After months (possibly even years) of waiting, you’ve finally decided to give us a call to see if you need hearing aids. Like many, you’ve been resisting this. But the inconvenience, 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 have to wait another two weeks before you get your custom fit hearing aids, it can be discouraging.
That’s another two weeks coping with those lost moments before you can start getting them back. Of course, there is another option: a deceptively basic device add-on, known as hearing aid domes.
What exactly is a hearing aid dome?
Doesn’t that sound kind of epic? Like some type of arena where hearing aids duel in ancient, mythological combat. Only one hearing aid can emerge victorious from the hearing aid dome.
Well, it’s a bit less thrilling than that. But they are rather neat. Hearing aid domes are put on the end of your hearing aid speakers like small earbuds. Usually made out of silicone or plastic, they connect 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 basically do two things:
- They situate the hearing aid speaker (the part that you listen to) in the most effective position inside of your ear canal. And they help keep the speaker in place. That way it’s not moving around.
- They can help control the amount of external sound you hear, particularly when that outside sound can impede the functionality of your hearing aid. When used correctly, hearing aid domes give you some extra control and work to improve sound clarity.
Domes for hearing aids look sort of like those bulbs at the end of your earbuds. You will have to choose the hearing aid dome that’s ideal for you from a number of types, and we can assist you in doing that.
What is the difference between hearing aid domes?
Open types and closed types each let in different levels of background sound.
Hearing aid domes come in different kinds, including:
With these, more sound is capable of passing through little holes in the dome. You get the benefit of amplification while still being able to process outside sounds.
As the name suggests, these domes have fewer holes and stop more ambient sound than open domes can. For individuals with more significant hearing loss, background noise can be quite distracting and this kind of dome can help with that.
Power domes don’t have any holes and totally block outside sounds. With these, nearly no external sound can get in. These domes will be best for individuals with extremely severe hearing impairment.
How frequently should you change your hearing aid domes?
Every two to three months will be the best schedule for changing your hearing aid domes (your ears can be a bit unclean in there).
For most people, hearing aid domes can be worn right out of the box. That’s one of the best things about them.
What are the advantages of hearing aid domes?
There are numerous reasons why hearing aid domes are prevalent. Here are a few prevailing benefits:
- No fitting time: One of the most prominent (and immediate) benefits of hearing aid domes is that you don’t have to wait. You can pop them in and use your hearing aid immediately. This is a perfect option for individuals who don’t want to wait weeks for custom fit hearing aids. It’s also good for individuals who want to try out their hearing aids before they buy them. With hearing aid domes, you don’t have to sacrifice sound clarity to get quicker results.
- Everything sounds a bit more natural: You can be certain your hearing aids create a clear, natural sound quality by choosing the right type of hearing aid domes. That’s because some sound will still (likely) get through. Once again, this depends on the type of dome, and we can help you with this.
- Hearing aid domes can be more discrete: Hearing aid domes aren’t that big, particularly when they’re in your ear. In this way, they can be rather 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. This makes the clarity of sound seem much more natural, which means you’re more likely to use your hearing a great deal more often.
And again, this will mean you’re not as likely to leave your hearing aid sitting in a drawer.
Are there drawbacks to hearing aid domes?
You’ll want to be mindful 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: Having something plugging the ear canal can be very uncomfortable for some people. Some individuals find this feeling, called “occlusion” by hearing specialist, extremely uncomfortable. In addition, if you pull your hearing aid dome out too fast (or don’t clean it frequently enough), there’s the chance that it might separate from the tubing and get stuck in your ear canal. You’ll most likely need to come in and see us to get it removed if this happens.
- Sometimes, they can cause feedback: Feedback isn’t necessarily common, but it can occur. For people who have high frequency hearing loss, this is particularly true.
- Some forms of hearing loss aren’t suitable for hearing aid domes: For instance, if you have profound hearing loss or high frequency hearing loss, hearing aid domes may not be the best option for you. For those with high-frequency hearing loss, once again, it’s the feedback that becomes the issue. For people with profound hearing loss, it’s really the hearing aid itself that’s the problem: you’ll need something that’s bigger and which has more power than the styles commonly associated with hearing aid domes.
Should I get 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 specific needs and help advise you on the pros and cons.
Some individuals might do better waiting for a custom fitting. Others will create healthy lifelong hearing habits by opting for a solution that allows them to begin using their new hearing aids immediately.
You’ve got options and that’s the nice thing.