Lyrics hearing aid is pretty unique. It is the most invisible hearing aid out there, and in case you want to get one, there are some things to consider.
If you need to wear a hearing aid, a typical concern is that you don’t want anyone to see it. Most patients really want an invisible device. Well, Lyrics hearing aid address this need more than any other hearing aid.
Illustration of the Lyrics location.
The concept is very simple. It is a hearing device that the audiologist inserts deep into your ear canal, and leave it there for a few months. Later on, you go back to the clinic, and they replace it. This happens again and again, every few months. In between visits to the clinic, you don’t do anything with it. You just live your life with the device deep in your ear.
Therefore, it is really a device that you wear and forget. No daily maintenance, no battery change and no need to take it in and out. Only the audiologist can access it and replace it. You can sleep, take a shower and exercise with it. Every 2-3 month, you just go to the audiologist who takes it out and puts a new one.
By the way - due to the nature of using it, you usually buy a year of this service, not the device itself. This is needed since you have to get a new device every few months and you can’t do it on your own, you have to go back to the clinic for that.
In addition of being totally invisible, the Lyrics got few more pros:
- Because it is inserted deep into the ear canal (only a few mm from the tympanic membrane), there are no feedback issues and no wind noise. At least no more than what a normal hearing person has to deal with.
- Reduce occlusion effect. Yes, it seem like a paradox because it seals the canal. But because it is so deep, the occlusion effect is less than In-The-Canal devices.
- You can speak with a regular phone using Lyrics hearing aid.
- It is an analog device with one channel, which means the sound is very natural. Since it is inserted so deep in your ear, you do not need many of the digital features. Lots of the sophisticated features that you get on advanced digital hearing aids aren’t necessary. There is no feedback to cancel, no noise to reduce, no wind cancellation/reduction etc.
- There is no directional system. Same as in ITC devices, there is only one microphone inside the canal as opposed to two microphones. Since it is so deep, the natural directionality of the ear is good enough for this device.
So why don’t everybody use it? Well, its uniqueness also has cons…
- Single channel - There are hearing loss patterns that this device can’t cover. Because it is a single channel device, it is not suitable for people who have a high tone loss with a steep slope for instance.
If you have a big difference between two close frequencies on the audiogram, you need a digital device with more than one channel.
- It’s a sensitive device - if you have a tendency to infections in your ear, it’s not for you. A massive ear wax production might also be a constraint.
- You have to have a complete tympanic membrane. In simple words, it means that the Lyrics hearing aid is not for you if you have perforation or ventilation tubes. Your ear anatomy must be perfect.
- Water resistant, not waterproof. If you swim a lot, it’s not for you. You can’t take it out, and the device is only water resistant, not waterproof, so it can’t handle being submerged for long.
- It doesn’t cover severe and deep hearing loss. It is simply not strong enough.
You might be a candidate if the following assumptions are somewhat correct for you:
- You have a mild to moderate hearing loss, without a steep audiogram.
- You want to put the hearing aid in your ear and forget all about it (at least for 2-3 months).
- You have a normal ear anatomy with no infection and massive ear wax.
- You don’t want or can’t deal with battery change.
- You don’t swim on a daily basis (or dive…).
- You’re not intimidated by the concept of something being deep into your ear 24/7. Like mentioned above - You can’t take it out on your own, you need an audiologist for that.
The Lyrics hearing aid is definitely a unique, and super invisible device, but it’s not for everybody. If you think you qualify, based on the info here, have a word with your audiologist.
...And a link to Lyrics hearing aid website. It is unique enough so Phonak built its own website...