You’ve been avoiding 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 going through life without being able to hear has finally become too much.
So when you do finally come in and then you learn that you will still have to wait another couple of weeks before you obtain your custom fit hearing aids, it can be discouraging.
That means that you will be losing some of life’s precious moments for two more weeks. But you could try a basic little device add on called a hearing aid dome instead.
What are hearing aid domes?
Doesn’t that sound sort of epic? Like some kind of arena where hearing aids duel in ancient, mythological combat. Welcome to the Hearing Aid Dome: Two hearing aids enter…but only one leaves!
Well, it’s a little less exciting than that. But they are pretty neat. Hearing aid domes are like tiny earbuds that you can place at the end of your hearing aid speaker. Usually made out of silicone or plastic, they attach to the tubing of your hearing aid and fit around the part that goes inside of your ear canal. You can use them with both behind-the-ear and in-ear models. And they generally do two things:
- They guarantee that the speaker of the hearing aid is seated in an ideal position in your ear. And they position the speaker so it won’t move around in your ear.
- On occasion, external sound can interfere with the sound of your hearing aid and hearing aid domes help stop that by controlling the amount of outside sound. Hearing aid domes work to improve the sound quality and offer an extra bit of control when used properly.
Those small bulbs at the end of earbuds are similar to hearing aid domes. There are multiple hearing aid dome types, so we will help you pick the one that’s best for your needs.
Different types of hearing aid domes
Open types and closed types each let in different levels of ambient sound.
Hearing aid dome models include:
These have openings in the dome that allow more outside sound to pass through and into your ears. This helps your ear process natural sounds along with the benefit of amplification.
As the name implies, these domes have fewer holes and block more ambient sound than open domes can. For individuals with more significant hearing loss, ambient noise can be very distracting and this type of dome can help with that.
Power domes totally block the ear canal and have no holes. This means virtually no sound at all can get into the ear canal. These domes will be best for individuals with very severe hearing loss.
Do hearing aid domes need to be changed?
For best effect, you should change your hearing aid domes every 2-3 months (your ears aren’t the dirtiest place, but they aren’t the cleanest, either).
For most people, hearing aid domes can be used right out of the box. That’s one of the greatest things about them.
What are the benefits of hearing aid domes?
Hearing aid domes are prevalent for a wide variety of reasons. The most common advantages include the following:
- Everything sounds a little more natural: You can be certain your hearing aids produce a clear, natural sound quality by picking the right type of hearing aid domes. That’s because some sound will still (likely) get through. We can help you identify the kind that’s best for you.
- Hearing aid domes can be more discrete: Hearing aid domes aren’t very big, particularly when they’re in your ear. They’re rather discrete in this way.
- No fitting time: One of the most prominent (and immediate) advantages of hearing aid domes is that you don’t have to wait. You can un-box them, pop them on your hearing aid and you’re good to go. This is an ideal solution for individuals who don’t want to wait weeks for custom fit hearing aids. It’s also great for people who want to try out their hearing aids before they purchase them. 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 can hear your own voice: Some hearing aid domes are created to let a natural level of sound come in. This means you will still be able to hear your own voice as you naturally would. You’re more likely to wear your hearing aids more if they sound clear and natural.
And, once again, this means many individuals are more likely to use those hearing aids more often.
What are the downsides to hearing aid domes?
You’ll want to be aware of some of the drawbacks and trade-offs that come with hearing aid domes. Here are a few of the most common:
- They’re not always comfortable: Having something plugging the ear canal can be extremely uncomfortable for some individuals. Hearing specialists call this feeling “occlusion,” and some people can find it intensely unpleasant. Also, your hearing aid dome can get lodged in your ear if you pull it out too quickly or if you don’t keep it clean. If this occurs, you’ll most likely need to come see us to have it removed.
- They can occasionally be more prone to feedback: Feedback isn’t necessarily typical, but it can occur. For people who are dealing with high frequency hearing loss, this is especially true.
- Not suitable for all types of hearing loss: For example, if you are suffering from profound hearing loss or high frequency hearing loss, hearing aid domes might not be the best solution for you. For those with high-frequency hearing loss, again, it’s the feedback that becomes the problem. For those who have profound hearing loss, it’s really the hearing aid itself that’s the issue: the type of hearing aid commonly associated with hearing aid domes is normally not large or powerful enough for this type of hearing loss.
Should I use hearing aid domes?
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 help you understand all the pros and cons related to your personal hearing health.
For some individuals, it might be worth waiting the extra couple of weeks for a custom-fit device. For others, the quick results of hearing aids you can use today will create healthy, lifelong hearing habits.
You have options and that’s the nice thing.