You’ve been putting off calling us to find out if you need hearing aids, but you’ve finally decided it’s time. Like many other people, you’ve been resisting this. But the difficulty of living life without being able to hear has finally become too much.
So it’s a bit discouraging when you’re at the hearing specialist’s office and you learn that you’re going to have to wait another two weeks for custom fit hearing aids.
That’s another two weeks coping with those lost moments before you can begin getting them back. But you could try a simple little device add on known as a hearing aid dome instead.
What are hearing aid domes?
They sound sort of grand, right? Like some kind of arena where hearing aids duel in ancient, mythical combat. Only one hearing aid can come forth victorious from the hearing aid dome.
Well, it’s a bit less exciting than that. But they are pretty neat. Hearing aid domes go on the end of your hearing aid speakers like tiny 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. They’re made for behind-the-ear or inside-the-ear-canal models of hearing aids. And they basically do two things:
- They assure that the speaker of the hearing aid is sitting in an optimal position in your ear. And they secure the speaker so it won’t jiggle around in your ear.
- Sometimes, external sound can impede 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 improve the sound quality and offer an extra bit of control when used correctly.
Those little bulbs at the end of earbuds are similar to hearing aid domes. You will have to choose the hearing aid dome that’s ideal for you from several types, and we can help you do that.
What is the difference between hearing aid domes?
Most come in open and closed types, each letting in more or less ambient sound.
Hearing aid dome models include:
With these, more sound is capable of passing through little holes in the dome. This helps your ear process ambient sounds along with the benefit of amplification.
As the name indicates, these domes have fewer openings and block more ambient sound than open domes can. These are better for more pronounced hearing loss where ambient noise can be a distraction.
Power domes have no holes and completely block external sounds. With these, nearly no external sound can get in. These are most effective for extremely profound hearing loss.
How frequently should you change your hearing aid domes?
For best effect, you should change your hearing aid domes every 2-3 months (your ears can be a bit unclean in there).
For most people, hearing aid domes can be worn right out of the box. In fact, that’s one of their primary benefits.
What are the benefits of hearing aid domes?
Hearing aid domes are popular for a wide array of reasons. Here are some prevailing benefits:
- Hearing aid domes can be more discrete: Hearing aid domes aren’t very big, especially when they’re in your ear. In this way, they can be pretty discrete.
- You’re able to hear your own voice: A natural amount of sound can get through some types of hearing aid domes. So you will still be capable of hearing your own voice. You’re more likely to use your hearing aids more often if they sound clear and natural.
- The external world sounds more clear and natural: By choosing the right hearing aid dome type, you can ensure that your hearing aids produce a natural overall sound and improved sound clarity. Most likely, some sound will still get through and that’s the reason for this. Again, this depends on the style of dome, and we will help you with this.
- No fitting time: Not having to wait is one of the greatest advantages of hearing aid domes. You can un-box them, put them on your hearing aid and you’re good to go. This is an ideal solution for people who don’t want to wait weeks for custom fit hearing aids. It’s also good for people who want to try out their hearing aids before they purchase them. For patients who want faster results, hearing aid domes can provide a way to accomplish that without sacrificing the quality of your sound clarity.
And, again, this means many people are more likely to wear those hearing aids more often.
What are the drawbacks to hearing aid domes?
As with any hearing device or medical treatment, there are some downsides and trade-offs to hearing aid domes, trade=offs you’ll want to consider before deciding. Among the most prevalent are the following:
- They aren’t always comfortable: Having something filling the ear canal can be very uncomfortable for some people. Hearing specialists call this sensation “occlusion,” and some individuals can find it extremely unpleasant. Additionally, if you pull your hearing aid dome out too fast (or don’t clean it frequently enough), there’s the possibility that it may separate from the tubing and get stuck in your ear canal. If this happens, you’ll likely need to come see us to get it removed.
- They can occasionally be more prone to feedback: Feedback isn’t necessarily common, but it can happen. This is particularly true for people who are dealing with high-frequency hearing loss.
- Some types of hearing loss aren’t suitable for hearing aid domes: As an example, hearing aid domes won’t be the ideal choice if you have high frequency hearing loss or profound hearing loss. For people with high-frequency hearing loss, again, it’s the feedback that becomes the problem. It’s the hearing aid itself that’s an issue with profound hearing loss: the kind of hearing aid typically associated with hearing aid domes is normally not large or powerful enough for this form of hearing loss.
Should I use hearing aid domes?
It’s mostly a personal decision whether you use hearing aid domes. It’s your choice but we can help. And we will go over your individual needs and help advise you on the pros and cons.
Some people may do better waiting for a custom fitting. For others, the quick results of hearing aids you can wear today will create healthy, lifelong hearing habits.
The nice thing is that you’ve got options.