After months (possibly even years) of waiting, you’ve finally resolved to give us a call to see if you need hearing aids. You’ve been resisting this like so many others. But the hassle, the lost moments, the missing conversations, they all finally became too hard to ignore.
So when you do finally come in and then you learn that you will still need to wait another two weeks before you get your custom fit hearing aids, it can be disheartening.
That’s another two weeks struggling with those lost moments before you can start getting them back. But you could try a basic little device add on known as a hearing aid dome instead.
What are hearing aid domes?
They sound kind of grand, right? Like some kind of arena where hearing aids duel in ancient, mythical combat. Only one hearing aid can emerge victorious from the hearing aid dome.
Well, it’s a little less thrilling than that. But they are rather neat. Hearing aid domes go on the end of your hearing aid speakers like little earbuds. Generally made of plastic or silicone, they fit around that little bit that goes in your ear canal, connecting to the tubing of your hearing aid. You can use them on both behind-the-ear and in-ear models. Here are the two general functions:
- They position the hearing aid speaker (the part that you listen to) in an optimal position inside of your ear canal. And they secure the speaker so it won’t move around in your ear.
- On occasion, outside sound can interfere with the sound of your hearing aid and hearing aid domes help stop that by regulating the amount of outside sound. Hearing aid domes work to enhance the sound quality and provide an extra bit of control when used correctly.
Domes for hearing aids look kind of like those bulbs at the end of your earbuds. There are several hearing aid dome styles, so we will help you select the one that’s best for your needs.
What is the difference between hearing aid domes?
Open types and closed types each let in different amounts of background sound.
Hearing aid domes come in different kinds, including:
These have openings in the dome that allow more outside sound to pass through and into your ears. This helps your ear process ambient sounds along with the advantage of amplification.
As the name suggests, these domes have fewer holes and block more ambient sound than open domes do. These are better for more advanced hearing loss where ambient noise can be a distraction.
Power domes totally block the ear canal and have no venting. This means virtually no sound at all can pass into the ear canal. These domes will be ideal for people with extremely severe hearing loss.
Do hearing aid domes need to be changed?
Every two to three months will be the best schedule for changing your hearing aid domes (your ears can be a bit dirty in there).
Hearing aid domes can typically be used right out of the box. That’s one of the greatest things about them.
How will I benefit by wearing hearing aid buds?
There are a number of reasons why hearing aid domes are prevalent. The most widespread benefits include the following:
- No fitting time: Not needing to wait is one of the best advantages of hearing aid domes. You can pop them in and use your hearing aid right away. For people who don’t want to wait for custom fit hearing aids, it’s the ideal solution. And if you want to demo a hearing aid before you purchase it, they’re good for that too. For patients who want results faster, hearing aid domes can provide a way to accomplish that without sacrificing the quality of your sound clarity.
- You’re able to hear your own voice: A natural level of sound can get through some types of hearing aid domes. So you will still be able to hear your own voice. This makes the clarity of sound seem much more natural, which means you’re more likely to wear your hearing aids far more often.
- Everything sounds a little more natural: By selecting the right hearing aid dome type, you can ensure that your hearing aids produce a natural overall sound and enhanced sound clarity. More than likely, some sound will still get through and that’s the reason for this. We can help you identify the kind that’s ideal for you.
- Hearing aid domes can be more discrete: Hearing aid domes are pretty small, especially when they’re tucked inside your ear. In this way, they can be pretty discrete.
And again, this will mean you’re less likely to leave your hearing aid sitting in a drawer.
What are the drawbacks to hearing aid domes?
You’ll want to be aware of some of the downsides and trade-offs that come with hearing aid domes. Among the most prevalent are the following:
- They can sometimes be uncomfortable: Some individuals don’t like the feeling of something filling their ear canal. Some people find this sensation, called “occlusion” by hearing specialist, extremely uncomfortable. Additionally, if you pull your hearing aid dome out too quickly (or don’t clean it often enough), there’s the chance that it might separate from the tubing and get stuck in your ear canal. You’ll probably need to come in and see us to get it removed if this happens.
- They can occasionally be more prone to feedback: Feedback isn’t necessarily common, but it can occur. This is especially true for those who are dealing with high-frequency hearing loss.
- Not ideal for all forms of hearing loss: For example, if you have profound hearing loss or high frequency hearing loss, hearing aid domes might not be the preferred option for you. Again, the feedback can become an issue with high frequency hearing loss. It’s the hearing aid itself that’s a problem with profound hearing loss: you’ll require something that’s bigger and which has more power than the styles commonly associated with hearing aid domes.
So are hearing aid domes for me?
Inevitably, the decision of whether you should use hearing aid domes or not is mostly a personal one. It’s your choice but we can help. And we will be able to walk you through all the pros and cons related to your unique hearing health.
For some individuals, it might be worth waiting the extra couple of weeks for a custom-fit device. Others will build healthy lifelong hearing habits by choosing a solution that allows them to begin using their new hearing aids immediately.
You have options and that’s the good thing.