You’ve been putting off calling us to find out if you need hearing aids, but you’ve finally decided it’s time. You’ve been resisting this like so many other people. But the difficulty of going through life without being able to hear has finally become too much.
So it’s a bit disheartening when you’re at the hearing specialist’s office and you learn that you’re going to need to wait another two weeks for custom fit hearing aids.
That means that you will be losing some of life’s treasured moments for two more weeks. But you could try a basic little device add on called a hearing aid dome instead.
What exactly is a hearing aid dome?
They sound kind of epic, right? Like hearing aids fighting in some type of ancient mythical arena. Welcome to the Hearing Aid Dome: Two hearing aids enter…but only one leaves!
It’s not quite that exciting. They are rather cool though. 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 connect to the tubing of your hearing aid and fit on the part that goes in your ear canal. You can use them with both behind-the-ear and in-ear models. And they basically do two things:
- They guarantee that the speaker of the hearing aid is sitting in an optimal position in your ear. And they help secure the speaker in place. That way it’s not wiggling around.
- They can help control the amount of external sound you hear, particularly when that external sound can interfere with the functionality of your hearing aid. 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. There are several hearing aid dome styles, so we will help you pick the one that’s best for your situation.
What is the difference between hearing aid domes?
Most come in open and closed styles, 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.
These domes let less external sound in through fewer and smaller holes. For people with more profound hearing loss, background noise can be quite distracting and this kind of dome can help with that.
Power domes totally block the ear canal and have no holes. With these, nearly no external sound can get in. These are most practical for extremely profound hearing loss.
Do hearing aid domes need to be swapped out?
Every two to three months will be the ideal schedule for changing your hearing aid domes (your ears are not the dirtiest place, but they aren’t the cleanest, either).
For most individuals, hearing aid domes can be worn right out of the box. That’s one of the greatest things about them.
How will I benefit by using hearing aid buds?
There are numerous reasons why hearing aid domes are popular. Here are some prevailing advantages:
- Hearing aid domes can be more discrete: Hearing aid domes are fairly small, particularly when they’re tucked inside your ear. In this way, they can be rather discrete.
- You’re able to hear your own voice: A natural level of sound can get through some models of hearing aid domes. So you will still be able to hear your own voice. This makes the clarity of sound feel a lot more natural, which means you’re more likely to use your hearing aids far more often.
- Everything sounds a bit more natural: You can be sure your hearing aids create a clear, natural sound quality by selecting the right type of hearing aid domes. That’s because some sound will still (probably) get through. Once again, this depends on the style of dome, and we will help you with this.
- No fitting time: Not needing to wait is one of the best advantages of hearing aid domes. You can put them in and use your hearing aid immediately. This is a perfect solution 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. For patients who want faster results, hearing aid domes can provide a way to achieve that without compromising the quality of your sound clarity.
And again, this will mean you’re less likely to leave your hearing aid sitting in a drawer.
Are there drawbacks to hearing aid domes?
As with any hearing device or medical procedure, there are some drawbacks and trade-offs to hearing aid domes, trade=offs you’ll want to consider before deciding. Here are a few of the most common:
- They can sometimes be uncomfortable: Some people don’t like the feeling of something filling their ear canal. Hearing specialists call this sensation “occlusion,” and some individuals can find it extremely uncomfortable. Also, your hearing aid dome can become stuck in your ear if you pull it out too fast or if you don’t keep it clean. You’ll probably need to come in and see us to have it removed if this happens.
- Occasionally, they can cause feedback: Feedback, though not very common, occasionally does happen. This is particularly true for people who have high-frequency hearing loss.
- Some forms of hearing loss aren’t suitable for hearing aid domes: As an example, hearing aid domes won’t be the best option if you have high frequency hearing loss or profound hearing loss. For people with high-frequency hearing loss, once again, it’s the feedback that becomes the issue. For people who have profound hearing loss, it’s really the hearing aid itself that’s the issue: the kind of hearing aid commonly associated with hearing aid domes is usually not large or powerful enough for this kind of hearing loss.
So are hearing aid domes right for me?
It’s mostly a personal decision whether you use hearing aid domes. It’s up to you but we can help. And we will be able to walk you through all the pros and cons related to your personal hearing health.
For some people, it may be worth waiting the extra two weeks for a custom-fit device. For others, the immediate results of hearing aids you can use today will create healthy, lifelong hearing habits.
The good thing is that you have options.