A one size fits all option doesn’t exist when it comes to hearing aids. It also doesn’t exist when it comes to how sound from a hearing aid is delivered into your ear. Based on your degree of hearing loss and what you have trouble hearing, your Audiologist will recommend a hearing aid that would be most beneficial for your hearing loss. Her/his hearing aid recommendation may also include an ear mold or dome.
Ear Molds are recommended for those who have trouble hearing all frequencies. They are made from silicone, acrylic, or other materials and are made by taking an impression of your ear. The sound that is delivered from your hearing aid into your ear is prevented from escaping because of the ear mold.
A secure fit with an ear mold is very important but should not cause any pain. If an ear mold does not fit snuggly, sound can escape the ear canal causing a loud feedback squeal and inadequate hearing. After years of wear, an ear mold can shrink or degrade, so annual visits to your Audiologist are recommended. Daily cleaning consists of wiping the earmold with a cloth dampened in peroxide to remove debris, wax, and oil. Other daily cleaning techniques will be discussed with you depending on your type of ear mold.
Domes are made from silicone and come in a variety of sizes and shapes. They are best used with a hearing aid for someone with a mild to moderate loss and for someone who has trouble hearing higher frequencies. Domes allow the sound delivered from your hearing aid to enter the ear, but they also allow natural sounds to enter as well.
A secure fit with a dome should not cause pain. If it does, changing sizes can help. Domes should be cleaned daily with a cloth dampened in peroxide to remove debris, wax, and oil. Daily cleaning can prolong the life of a dome, but once the dome because flimsy and loose on the receiver of the hearing aid, it is time to change to a new one.
To find out if an ear mold or dome is right for you, as well as what hearing aid would be most beneficial to you, just call Lemme Audiology Associates at (814) 941-7770.
Kristin Seiler – Practice Representative