The behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aids are a practical solution for people with many levels of hearing loss. A BTE hearing aid has one part that fits behind the ear attached to an ear mold by clear plastic tubing.

The part that fits behind the ear holds the hearing aid components. The amplified sound is delivered to the ear canal by the clear tubing to the ear mold.

BTE hearing aids are the largest model of hearing aids. Due to their size, these hearing aids can be more powerful than smaller models. This allows the BTE model to be suitable for more severe hearing loss than some smaller models of hearing aids.

A BTE hearing aid is often easier to adjust than models that fit into the ear canal. The adjustments care made to the piece fitting behind the ear instead of tiny controls on a smaller hearing aid in the ear canal.

The fact that the hearing aid components are held in the part that fits behind the ear and not blocking the ear canal can make for a more comfortable listening experience for many hearing aid users. Since the components do not obstruct the ear canal, the user may not have as much of a sense of occlusion.

Occlusion is feeling as if sound is being heard within an enclosed space. It is often described as hearing in a barrel. One type of BTE hearing aid known as an open-fit hearing aid further reduces occlusion by having an open ear mold.

BTE hearing aids are easy to maintain. The disadvantage to this hearing aid model is that they may be more difficult to conceal than completely-in-canal (CIC) or other tiny hearing aid models.

To overcome this disadvantage, many hearing aid companies make BTE hearing aids in a variety of colors to match hair and skin colors. This helps make the hearing aids a little less noticeable.

The increased size of behind-the-ear hearing aids allows some special features and hearing aid accessories that might not be available for smaller models. A hearing aid user should discuss their hearing aid options with their hearing professional or audiologist.

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