Looking for the best hearing aids will expose you to a variety of designs, including receiver-in-canal (RIC). The RIC hearing aid shares numerous benefits with behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aid while having some distinctive advantages particular to the receiver in canal. Continue reading to discover the pros and cons of RIC devices.
In behind-the-ear and in-the-ear hearing aids, the device’s components are all held in the same case: either behind the ear or in the ear. RIC hearing aids, on the other hand, separate the components into two major sections. The device’s microphone and amplifier are housed in a small case that rests behind the ear, while the receiver is found in a small bud that rests in the ear canal. The two parts are connected by a thin clear tube.
There are several advantages associated with separating the receiver from the microphone and amplifier. Feedback and occlusion tend to be much less of a problem with RIC devices than they are with other hearing aids. With the ear canal open, wearers generally report a more natural sound which is judged to be more comfortable. RIC hearing aids are favored by people with mild to moderate hearing losses because they amplify high-pitched sounds very well.
The split configuration of the RIC has a few other advantages. Both the case that fits behind the ear and the receiver in the ear are easy to hide. Its small size also allows it to fit very comfortably in and on the ear.
RIC devices do have several disadvantages. Frequent repairs to the receiver are one drawback to the RIC because the receiver end is vulnerable to moisture in the ear canal. Their comfort can also be a disadvantage: because users do not feel them in or on their ear, they are less likely to notice if they lose them. Lastly, this style of hearing aid is often higher in price than its cousins, so some shoppers may have difficulty fitting them into their budgets.
Receiver-in-ear hearing aids do have their flaws, but their numerous advantages make them a worthwhile choice for many listeners. Seeking the advice and assistance of a hearing specialist is the next step in selecting the best hearing aid for your hearing loss and lifestyle.