Bone conduction hearing devices bypass the middle and outer ear by using sound vibrations passed through your bone instead. If you have single-sided hearing loss or issues with your middle or outer ear, then this solution may be a good fit for you. At Associated Hearing Professionals, we can conduct a comprehensive hearing exam to determine if you are a good candidate for this type of device. Learn more about how they work and the benefits they offer users.
How Do Bone Conduction Hearing Devices Work?
Bone conduction hearing aids pick up sound waves just like a conventional hearing device. However, instead of transferring the sound through your ear canal, the device uses your skull bone as a conductor to transfer the sound waves directly through your bone to your inner ear. This can produce a crisp, clear sound that bypasses your middle and outer ear entirely. Patients may choose non-surgical or surgical solutions using bone conduction.
- Non-surgical: The non-surgical device is connected using a headband, and it is best suited for adults with relatively mild hearing loss or young children who are not yet eligible for surgery.
- Surgical: This is usually the preferred long-term solution and involves a titanium post that is implanted into the bone behind the ear and connected to the external sound processor. The internal component is attached through an outpatient surgery under general anesthesia.
Am I Eligible for a Bone Conduction Hearing Aid?
An implanted bone conduction hearing device may be a good fit for many different types of patients. When we conduct your hearing exam, we will determine your level of hearing loss and root causes to see if this device is a good fit for you. The following are some of the factors that determine if you would be a good candidate:
- You suffer from conductive hearing loss, which means that your outer/middle ear is unable to transfer sound
- You have profound hearing loss in one ear that would benefit from the implant
- You have a combination of conductive and sensorineural hearing loss, which is caused by damage to the inner ear
- You have a malformed external ear or skin condition that is not a good fit for traditional hearing devices
Advantages of Implantable Devices
The decision to undergo surgery is a big one that should be carefully considered. As with any surgery, there are risks to consider. Patients could experience swelling, soreness, and infection at the implant site, and some have reported new bone growth around the implant. However, there are also many benefits to choosing this solution, such as the following:
- The device requires less amplification for conductive hearing loss, which results in less feedback for the user
- Unlike larger conventional hearing devices, it is small and nearly undetectable
- The ear canal is kept clear, helping to reduce discharge buildup and risk for infections
- The sound processor can be easily turned off for daily activities like showering and sleeping
If you think you may be a good candidate for a bone conduction hearing device, please contact Associated Hearing Professionals today to speak with our team. Our audiologists and support staff can answer all your questions and help you weigh the pros and cons of this solution to choose the right hearing aid for you. We know that hearing loss can be stressful, and we are here to help make this process as easy as possible for you and your family. Contact us today to schedule an appointment at our Chesterfield or St. Louis office.