After months (possibly even years) of waiting, you’ve finally decided to contact us to see if you need hearing aids. You have been resisting this like so many others. But the hassle, the lost moments, the missing interactions, they all finally became too much.
So it’s a little frustrating when you’re sitting in the hearing specialist’s office and you find out that you’re going to have 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 known as a hearing aid dome instead.
What are hearing aid domes?
Doesn’t that sound kind of epic? Like hearing aids fighting in some kind of ancient mythological arena. Only one hearing aid can emerge victorious from the hearing aid dome.
Well, it’s a little less thrilling than that. They are pretty cool though. Hearing aid domes are like little earbuds that you can place at the end of your hearing aid speaker. Usually made out of silicone or plastic, they attach 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. Here are the two general functions:
- They position the hearing aid speaker (the part that you listen to) in the most effective position inside of your ear canal. And they position the speaker so it won’t jiggle around inside of your ear.
- They can help limit the amount of external sound you hear, particularly when that outside sound can impede the functionality of your hearing aid. Hearing aid domes work to enhance the sound quality and provide an extra bit of control when used correctly.
Domes for hearing aids look kind of like those bulbs at the end of your earbuds. There are several hearing aid dome types, 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 types, each letting in more or less background sound.
Hearing aid dome models include:
With these, more sound is able to pass through little holes in the dome. You get the advantage of amplification while still being able to process external sounds.
As the name indicates, these domes have fewer openings and block more ambient sound than open domes can. For individuals with more profound hearing loss, background noise can be very distracting and this kind of dome can help with that.
Power domes have no holes and totally block outside sounds. With these, almost no external sound can get in. These domes will be ideal for people with extremely severe hearing loss.
How often should you change your hearing aid domes?
For best effect, you should swap out your hearing aid domes every 2-3 months (your ears are not the dirtiest place, but they aren’t the cleanest, either).
Hearing aid domes can typically be used right out of the box. In fact, that’s one of their biggest benefits.
How will I benefit by wearing hearing aid buds?
Hearing aid domes are popular for a wide variety of reasons. The most widespread advantages include the following:
- The external world sounds more clear and natural: By finding the right hearing aid dome type, you can ensure that your hearing aids produce a natural overall sound and improved sound clarity. That’s because some sound will still (likely) get in. Once again, this depends on the style of dome, and we can help you with this.
- Hearing aid domes can be more discrete: Hearing aid domes aren’t that big, particularly when they’re in your ear. In this way, they can be rather discrete.
- You can hear your own voice: A natural level of sound can get through some types of hearing aid domes. So you will still be able to hear your own voice. This makes the clarity of sound seem much more natural, which means you’re likely to use your hearing a great deal more often.
- No fitting time: Not needing to wait is one of the best benefits of hearing aid domes. You can un-box them, pop them on your hearing aid and you’re good to go. This is an ideal solution for individuals who don’t want to wait weeks for custom fit hearing aids. It’s also good for individuals who want to demo their hearing aids before they buy them. With hearing aid domes, patients don’t need to sacrifice sound clarity to get faster results.
And again, this will mean you’re less likely to leave your hearing aid sitting in a drawer.
What are the drawbacks to hearing aid domes?
As with any hearing device or medical treatment, there are some drawbacks and trade-offs to hearing aid domes, trade=offs you’ll want to think about before making a decision. Among the most common are the following:
- They’re not always comfortable: Some individuals are uncomfortable with the feeling of something blocking their ear canal. Hearing specialists call this sensation “occlusion,” and some people can find it extremely unpleasant. In addition, if you take your hearing aid dome out too quickly (or don’t clean it often enough), there’s the chance that it might separate from the tubing and get stuck in your ear canal. If this happens, you’ll most likely need to come see us to get it removed.
- They can occasionally be more prone to feedback: Feedback isn’t necessarily common, but it can happen. This is particularly true for individuals who have high-frequency hearing loss.
- Not suitable for all forms of hearing loss: For instance, if you have profound hearing loss or high frequency hearing loss, hearing aid domes may not be the preferred solution for you. Again, the feedback can become a problem with high frequency hearing loss. For individuals with profound hearing loss, it’s really the hearing aid itself that’s the problem: you’ll require something that’s larger and which has more power than the styles typically associated with hearing aid domes.
Should I use hearing aid domes?
It’s mostly a personal decision whether you use hearing aid domes. It’s your choice but we can help. And we will be able to help you understand all the pros and cons pertaining to your unique hearing health.
For some individuals, it might be worth waiting the extra couple of weeks for a custom-fit device. For other people, the immediate results of hearing aids you can wear today will build healthy, lifelong hearing habits.
You have options and that’s the good thing.