Ear moulds for hearing aids

Man with hearing aid

Wearing a hearing aid is not only about improved hearing but also about comfort. Ear moulds play a crucial role in providing a comfortable wearing experience. Ear mould technology has evolved alongside hearing aids.

What is an ear mould?

Ear moulds are commonly included with various styles of hearing aids, available in basic ear mould or dome styles. These moulds serve the same purpose regardless of the hearing aid style. They seal the ear canal and direct amplified sound into the canal, allowing users to hear desired sounds while reducing background noise.

Types of ear moulds

Ear moulds for hearing aids are typically made of plastic or silicone, customised to fit the user's ear size comfortably for extended periods. They often feature small vents to facilitate airflow. While manufacturers offer various styles tailored to different degrees of hearing loss, the two main types are concha and canal moulds.

The appropriate type of mould depends on the user's hearing aid and the degree of hearing loss.

Concha moulds

Concha moulds fit within the bowl of the ear and are commonly used with Behind-the-Ear (BTE) hearing aids.

Canal moulds

Canal moulds provide greater discretion as they fit inside the ear canal.

Suitability for different hearing loss types

Ear moulds are beneficial for various types of hearing loss. Regardless of the type of hearing loss, a hearing aid user is likely to receive an earmold.

The style of the mould may be influenced by the user's hearing loss. For instance, dome-style hearing aids are recommended for individuals with high-frequency hearing loss, while all types of ear moulds can improve sound quality for those with difficulty hearing lower frequencies.

Properly fitted moulds prevent sound leakage and feedback issues, ensuring optimal performance. Moulds are commonly used by people with severe to profound hearing loss, and first-time hearing aid wearers often find dome-style moulds more comfortable due to reduced occlusion.

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Process of getting fitted for ear moulds

Reputable manufacturers require a custom fitting process for their hearing aids, which is why buying them online and having them delivered is not allowed. This process includes a hearing test and a custom fit for the new hearing aid.

During the consultation, you will be shown how to properly insert the hearing aids, and your ears will be measured to create the custom moulded ear plugs for your specific needs.

1. Ear examination

The first step is an examination of your ear. Since everyone's ear is unique, this inspection is necessary. It involves a careful examination of the ear bowl and ear canal.

This part of the process is painless and only takes a few minutes for an experienced professional to complete.

2. Ear impression for custom ear moulds

To prevent common hearing aid problems, the ear moulds in Australia are manufactured to fit the exact size of your ear and canal. Similar to how a dentist takes an impression of your teeth for a mouthguard, hearing aid professionals use a similar process here.

They use a soft material that is applied to your ear. The material is manipulated until a comfortable fit is achieved. Once a successful impression is made, the hearing aid professional sends it to the manufacturer.

The time it takes to receive your custom moulds depends on the brand of hearing aid you chose, ranging from a few days to a few weeks.

How to clean ear moulds

A close up of a doctor crossed arms

Properly cleaning the ear mould of your hearing aid is essential for maintaining its functionality and hygiene. Follow these steps to effectively clean your ear mould:

  • Remove the ear mould from the hearing aid, being careful not to damage the tubing.
  • Wash the mould with warm, soapy water, using a nail brush, pin, or cleaning wire to remove any wax build-up.
  • Rinse the mould thoroughly with clean water, shake off excess water, and let it dry overnight in a warm, dry area (avoiding heat sources).
  • Reattach the ear mould to the hearing aid, ensuring proper alignment.
  • Do not let the hearing aid come into contact with water; clean it separately using a baby wipe and dry cloth, keeping the battery drawer closed.

Common issues and solutions

Improperly fitted or unsuitable moulds can lead to issues with the hearing experience.

The three most common problems are:

  • Muffled voice
  • Excessively loud voice
  • Whistling sound

These can be resolved by modifying the moulds or adjusting the circuit and vents.

Discomfort, falling out of the hearing aid, and retention problems can also be attributed to the mould style or ear canal configuration. It may take time and multiple appointments to achieve the perfect configuration, underscoring the importance of working closely with a hearing healthcare professional.

Conclusions on ears moulds

Ear moulds are vital components of hearing aids. Incorrectly fitted moulds can negatively impact the listening experience, causing users to abandon their hearing aids.

To ensure the best fit and style, it is crucial to collaborate with a hearing aid professional. Seeking assistance from reputable providers, like EarPros, can offer a superior listening experience. Their hearing aid reviews and consultations with licensed professionals can guide users in making informed decisions.

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