What are the Best Invisible Hearing Aids?
If you’re struggling with hearing loss but don’t want hearing aids that can be seen by others, you’re in luck! In the past few years there have been a number of new hearing aids introduced in the marketplace which are 100% invisible.
Want an invisible hearing aid? It’s all in the name!
Hearing aids come in wide variety of styles, from large behind-the-ear devices, to small custom molded in-the-ear devices. Anytime you see a hearing aid make or model, you should also see a three letter acronym next to it, such as BTE (behind-the-ear), or ITE (in-the-ear). If you want truly invisible hearing aids, then look for the letters IIC, which stands for invisible-in-canal. These are the smallest hearing aids on the market and are built specifically to be invisible.
What is the process for getting invisible hearing aids?
Being fit with hearing aids is a bit of an involved process. You want to allow yourself at least 30 days and a few appointments with a local hearing provider to be properly fit with new invisible hearing aids.
Here’s how the process works:
- Get a hearing test: The first step is always getting a comprehensive hearing test from a local hearing professional. A hearing test is completely pain-free, usually takes 30 minutes to an hour, and is usually around $100 or less. The purpose of the test is to ensure that you are a candidate for invisible hearing aids, because not everyone is. If your hearing loss is bad enough, or your ear canals are not large enough, invisible hearing aids will not work for you.
- Get impressions made: At the end of your test, your local hearing provider will take an impression of your ear(s).The impression-taking process is usually completed in less than 5 minutes. During this time, the hearing provider will inject a silicone putty into your ear canal. The putty will dry for a few minutes, your hearing provider will pull the newly formed impression of out your ear, and you are done. This process can be a little uncomfortable for some, because the putty must be injected deep into the ear canal if you want the hearing aids to be invisible.
- Get fit with your hearing aids: About 10 days after your hearing provider sends your impressions to the manufacturer, your hearing aids will arrive at the provider’s office and you’ll have your first fitting appointment. This appointment usually lasts between 15 minutes and an hour. Your hearing provider will ensure the hearing aids fit right, sound right, and will provide you with operation and maintenance instructions.
- Go to at least one follow-up appointment: Between 7-14 days after your initial fitting appointment, it’s a good idea to go to at least one follow-up appointment with your hearing provider. At this appointment, you’ll be able to discuss any issues you’re having with your new hearing aids; such as the way they are fitting, sounding, or performing. This follow-up appointment gives your provider time to remedy any issues you may be having while you are still in your trial period. You may schedule several follow-up appointments during your trial period until you are either satisfied with the hearing aids, or decide to return them. Usually, these follow-up appointments are included in the purchase price of the hearing aids.
How much do invisible hearing aids cost?
The price of invisible hearing aids will range from around $1000 per hearing aid for an entry-level hearing aid, to $3000+ per hearing aid for the most advanced invisible hearing aids available. It’s your hearing provider’s responsibility to determine whether you need an entry-level or advanced hearing aid. In determining which is right for you, your hearing provider will look at your test results and ask you questions about your hearing loss, lifestyle, and your expectations for the hearing aids.
As a general rule of thumb, if you just want hearing aids to help you hear better around the house, entry-level hearing aids will suffice. If you lead an active lifestyle and want the hearing aids to sound good in a wider range of environments, more advanced models will be a better choice.
Are there any reasons to not get invisible hearing aids?
Yes. In fact, we wrote a whole post about it: 3 Reasons Why You May Not Want Invisible Hearing Aids. In short, they aren’t a good option for everyone, and certain trade-offs in functionality have to be made if you want to wear invisible hearing aids.
What is the best invisible hearing aid?
Because everyone’s hearing loss is unique and their needs from hearing aids differ, it’s hard to say what the “best” invisible hearing aid may be. However, there are a few that I think stand out from the pack, and that a lot of our customers ask for.
My Favorite Non-Custom Invisible Hearing Aid
Watch a video overview below!
Why I like this hearing aid
- You don’t have to wait for an ear mold to be made, it is “one size fits all”. Unlike most other invisible hearing aids on the market, the Signia Silk isn’t custom-built.
- You can control it from a smartphone. Signia Silk is one of the few invisible hearing aids that can be remotely controlled from a smartphone, both Android or iOS phones.
- It’s non-custom design helps alleviate the feeling of echo that some hearing aids cause.
My Favorite Custom Invisible Hearing Aid
Why I like this hearing aid
- Starkey has been doing invisible hearing aids longer than any manufacturer, and in our opinion the Starkey Picasso fits deeper, more comfortably, and more hidden than most other invisible products on the market. If what you want is a custom-built and invisible hearing aid, Picasso is an excellent first choice.
- Starkey is known for having excellent feedback management, which means Picasso hearing aids can provide a lot of gain (volume/power), with little whistling, which is no small feat. If you need a really powerful and invisible hearing aid, Picasso is a great choice.
As you can see, there is a lot to consider when determining which invisible hearing aid may be right for you. And in fact, there may be no invisible hearing aid that is right for you. Whether or not you are a good candidate for invisible hearing aids is a decision that should ultimately be left to your hearing provider to decide, so a hearing test is the critical first step before you get too far down this path.
Do you want to learn more about hearing aids, and how to make sure you get the best product, at the best price and value possible?