (presbycusis), noise exposure, ototoxic medication use, and other factors. Hearing aids can, however, help you hear better when wearing the devices, even as your hearing gets worse.

Hearing Aids and Cognition

​Although hearing aids cannot stop hearing loss, they can help preserve the brain's ability to process sounds. Hearing involves both the ears and the brain; without regular auditory stimulation, the brain's ability to interpret sounds can decline. Early use of hearing aids is important to maintain this auditory processing ability.

 

Research shows that the longer our brains are deprived of sound, the harder it is for the brain to make sense of it, with or without hearing aids. By treating hearing loss early, we can slow the decline in sound processing by ensuring consistent auditory stimulation.

 

General cognition, on top of sound processing, can also decline from prolonged untreated hearing loss. The link between hearing loss and cognitive decline is arguably due to:

  • Social Isolation - retreating from social situations due to the inability to hear.

  • Cognitive Load - the brain uses more resources to compensate for the hearing deficit.

  • Neurodegenerative Process - nerve cells in the brain slowly deteriorate, affecting memory and thinking.

 

Even without a consensus on the cause of the link between cognition and hearing loss, research has shown that using hearing aids to treat hearing loss early also reduces the effects of cognitive decline

Do I have to wear them every day?

Yes, for the best results, it is important to wear your hearing aids daily. Consistent use helps provide the necessary auditory stimulation to your brain. Your audiologist will guide you on any specific situations where you might need to remove your hearing aids.

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Types of Hearing Aids

Hearing aids come in various styles, including behind-the-ear (BTE), in-the-ear (ITE), in-the-canal (ITC), and completely-in-the-canal (CIC) models. The best style for you will be determined by your audiologist, based on your specific hearing loss and lifestyle needs.

Here are different styles of hearing aids that may be recommended by our audiologist:

Receiver-in-the-Canal (RIC)

A Receiver-in-Canal (RIC) hearing aid is one of the most commonly recommended styles due to its excellent sound quality and durability. This type of hearing aid has a main body that sits discreetly behind the ear, connected to a thin wire (the receiver or speaker) that runs to the front of the ear. An earbud at the end of the wire fits comfortably in the ear canal, providing clear sound directly into the ear.

RIC Hearing Aids

Behind-the-Ear (BTE)

A Behind-the-Ear (BTE) hearing aid is similar in shape to a RIC but is usually slightly larger. Instead of a receiver wire, it uses a hollow tube to deliver sound, with the receiver located in the main body of the device that sits behind the ear. A BTE is typically secured in the ear with a custom-shaped earmold, which can vary in size and visibility based on the patient's needs. This style is often recommended for young children or individuals with severe hearing loss.

BTE Hearing Aid
Types of Hearing Aids
Custom Hearing Aids

Custom Hearing Aids

Custom hearing aids are another option for most patients. Custom hearing aids offer a personalized solution for patients who require a unique fit due to atypical outer ears, dexterity challenges, or a desire for a more aesthetically pleasing option.

At Dallas ENT Group, we provide a range of custom hearing aids tailored to your specific needs and preferences. Custom earing aid options include the following:

Invisible-in-the-Canal (IIC)

​Invisible In The Canal (IIC) hearing aids are the smallest custom hearing aids available. They fit deep inside the ear canal, making them nearly invisible to others.

IIC hearing aids are ideal for those seeking a discreet option, though they have limited functionality and sound output. They are not recommended for everyone and are best suited for individuals with mild to moderate hearing loss. Our audiologist can determine if this style is appropriate for you based on your hearing loss.

Invisible-in-the-Canal (IIC) Hearing Aids

Completely-in-the-Canal (CIC)

Completely In The Canal (CIC) hearing aids sit further out than IIC aids but remain discreet. These hearing aids are custom-molded to fit inside your ear canal, offering excellent sound quality and ease of use. Depending on the shape of the patient's ear, CIC may be the smallest custom hearing aid option for some individuals. CIC hearing aids are suitable for mild to moderately severe hearing loss and are easy to insert and remove.

Completely-in-the-Canal Hearing Aids (CIC)

In-the-Canal (ITC)

In The Canal (ITC) hearing aids are slightly larger and fit partially in the ear canal, making them more visible than CIC aids. ITC hearing aids sit farther out into the bowl of the ear, allowing for more sound and functionality. They offer a good balance between discretion and power, making them a versatile choice for patients with moderately severe hearing loss and minor dexterity issues. 

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In-the-Ear (ITE)

In The Ear (ITE) hearing aids are custom-made to fit within the outer portion of a patient's ear. They are the largest custom hearing aid option and ideal for patients with very poor dexterity.

ITE hearing aids come in two styles:

  • full shell - fills most of the bowl-shaped area of the outer ear

  • half shell - fills only the lower part of the bowl of the ear

ITE hearing aids offer powerful amplification, are easier to handle, and can accommodate a wide range of hearing losses, from mild to severe. 

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Contact us to schedule a consultation and take the first step towards better hearing.

How much do hearing aids cost?

CareCredit Financing

The cost of hearing aids can vary significantly based on several factors, including the technology level, features, and size of the device. At Dallas ENT Group, our audiologist provides personalized recommendations to ensure you receive the best hearing aid for your needs. Some insurance plans may cover the cost of hearing aids, either fully or partially. We will verify your insurance benefits and inform you about your coverage options.

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For patients without hearing aid coverage, we offer CareCredit financing. CareCredit provides special financing options for healthcare expenses not typically covered by insurance, including hearing aids.

on purchases of $200 or more for healthcare costs not commonly covered by insurance, including hearing aids. With CareCredit, you can take advantage of deferred interest or no interest if paid in full promotional financing options on purchases of $200 or more. This means you can manage the cost of your hearing aids without incurring interest if you pay your balance in full by the promotional due date.

 

Schedule an appointment with our audiologist to learn more about hearing aid costs and financing options. Our team is dedicated to helping you find the most suitable and affordable hearing solution. 

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