Open and Receiver In Canal Hearing Aids: Open/RIC
The open revolution has made wearing a digital hearing aid more comfortable for many people. These devices look similar to a BTE aid, however, there is one crucial difference: the ear mould is replaced with an open dome that does not block or occlude the ear canal.A recent development of the open style is RIC where the receiver, the speaker, is situated in the ear canal. These hearing aids are also highly cosmetic, often being much less visible than a custom aid.The sound of the hearing aid is arguably smoother than that of a traditional BTE hearing aid. With a RIC hearing aid, the receiver is right in the ear canal and the amplified output of the hearing aid does not need to be pushed through an acoustic tube to the ear mould and therefore has less distortion.RIC hearing aids can typically be made with a very small case behind-the-ear and the wire connecting the hearing aid, and the receiver is extremely inconspicuous. RIC devices are suited to “open fit” technology so they can be fitted without plugging up the ear, offering relief from occlusion.