Types of hearing aids icon

Types of Hearing Aids in Michigan, Minnesota, & Florida

There are many different types of hearing aids in a wide range of budgets.

Completely-in-the-Canal Hearing Aids An illustrated Completely-in-the-Canal Hearing Aid

Completely-in-the-Canal Hearing Aids

A completely-in-the-canal (CIC) hearing aid is designed to fit inside your ear canal, and can’t be seen. It improves mild to moderate hearing loss in adults.


  • Is the smallest and least visible type
  • Is less likely to pick up wind noise


  • Very small batteries have a shorter lifespan and can be difficult to handle
In-the-Canal Hearing Aids An illustrated In-the-Canal Hearing Aid

In-the-Canal Hearing Aids

An in-the-canal (ITC) hearing aid is custom molded and fits partly in the ear canal, so it can be only partially seen by others. This style can improve mild to moderate hearing loss in adults.


  • Less noticeable than larger styles of hearing aids
  • Includes more features that won’t fit into completely-in-the-canal aids


  • Can be tricky to adjust because of their small size
  • Earwax can clog the speakers 
In-the-Ear Hearing Aids An illustrated In-the-Ear Hearing Aid

In-the-Ear Hearing Aids

In-the-Ear Hearing Aids are custom molded to your ear and are helpful to people with mild to severe hearing loss. They are made in two styles:

  • Full Shell – fits most of the bowl-shaped area of your ear.
  • Half Shell – fills only the lower part of your ear. 


  • Includes more features such as a volume control and two directional microphones for noise control.
  • May be easier to handle.
  • Larger battery has longer life, with several options for rechargeable batteries.


  • Small size can still be tricky to adjust.
  • Speakers can still be clogged by earwax.
Behind-the-Ear Hearing Aids An illustrated Behind-the-Ear Hearing Aid

Behind-the-Ear Hearing Aids

Behind-the-Ear (BTE) Hearing Aids rest behind your ear and connect to a custom ear mold that fits in your ear canal. The two pieces are connected by a small, translucent tube, making it more discreet. This is the most commonly prescribed hearing aid and is useful for all ages and almost all types of hearing loss.


  • Mini designs are barely visible
  • Has directional microphones
  • Capable of more amplification than other styles
  • May be available with rechargeable batteries


  • May pick up more wind noise than other styles
Receiver-in-the-Canal or Receiver-in-the-Ear Hearing Aids An illustrated Receiver-in-the-Canal or Receiver-in-the-Ear Hearing Aid

Receiver-in-the-Canal or Receiver-in-the-Ear Hearing Aids

The receiver-in-canal (RIC) and receiver-in-the-ear (RITE) styles are similar to a behind-the-ear hearing aid with the speaker or receiver that sits in the ear canal. Instead of tubing, however, a tiny wire connects the piece behind the ear to the inner ear receiver.


  • Typically less visible than BTE styles
  • Has directional microphones
  • Has manual control options
  • May be available with rechargeable batteries


  • Is susceptible to earwax clogging the speaker
Open-Fit Hearing Aids An illustrated open-fit hearing aid

Open-Fit Hearing Aids

Open Fit Hearing Aids are similar to behind-the-ear and receiver-in-the-ear styles in that the receiver is tucked behind the ear and the speaker, connected by a wire, fits inside the ear canal. The difference is that the speaker in the ear has an open dome, which allows for low-frequency sounds to enter the ear naturally and for high-frequency sounds to be amplified through the hearing aid. This makes Open Fit aids a good choice for those who have good low-frequency hearing but struggle with higher-frequency sounds. 


  • Doesn’t plug the ear, allowing more natural sound to pass through the open dome
  • Makes your own voice sound better to you


  • Often Visible
  • Non-custom dome can make speakers more difficult to insert into ear canals 
  • Not a fit for all types of hearing loss

Which Hearing Aids Work with an iPhone or Other Smartphone?

Most hearing aids are compatible with iPhones and other smartphones. Any hearing aid that has Bluetooth connectivity capabilities can be paired with a smartphone, while there are several apps on the market that can give you even more control over your hearing aids. In addition, certain hearing aid brands are developed to work directly with iPhones and smartphones. These hearing aids can bypass the apps and give the user the ability to make true “hands-free” phone calls, as well as enjoy stereo streaming of music and TV shows. These direct connection hearing aids also do not require a separate Bluetooth device to connect with your phone, which is a requirement for some other models. Come on in and we’ll demonstrate the technology to you.

man uses a mobile phone on the go
Grandfather and Grandson Fishing At Sunset in Summer

Are Hearing Aids Waterproof?

No, however there are hearing aids that are water resistant. That means that while you can’t leave your hearing aids in when you go swimming, you don’t have to worry too much if you forget to take them out in the shower or get caught in a rain storm. Keep in mind though that all hearing aids work the best under optimal conditions, which is when they’re clean and dry. Excessive water or moisture can cause damage to the electronic components inside of the hearing aids and also cause bacteria to grow on the outside, which can lead to health problems. There are a few steps you can take to keep your hearing aids dry and clean after they’ve been exposed to water, such as using a dehumidifier to remove moisture and storing your hearing aids in a dry place at night.