What is the best value hearing aid solution for me?

Hearing loss can have a big impact on the quality of your life. This is because your hearing is essential for communicating, participating, socialising, relaxing and interacting with others.

If after your hearing assessment, your audiologist at Melbourne Audiology Centre, recommends treating your hearing loss with hearing aids, we recommend that you don’t delay because:

It’s normal to have a lot of questions when you are looking for hearing aids. Our audiologists can answer your questions and tailor a personalised hearing aid solution for you during a ‘Hearing aid discussion appointment’. We will:

  • show you the different styles of hearing aid and how they look on the ear
  • discuss the different level of technology in hearing aids and how the technology level relates to your needs
  • show any suitable add-on devices to the hearing aids - add-on devices are used in special situations such as watching TV or streaming music from your phone, iPad or other devices
  • discuss prices and help you to choose the best value hearing aid solution for your listening and communication needs

Book a Hearing Aid Discussion appointment. During this 1 hour appointment, we will test your hearing, discuss your listening and communication needs in detail, recommend the best hearing aids to meet your listening and communication needs and your budget.

We have been providing hearing care since 2001 and have 8 clinics across MelbourneFitzroy, Sunshine, Werribee, Burnside Heights, Thomastown, Dandenong, Templestowe and Moorabbin.

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Hearing Aid Styles

Hearing aids come in various styles, which differ in size, the way they sit on your ear and consequently how visible they are to other people.

Whilst some people don’t mind showing off their new hearing aids; after all, they are very high-tech medical products, there are still a large number of people who prefer more discreet styles.

Generally, your audiologist will guide you through the style of aids best suited to you based on; your hearing levels, the size and shape of your ear, your desired features in the hearing aid, your ability to manage the aids (e.g. changing the battery), your lifestyle and your personal preference of how it looks on your ears.

Hearing aids are available in a range of colours to match skin and hair colour, as well as an array of fashion colours to match your personality.

Invisible-in-the-Canal (IIC)

IIC hearing aids are the smallest custom hearing aid available, custom made to fit deep inside your ear canal and totally hidden from sight. They are suitable for mild to moderate hearing losses. These hearing aids are the smallest and least visible of the available styles, however the small style does have some disadvantages. IIC hearing aids have no space for features such as volume controls, directional microphones or wireless features. IIC aids cannot be fitted to small ear canals due to size restrictions.

Completely-in-the-Canal (CIC)

CIC hearing aids are similar to IICs, being custom made to fit inside your ear canal and are suitable for mild to moderate hearing losses. The difference between the IIC and CIC is that the CIC is visible at the entrance of the ear canal. As with the IIC style there is little available space for volume controls or directional microphones with CICs but they can fit slightly larger ear canals than IIC’s.

In-the-Canal (ITC)

ITC hearing aids fit partly in the ear canal, are custom made to the shape and size of your ear and are visible from the sides but not when facing the user. ITC hearing aids can accommodate mild to moderately severe hearing losses. This style may contain features such as a volume control or program button or telecoil that don’t fit in CIC aids, but the more features that are added, the larger the aid becomes.

In-the-Ear (ITE)

ITE hearing aids completely fill the outer ear and are suitable for mild to severe hearing losses. They are custom made to the size and shape of your ear. ITE aids are more visible from the front and the sides to other people and may be more vulnerable to picking up wind noise. But the larger size can make them easier to adjust and insert. The bigger batteries in these hearing aids are likely to last longer than those in the smallest aids.

Slim Tube Behind-the-Ear (BTE)

The slim tube BTE hearing aids are very small behind-the-ear style aids. The electronic parts are held in the small plastic case worn behind the ear. Sound travels from the instrument through a thin tube to a tiny dome or small custom made ear piece that is located in the ear canal. They are very discreet and difficult to see from the front or from the sides. If you have long hair they are difficult to see from the back as well. These aids can leave the ear canal more open, known as an “open-fit”, and are therefore suitable for mild to moderate high-frequency hearing losses where low-frequency hearing is still normal such as noise induced hearing loss. In addition, some people may prefer open-fit hearing aids because their perception of their own voice does not sound “plugged up”.

Receiver-in-the-Ear (RITE) or Receiver-in-the-Canal (RIC)

RITE/RIC hearing aids consist of a very small Behind-the- ear unit and a thin wire connecting it to a tiny speaker (receiver). Sound travels from the instrument located behind your ear through the thin wire to the tiny speaker positioned in the ear canal. The speaker is secured in place with either a generic ear tip (dome) or small custom made ear piece. RITE/RIC hearing aids are the most versatile style available and are becoming the most popular. They are very discreet aids and there are versions which are suitable for people with up to a severe to profound hearing loss.

Behind-the-Ear (BTE)

BTE hearing aids consist of a plastic case worn behind the ear, which holds all the electronic parts of the aid. This is connected via a silicon tube to a plastic earmould that fits inside the outer ear and ear canal. Sound travels from the hearing aid through the earmould and into the ear. Behind-the-ear hearing aids can be the most powerful and often are the easiest type to adjust.

We offer a range of wireless hearing aid accessories that complement your hearing aids and allow you to connect wirelessly to your TV, phone, tablet and more; making your hearing aids work as a personal wireless headset. They empower you to participate in almost any situation. They are great for business, home and leisure.

Wireless hearing aid accessories

Melbourne Audiology Centre offers a range of wireless hearing aid accessories that complement your hearing aids and enable you to connect and communicate effortlessly for:

  • TV and music
  • Mobile phone and other phones
  • Better voice clarity in noise or over distance with remote microphones, T-coil and FM systems
  • Entertainment - audio from your  mp3 players, computers/tablet, stereo systems
  • Lectures and schools
  • Personal remote controls
  • Teleloop for all aid styles
  • Chargers for rechargeable hearing aids
  • Remote control of your hearing aids

Brands include; the Oticon TV adaptor and ConnectClip, Phonak ComPilot and TVLink, the Widex DEX, Unitron SmartControl, uTV and Starkey SurfLink accessories. A lot of these brands enable connectivity through a device called a Streamer.

Wireless hearing aid accessories can form part of your individual hearing aid solution depending on your listening and communication needs and preferences. We can explain how each of these devices works and demonstrate them to you during your hearing aid consultation. Enquire now.

Smart Phone Apps

Recently a few manufacturers have developed Apps for the iPhone.

Assistive Listening Devices (ALD's)

ALD’s are devices that can help you hear better and there are generally are of two types; those that connect to your hearing aids and those that work alone.
You can purchase a range of ALD’s from Melbourne Audiology Centre. The ALD’s that connect with your hearing aids usually require professional advice and assistance from our audiologists, these include FM systems and remote controls. Please call us to ask about these ALD’s.

Stand-alone ALD’s are available for purchase at our online shop without the need for a consultation with our audiologists. See online shop.