Can I Put in my Hearing Aids When I Have my Glasses on?

Couple wearing hearing aids with glasses enjoy a vacation.

Hearing aids and glasses most likely seem like incompatible opposites, but is there a means to get these two very necessary items to work together? How to wear both is a question that comes up a lot, specifically if you are thinking about behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aids. The question is, can I use them both comfortably? Yes is the answer.

There are a few things, for people who wear glasses, to think about before they purchase new hearing aids, though. Here’s what you need to know about wearing hearing aids and glasses, together.

What Style of Hearing Aids Will Work Best for Your Situation?

There are a lot of things, in general, to look at when getting new hearing aids. Hearing aids come in all styles, shapes, and sizes. You can even get them in cool colors if you like that type of thing. The point is, the time of wearing hearing aids like your grandpa did is over.

Learning exactly what type of hearing aids are available is the way to begin the search. They divide into three basic categories:

  • In-the-ear (ITE) – As the name suggests, this style of hearing aid fits right into the opening of the ear canal with nothing mounted behind the ear.
  • Behind-the-ear (BTE) – This is an older style of hearing aid, but today’s version of this technology is far more advanced. With this model, the main section of the device sits right behind the ear with clear tubing that connects to an earmold sitting in the opening of the ear canal. Open-fit versions are essentially the same setup except without the earmold.
  • In-the-canal (ITC) – This style is very much like the ITE model but it sits deeper into the ear, making them virtually invisible.

If you wear glasses, you can stay away from a lot of problems with ITE and ITC models. Once you choose the physical style, it’s time to compare the features of different hearing aids.

Understanding The Features

When buying, it’s the features that should be your number one concern not the shape of the hearing aid. Hearing aid technology is evolving all the time, so features constantly change. Some common ones to look for include:

  • T-coil – This function allows you to hear better while using a land-line phone. T-coil technology is effective when you are listening to people talk through a speaker like at a bingo game or at the movies.
  • Noise reduction – Filters out background noise by amplifying one channel to enhance speech.
  • Directional microphone – This will help pinpoint the sound you need to hear while you are in a noisy place. For example, if someone is talking to you at a party, you can hear their speech clearly despite the noise around you.

Determining the ideal features to fit your lifestyle is the objective. Then the style of the hearing aid can be chosen.

Can You Even Use BTE Hearing Aids With Glasses?

Glasses and BTE hearing aids can be worn together. If you want them to be comfortable you have to wear both of these important accessories the correct way. Here are some tips:

  • With both hands, and in a forward motion, practice taking off your glasses. Taking them off like this won’t become a habit immediately. The practice will be reinforced every time you knock off your hearing aid.
  • Get in the habit of putting on your glasses first and then your hearing aids. The placement of your glasses arm is more rigid than your hearing aid so it’s harder to adjust. After positioning the hearing aid, look in a mirror to be certain it’s not hanging off your outer ear.
  • Before you make a purchase look closely at the size of the BTE. Even though it’s a little bit bulky, the standard version will still work with glasses. The other alternative is a relatively new style known as mini BTE. Reduced feedback and improved comfort are gained by making the behind the ear part smaller. Either one will work fine with glasses but see which style fits you best.

There are some people that will have to stick to ITE or ITC devices. If you of your glasses frequently, as an example, a BTE device will be a real inconvenience. Children and people with smaller ears tend to have difficulty with this combination, too. Most reputable hearing aid sellers will give a trial period, so schedule an appointment to see what device is best for you. Trying out the different styles is the only way you will know which style works best for your needs.

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