A hearing aid is a device worn on the ear that amplifies sound. There are basically two types of hearing aids, air conduction hearing aids and bone conduction hearings with several styles in each type.
A hearing aid is chosen and designed to amplify sound based upon your child’s hearing loss by your Audiologist. The hearing aid provides the greatest amplification at the frequencies (pitches) where your child has the most hearing loss and the least amplification at the frequencies where your child has the least hearing loss. Your child’s hearing aid will be carefully adjusted to keep loud sounds within your child’s comfortable listening range. Hearing aids do not make hearing normal again, but they can help make speech sound clearer and easier to hear.Air Conduction Hearing AidsBone Conduction Hearing Aids
Air Conduction Hearing AidsAir conduction hearing aids amplify sounds and present the louder sounds through the ear canal and middle ear to the nerve of hearing.
Younger children are usually fit with behind-the-ear hearing aids (see below). Behind-the-ear hearing aids can be used with a personal FM system to help children hear the teacher in the classroom. When children get older and are no longer growing quickly, they can sometimes switch to in-the-ear hearing aids.The dispensing audiologist will provide you with step-by-step instructions in the use and care of the hearing aid. Hearing aids for children are often programmed to reduce the need for changing of many of the settings.Click here to download our pamphlet on air conduction hearing aids(pdf).Bone Conduction Hearing AidsThere are several types of bone conduction hearing aids. They are typically recommended for children who have conductive hearing loss, where sound doesn't reach the nerve properly most often because of a malformed outer or middle ear. Bone conduction hearing aids rest on the skull and are held in place by either a soft headband, a hard plastic headband or in older children attached to an implanted fixture in the skull.There are several types of bone conduction hearing aids. They are typically recommended for children who have conductive hearing loss, where sound doesn't reach the nerve properly most often because of a malformed outer or middle ear. Softband Headband Bone Conduction Hearing Aid
The hearing aid is held in place by a soft headband. It is important that the headband provide a firm contact between the skull and the hearing aid. Several companies make and sell headbands, speak to your Audiologist about which one is best for your child. Hard Plastic Headband Bone Conduction Hearing AidThe hearing aid is held in place by a hard plastic headband. These are typically used when the amount of amplification needed cannot be provided with a softband. Speak to your Audiologist about which style of headband is best for your child.Bone Anchored Hearing Systems (BAHS)
A BAHS sends sound directly from the microphone into the inner ear by vibrating through the skull. The difference between an anchored aid and a headband aid is that with a BAHS, the sound is delivered more directly to the inner ear through a fixture in the skull, rather than resting on the skull with a headband. It should improve what your child hears without the need for a headband. The bone anchored aid is attached to a post that is implanted in the skull, these are called bone – anchored hearing systems (BAHS). These are not implanted until the child is approximately 5 years old.
Download the Bone Anchored Hearing Systems pamphlet (PDF)Download the BAHS Family Pathway pamphlet (PDF).
Choose your child's BAHS hearing aid (PDF).Cochlear Implants should be considered if hearing aids are of limited benefit.