Real Size of CIC Hearing Aids?

I’ve worn hearing aids almost all my life, and lately I’ve been in the market for some Completely In the Canal (CIC) hearing aids. My audiologist recommended Unitron Yuu because she said it’s the only CIC with enough power in case my hearing gets worse in the next few years (although my hearing loss has been level the last 10 years).

When the first trial pair came in, they were rather larger than I expected based on the marketing material I had seen and read. Also, the name “Completely In the Canal” suggests something that really goes into your ear.

Left Ear:

Right Ear:

I tried them for a week and a half, then had them sent back in to see if they could make them smaller (and get rid of the blue & red colors). They came back this week, and while they were a little smaller, they still don’t seem quite what I was expecting. They still seem more like ITC aids.

Left Ear:

Right Ear:

I was wondering what experience anyone here has with CICs, and with their real size, and regarding how small they can or cannot be.

Is it just this company, Unitron, whose CICs are big? Or are the marketing photographs just that: marketing, with no relation to reality? Or perhaps I have small ears?

I want to know what the reality is, and whether I should try some other brand or just accept what I have. To get an idea of the photos I’ve seen, just do a Google image search on “cic hearing aids”.

And here are a few descriptions from the web:

“CIC hearing aids are designed to fit entirely in the ear canal and as such are completely unnoticeable. They are among the smallest hearing aids available on the market today.”
http://www.hearing-aids-guide.com/cic-hearing-aids.htm

“The smallest hearing aid that is almost invisible in the ear.”
http://www.thehearingcompany.co.uk/CIC-hearing-aids.html
“This is the smallest type of hearing aid made and is almost invisible in the ear. All the components are housed in a small case that fits far into the ear canal.”
http://www.ahaanet.com/hearingaidstyles.asp

Nice post…photos and all. :slight_smile:

I had the exact same experience with my CIC’s from GN/Resound. Not really a HA problem, but just the fact that you and I have small ear canals. Not much you can do about that for CIC’s.

From the pictures, it looks like your HA’s have a control on them? Mine don’t have any controls, so they are very slightly smaller, but not much. The battery door and mic are the only visible components on the ends.

We need to grow bigger ears, or wait for batteries to get smaller. The size 10 battery is really what is forcing the size limitation.

Yes I agree they look too big and appear more like Mini Canal size. It can depend on the canal size tho…if all the parts can’t be fitted all the way in the canal they will build some into the concha bowl.

Also the program switch you have will make the hearing aid bigger.

Starkey have a power CIC (Destiny 1600) that is as powerful if not more so than the Unitron counterpart and I’d encourage you to look al that.

Also. Widex are renowned for making very small CICs…I don’t think they have a power option tho?

PS I agree…your pics are great.

I have Widex SensoPlus and currently testing Widex Mind, both CIC. They are smaller then yours (~1.5 cm) and not visible unless you look straight into the ear. Mind is a bit wider because it has 2 processors. If you ear canals are really too small for CIC you may try in-canal. They might be cheaper and look the same in your ears as your current CICs? By the way even Mind is bordering my hearing loss, so I probably need to take a look at another brand. Want to continue w/CIC as long as possible. Has anyone had another ‘power’ CIC brand? What’s your experience?

Alicja,

I also have a Widex Senso CIC (10 years old) and am about to test the Widex Mind CIC, beginning tomorrow. I only have hearing loss in my left ear, but it is nearly identical to the loss you’ve posted for your left ear. The specs for the Widex Mind CIC show that our loss is barely within the fitting range for the Mind CIC. What did you finally decide? I’m also going to try a Widex Mind BTE model with more power (Mind440 m4-9) to compare the clarity of speech and to see whether the directional microphones improve my ability to hear conversation in noisy environments (e.g., restaurants and parties). My ability to discriminate with my left ear is only about 75 %, so I need all the help I can get to hear words clearly.

According to what I’ve read, we should be looking for aids for which our loss fits well within the fitting range. I’m told that getting hearing aids operating near the top of their power is like getting 50-watt stereo speakers and turning up the volume to 45 or 50 watts all the time. The speakers can handle it, but the quality at that volume won’t be as good as the quality at that same volume with 75-watt speakers. Makes sense to me.

-Bob

The pictures show “normal size” CICs.

Many advertisements show CICs without a “concha lock” and mine always came with the concha lock. I think the ads are somewhat deceiving because most CICs extend a touch beyond the canal.

The program button in the picture, I assume it’s a program button, might require a bit of additional length also.

I wore CICs for 12 years before switching to BTEs a couple years ago. I could never go back. The BTEs offer many more features, are more comfortable, and have far fewer problems than CICs.

Wow, talk about Deja vu. In 2002, when I got fitted for hearing aids, I wanted CIC because I thought they would be hard to see. When i went in to pick them up, i had the same sentiment as you did…wow, these are noticeable. I wasn’t very pleased, to say the least. Not to mention, they often became plugged up, requiring a trip to the audiologist, and in the 6 years I had to send them back 2 or 3 times for servicing because they quit working. On the plus side, they were very good on the phone.

They served me well for 6 years, but recently (after a horrendous experience with Lyric), went with BTE Oticon Duals. I got the grey color, with the RITE. These are WAY less obtrusive than the CIC. You literally cannot see them unless you are looking for them. The tubes follow the shape of your ear and are invisible. The actual hearing aid is covered by hair and un-noticable. With the addition of the Streamer, cell phone calls are great and I am one happy customer. Try them, you will like it!

That only works if you have hair to cover them :smiley:

But I agree, my Siemens BTE Pures are also more invisible than my CIC’s even though they did fit me properly. The wire going from the small case, which is hidden on top of and behind the ear, follows the crease of your ear and does not show at all. It looks like part of the crease unless you look really really closely. If you get that close, you better be kissing me. :smiley:

Hi Bob,
I’m a happy owner of Widex Mind CIC. They are definitely better than my old Senso Plus. I can hear much better (not perfect) in noisy places. How’s your testing? Others mentioned BTEs, but I don’t think they are good for active people, aren’t they? Don’t you have to be pretty careful with them? I work out, ski, bike. With CICs put them in and forget them…
Alicja

this looks like cics you might have a small ear buddy

This is what my CIC looks like.

Invisible? No.

what is that a sincro cic?
i think starkey are smaller

Tego CIC. Good eye.

just found this info/and similar to what I am experiencing–

so many so labelled CIC are really NOT completely in ear–which was an attraction to get ;em!

I am wondering if you have found the widex mind CIC good?
Do they show much in your ear?

This is not a CIC model.
It is Mini Canal with switch.
CIC models don’t have switch…