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In-the-Ear (ITE)

In-the-ear hearing aids (ITEs) include all hearing aids that are worn entirely in the ear (rather than behind it), including in-the-canal (ITC), Completely-in-Canal (CIC) and invisible-in-canal (IIC).

Types of In-the-Ear Hearing Aids

In-the-Ear (ITE)
The housing of this hearing aid completely fills the ear. The advantages include a longer battery life, the availability of a power version for severe hearing loss, and improved operation.

In-the-Canal (ITC)
This is a small and discreet model. The hearing aid housing sits in the ear canal, thus only filling half of the ear.

Completely-in-Canal (CIC)
This used to be the smallest model,  the CIC offers the ultimate in discretion and typically have a nylon strand to help the removal from the ear.

Invisible-in-Canal (IIC)
This subgroup of CIC devices are hearing aids that are worn deep in the ear canal and are often completely invisible. Phonak's Titanium is an example of an IIC hearing aid.

In-the-Ear (ITE) Hearing Aids

In-the-ear (ITE) hearing aids are a good option if you want an easy-to-handle device. The traditional ITE hearing aid comes in different sizes and are typically worn fully inside the ear or ear canal. These types of hearing aids can house many electronic features within one single case, providing room for more features including a telecoil, multiple directional microphones and more. 

All the components are located inside a small shell. Volume can be adjusted and programs can be selected by remote control. Many models can be connected wirelessly to electronic devices such as mobile phones and TV sets (additional accessories are required).

Summary
  • More discreet than behind-the-ear options
  • Convenient for people who wear glasses
  • More comfortable to wear than other ITE models

In-the-Canal (ITC) Hearing Aids

As the name implies, in-the-canal (ITC) hearing aids fit in the ear canal. They are slightly larger and extend a little farther out than completely-in-the-canal (CIC) hearing aids. However, due to their slightly larger size, in-the-canal (ITC) hearing aids can fit more features than CICs. Like CICs and ITEs, ITC hearing aids are custom fit for your ear. They fit slightly farther out than CIC hearing aids and are partially visible. Wearers may choose from a variety of flesh-toned casings, making them difficult to notice.

Summary
  • More discrete than a ITE
  • Cuts down on feedback due to placement
  • Wireless connectivity with additional accessories

Completely-in-Canal (CIC) Hearing Aids

Completely-in-the-canal (CIC) hearing aids are perfect if you lead an active lifestyle—or if you want a hearing aid that’s virtually invisible to others. CICs are placed directly into the ear canal, making them one of the most discreet devices on the market. Because of their smaller size, they may not have as many advanced features as other, larger models. 

These one-piece hearing aids are custom moulded to your ear canal. A small speaker rests on the back of the aid, while the microphone and battery door is on its face. 

Summary
  • Very discreet and light weight
  • Custom fit to your ear and canal
  • Due to it's small size its features can be restricted

Invisible-in-Canal (IIC) Hearing Aids

Invisible-in-the-canal (IIC) hearing aids are worn deep in the ear canal. IICs are inserted directly into the ear canal and can be easily removed with a nylon string. These hearing aids are a good choice if you lead a moderately to heavily active lifestyle—or if you do not want your hearing aids to be visible to others. While they are popular among hearing aid wearers, IICs may not be the best choice for users with more severe or profound hearing loss, since these hearing aids do not provide the same amount of power that other, larger models do.

Summary
  • Least noticeable hearing aid
  • The shell can be 3D printed in Titanium making it light weight and durable
  • Due to its size (like the CIC) its features can be restricted
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