Behind the Ear (BTE) Behind The Ear (BTE) Behind-the-ear (BTE) instruments have a plastic casing that rests behind the ear and houses the device’s technology. A clear plastic tube then directs amplified sound into an earmold inside the ear canal. Receiver-In-Canal (RIC) Receiver-In-Canal (RIC) Receiver-in-the-canal (RIC) instruments are small and discreet, but may not be suitable for everyone. They can be fitted in the ear canal either with a custom-made eartip or a standard dome Behind the Ear (BTE) with SLIM TUBE Behind The Ear (BTE) with SLIM TUBE Behind-the-ear instruments with slim tubes are more discreet than the standard BTE hearing aids with earmolds. They can be fitted into the ear canal either with a custom-made eartip or a standard dome. Completely-In-Canal (CIC) Completely-In-Canal (CIC) Completely-in-the-canal (CIC) instruments fit entirely in the ear canal. Only the head of a tiny plastic line, with which you remove the instrument, shows above the canal. In-The-Ear (ITE) In-The-Ear (ITE) In-the-ear (ITE) instruments house their technology components in a custom-formed earmold that fits within the outer portion of the ear. In The Canal (ITC) In-the-canal (ITC) instruments feature an earmold that fits down into the ear canal and a smaller portion that faces out into the outer ear. RECHARGEABLE HEARING AIDS Rechargeable hearing aids are now available as an option for those who have difficulty changing batteries, or who prefer not to have disposable batteries. Depending on the device, the hearing aid may also be able to interchangeably use regular, disposable hearing aid batteries when desired, such as when a person travels and does not wish to take the charger along. The rechargeable batteries last approximately one year. When the hearing aids are removed from the ears at night, they are simply placed into the special charger and are ready for use the next day. At this time, rechargeable hearing aids are only available in the Receiver-in-the-Ear and Behind-the-Ear styles. Do You Have Single-Sided Deafness and Feel Left Out in Some Situations? When you have one deaf ear that is unaidable you may hear pretty well in one-to-one conversation in quiet, or when the person speaking is on your better side, but you probably have difficulty when conversation originates on the side of the poor ear. People with this problem become accustomed to positioning themselves so that the poor ear is away from the speaker. However, many people find there are times this is not possible. For example, a meeting around a boardroom table where speakers are on both sides of the listener, or a cab driver with deafness in the right ear (next to the passenger). In social situations it is not always possible to have the entire group in a favourable position and conversation on the poor side is missed. There can be safety concerns when crossing the street. If you experience problems due to deafness on one side, there is help. CROS hearing aids pick up the sound on the deaf side and re-route it to the better hearing ear. Hence the acronym “CROS” – Contralateral Routing of the Signal. While CROS hearing aids do not restore your ability to hear in the poor ear itself, they do make you aware of the sound or conversation coming from that side of you. If you have hearing loss in your better ear, amplification can be provided through the instrument on that side, so that you have pick up of sound on the deaf side and amplification of all sound on the better side. This arrangement is known as BICROS.