Newbie questions - bluetooth and type


Just in the process of shopping for a hearing aid for my moderate high-frequency hearing loss. Am I the only person who does not really want things like Bluetooth? I mean it is an RF signal that is basically bombarding my brain with microwaves, albeit low power ones. It seems like many of the new aids have some sort of wireless connectivity - I need convincing that this is necessary and worthwhile.

My other question is about behind-the-ear vs. in the ear/in the canal - my audiologist says that folks with near-normal hearing in some ranges like me are usually not happy with the in the ear types because it is like wearing an ear plug and it blocks some of your natural hearing - If you went with in the ear aids has this been your experience?





I am 72 and I have been dealing with RF, and microwave since I was 21, and I have never been in the hospital or had and illness other than a cold or flu. I have been wearing aids for 15 years and all but my first 4 years have had some type of connectivity package, if I hadn’t had the connectivity I would not have been able to work.
So what I am saying is that you do what you wish but the issues that you are reading and hearing are nothing but scare tactics.



Bluetooth is a bidirectional protocol, so there is transmitting going on at your head. I don’t blame you for wanting to be careful about this. I don’t worry, myself, but I can’t say with any certainty that it’s 100% safe. (Maybe 99%, but…)

Anyway, very few of the available HA’s have Bluetooth. Most have receive-only protocols, which doesn’t bathe your head in any more waves than what you’d get without the HA’s. Telecoil is one. From what I can surmise, Phonak’s “Roger” protocol is receive-only at the HA, because it’s a one-to-unlimited transmission system from the microphone or hub.

Check out the wireless capabilities of a given brand and type of HA. If it has one-to-one wireless protocols, chances are that it’s two-way and the HA does some transmitting. If it has one-to-many (with the “many” being many HA’s), chances are it’s a receive-only protocol at the HA.

Also, true “pairing” requires a two-way protocol, but activation-type pairing like with my Phonak TV Connector I suspect is a one-way.



I recently got new RITE aids and I’ve been discussing open domes vs. custom molds and closed domes. My hearing is similar to yours in that I’ve lost mostly high frequency. After trying custom molds (which probably have a similar feel to in-the-ear) I have gone back to open domes. I tried the custom molds for a few days and while I can see they have advantages, I was not getting used to the feeling of having an ear plug. I was told I’d get used to it but in the first four days it was just worse each day. I went back to open domes and it was like, “Ahhh…” I have an appointment next month to further discuss this with my audiologist and perhaps readjust the aids for open domes as opposed to custom molds.

I’m sure there are many discussions about this elsewhere and perhaps someone can link to some of the most enlightening threads.



Thank you for your replies. I appreciate the information and the open exchange of ideas.