Approximately 48 million Americans have some degree of hearing loss. People who are 65 or older are much more likely to experience issues with one in three elderly having problems with their hearing. If you’re looking to purchase a hearing aid, you’re not alone. Here is the cost of various types of hearing aids so you can determine what’s best for you.
There are two different types of behind-the-ear hearing aids: traditional and slim-tube. The traditional behind-the-ear hearing aid is shaped similar to a banana and has a larger body compared to the slim-tube. The receiver goes into the ear canal and attaches to the ear using a mold that is custom-made. Most wearers find behind-the-ear models comfortable and easy to use, but wax and moisture can easily limit the life of the receiver.
The slim-tube models can provide low- and high-frequency amplification. These hearing aids are much smaller than the traditional types. Slim-tubes are perfect for someone with considerable hearing loss and may require better amplification. Some standard-tubes come with telecoil, which can make it easier to use the phone. They’re easy to clean but are also vulnerable to wax and moisture build-up.
The price of these hearing aids range from $450 to $5,600 depending on the type and how advanced the technology.
These hearing aids are much smaller than behind-the-ear models. The receiver inserts directly into the ear canal while the body remains behind the ear. RIC hearing aids are preferable for many people because they are nearly invisible, lighter, and the sound quality is clearer but they can still be very susceptible to moisture and wax build-up. A plugged feeling can happen very quickly unless vented properly.
The price of receiver-in-the-canal can be as little as $120, but the price depends on the technology and fitting range you need. Keep in mind, you’ll want something that’s high-quality to ensure a proper fit and a long life for the device.
In the ear devices are custom-made to fit your ear canal. Many models are small enough to be barely noticeable, but with a smaller body and device, you'll have less room for technology. A larger body allows for features such as telecoil, directional microphone, and volume control. Unfortunately, ITEs are also vulnerable to wax and moisture, which can decrease the life of the device.
Due to the highly custom nature of this type of device, the best way to get a price quote is from an audiologist.
The final options for hearing loss are in-the-canal hearing aids. There are two different types of ITC hearing aids: traditional and completely-in-the-canal (CIC). The traditional model fits in the concha of the ear (the portion of the ear that is bowl-shaped). These devices allow volume and program control if it's an adequate size. Most devices only have room for one microphone. These devices range from $300 to $5,600.
The second option is a device that inserts completely within the ear canal or CIC. They do not need telecoil, have low visibility, and are very easy to insert. Best of all, these devices are not affected by wind noise. Unfortunately, they only have room for one microphone and require directional hearing. The price of completely-in-the-canal can range from $150 to $5,000.