With the invention of behind-the-ear hearing aids and what are referred to as bubble tips or domes, an entirely new generation of instruments began to evolve. No longer were you forced to endure a big hunk of plastic in the middle of your ear and no longer did you get that ‘stuffy’ feeling similar to what you experience if you cup your hand over your ear and try to talk.
For the hearing aid dispenser, these proved to be a boon as well. Now, a patient (or client, as hearing aid dealers refer to people) could be fitted with a narrow selection of plastic tip sizes. No longer was skill required to take a mold of one’s ear and hope that when it was made, it didn’t hurt. It was great – and a lot faster too!
However, what we and a number of other good audiologists soon came to realize was one size didn’t fit everyone:
- Some people couldn’t find bubble tips that fit well or were comfortable
- Sometimes a bubble tip would come out of the ear with possible loss of the hearing aid
- Certain hearing losses really need to have the ear closed off to have a consistent hearing experience
As a result, ear molds made of clear, soft and comfortable material designed to hold the tip in the optimum location yet remain barely visible was developed. Our experience over several years has shown that patients have significantly better results when ear molds are used. Not everyone needs them but for those who do, it’s almost a must. Without an ear mold, you may be fiddling to keep that bubble tip in the right place.
This is something we feel strongly about. If you buy your hearing aid(s) at someplace that doesn’t even mention such things, it may be because they don’t have the technical expertise to take a good impression of your ear canal. Or, sadly, it may be because they don’t want to spend the extra time that it takes to give you the maximum benefit from your device. We do! The small additional cost of an ear mold will prove to be greatly beneficial in your future hearing – and you’ll never know how much less benefit you might have had without it.
We’ll talk more about this with you if it’s something that you should have.