Hearing aids amplify the sounds of speech that are missing due to the hearing loss. Hearing speech is important to producing clear speech. Researchers are trying to better understand how problems develop, how they can be prevented and how best to help people who are suffering from hearing loss. A major obstacle for many, however, is that insurance often doesn’t cover treatments or devices that improve hearing.
Function of hearing aids
Regardless of the appearance of hearing aids for kids and teens, all hearing aids have certain characteristics in common. They are made to selectively increase the volume of the sounds your child wants to hear. So they can make soft sounds audible, while at the same time making moderate or loud sounds comfortable. No hearing aid can solve every hearing problem or restore normal hearing, but they are designed to provide amplification so that your child can hear and understand better. Hearing aids made for children stress safety and durability. Battery doors are tamperproof, so curious little fingers can’t open the hearing aids. We know that kids and teens are active, enjoy sports, and play outside in all kinds of weather. Advanced nanotech coatings protect the hearing aids from dirt, sweat, and even rain PLUS they are so colorful that kids want to show them off.
Hearing aids are often able to be re-cased in a more adult color or a discreet tone to blend with hair or skin. Behind-the-ear (BTE) aids may have bulky tubing and ear molds that fill up the ear. If appropriate, your audiologist may be able to order new ear molds that blend with skin tone and fill up less of the outer ear or switch to a slim tube fitting.
Some hearing aids are available with an integrated FM receiver option and these may be fitted in partnership with the local authority. The local authority then funds the transmitter part of the radio aid system. In areas that provide integrated FM receivers it is important to check local procedures and responsibilities for replacement or repair of faulty equipment.
Before for hearing instruments for kids & teens
kids and teenagers with hearing loss must have a medical evaluation by a licensed physician before being fitted with hearing instruments. Hearing aids are battery powered, electronic devices with microphones that amplify sound in the ear. Pediatric hearing aids come in a wide range of bright colors, so children can regain control over their hearing in style. Most children are fitted with Behind-the-Ear (BTE) models that are easy to use, while teens may choose a more discreet In-the-Ear (ITE) option.
If a child has hearing loss, getting fitted for hearing aids as soon as possible means he or she will be able to learn and grow.
ITE(in-the-ear) AND BTE(behind-the-ear) MODELS
Generally, behind-the-ear (BTE) digital hearing aids are the standard issue NHS (national health service) hearing aid although there are a few health authorities who do provide in-the-ear (ITE) so the model your child is offered depends on where you live. ITE aids are more expensive to buy and upkeep than BTE models.
However, even if they are available they might not be suitable for your child for the following reasons.
- ITE hearing aids may not be suitable until a child reaches their teenage years as the ear canal needs to be large enough to take all the hearing aid’s internal parts.
- ITE hearing aids are not suitable for young children as they require very frequent refitting and replacement as the child grows (or as often as they have regular ear molds re-made). This means that the child is without hearing aids on a regular basis or requires a second set of BTE hearing aids.
If your child is struggling to hear there are many hearing solutions designed specifically for children. Early intervention is crucial to meet learning goals. Delaying even a few months can have a major impact on your child’s social and language development since the brain of a child is rapidly changing and developing. If someone you know has been suffering from hearing loss, you should consult a physician to get tested for hearing loss.