Hearing aid

small sound amplifiers worn in the ear to compensate for hearing loss
A pair of Oticon Spirit Zest digital BTE (Behind the Ear) hearing aids.
In-the-ear aid

A hearing aid is a small electrical machine which fits in or behind a person's ear. The purpose of a hearing aid is to make sounds louder so the person can hear spoken words and other sounds.

The two most common types of modern hearing aids are behind the ear aids and in the ear aids.

Before hearing aids were invented, people used "ear trumpets" also called ear horns.[1][2]

Types of hearing aidsEdit

There are many different types of hearing aids as shown in the "different hearing aids," image on this page. Depending on your lifestyle as well as how much help you need to hear, you will use different hearing aids. An audiologist can help make hearing aids even better suited to you by customising them depending on what you need.

  • In-The-Canal (ITC) - the smallest type of hearing aid, these are made to fit inside of your ear canal and can be used by people with mild to moderate hearing loss
  • In-The-Ear (ITE) - these are slightly larger than the ITC aids and fit inside your outer ears instead of the canal. These can be used by people with mild to severe hearing loss
  • Behind-The-Ear (BTE) - sit behind your ear and connect to a mould placed in your ear through a tube. This type of aid is usually the largest but can be used by almost anyone with hearing loss and has many different functions
Different hearing aids.


  1. Comparison of Hearing Aids Over the 20th Century. Ear & Hearing. 21(6):625-639, December 2000. Bentler, Ruth A.; Duve, and Monica R.
  2. http://www.hearingcenter.com/Questions/Q_ear-horn.html Ear Horn Q&A. Accessed 6 Dec 2007.

Other websitesEdit