If you've recently discovered that you have hearing loss and are looking into your hearing aid options, one that you're going to come across quite often is CIC hearing aids. CIC stands for "completely in canal." These hearing aids are completely placed inside the canal of your ear – there's no external component. Read on to learn more about the pros and cons of CIC hearing aids so you can make an informed decision as to whether or not they're best for you.
Pro: Onlookers can't see CIC hearing aids.
If you don't want anyone to know you wear hearing aids, CIC hearing aids are absolutely a great option. Nobody will be able to tell you're wearing hearing aids unless they peer directly into your ear canal. There's no bulky portion behind your ear or sticking out of your ear. CIC hearing aids are just a little bigger than a pencil eraser.
Pro: CIC hearing aids can be worn for months on end.
Most patients are able to put the hearing aids in and then leave them in place for months at a time. They only need to be removed occasionally to clean the ears or to replace the batteries. This reduces the chance that you'll lose the hearing aid, and it saves you time.
Con: Changing the batteries can be difficult.
Because they're so tiny, CIC hearing aids can only hold very small batteries. As a result, they tend to go through these batteries rather quickly. And changing the batteries is a bit of an intricate procedure. If you have limited dexterity or arthritis in your hands, you may not be able to change the batteries yourself. You'll want to make sure you have a friend or relative around to do this for you.
Con: They're not suitable for major hearing loss.
If your doctor has classified your hearing loss as mild to moderate, then CIC hearing aids should be able to amplify your hearing sufficiently. However, if you have more severe hearing loss, they won't be able to provide sufficient amplification -- and you're probably better off with a traditional, behind-the-ear hearing aid. If you have mild hearing loss and choose a CIC hearing aid now, there's a chance you'll need to switch to a different style of hearing aid if your hearing loss continues to worsen.
To learn more about CIC hearing aids, speak with an audiologist in your area. They can let you try various styles of hearing aids and discover which is best suited for your needs.