In-the-ear hearing aids (ITE)

ITE hearing aids — the personal, comfortable and customized choice

The ITE hearing aids are custom-made to your exact ear anatomy and are simply placed within your outer ear and ear canal. There are four main types of ITE hearing aids, which are:

ITE hearing aids are often used by those with slight to moderate hearing loss. Although the biggest of all ITE hearing aids, the full/half shell ITE is also suitable for those with severe hearing loss.

To create your ITE custom hearing aid, your hearing care specialist will make an impression or mold, of your ear. This mold will be used to build your ITE hearing aid specifically to your ear shape and size. The ITE hearing aids are comfortable to wear and tailored to your hearing requirements and lifestyle needs.

Drawing of an ear with a Philips HearLink in-the-ear hearing aid showing the exact positioning

How do ITE hearing aids work?

Like all hearing aids, the ITE hearing aids have five core components. They are:

  • one or two microphones
  • an amplifier (makes sound louder)
  • a microchip (also known as the signal processor)
  • a loudspeaker (also known as a receiver)
  • a battery.

The ITE hearing aids gather sounds from the world around you. The microphone picks up sound and converts the waves into electrical signals. The sound is processed depending on your environment and the degree of your hearing loss. The signal is then sent to the amplifier, which strengthens the signal’s power. The amplified signal is then sent to the loudspeaker, which allows you to hear the sound.

Advantages of an ITE hearing aid

The in-the-ear hearing aids can help make sounds audible so you can communicate better and participate more fully in daily life. The ITE hearing aid is different from other styles because it provides the benefit of the amplified sound encased in the customized shell of the ITE hearing aid.

This hearing solution offers ease of handling while providing the sound you need. There are many more advantages to choosing an ITE hearing aid; these include:

  • It is custom-made for your ear. Your hearing care specialist takes a mold of your ear to order the hearing aid built specifically for your ear. Except for the IIC model, the ITE hearing aids are available in colors to blend with your skin tone.
  • The user does not wear anything behind the ear; with the ITE hearing aids, you simply insert the hearing aid into the ear. It is easy to insert and easy to handle.
  • It is convenient for users who wear glasses.
  • The larger ITE hearing aids use larger batteries which offers power for longer.

Variation of the ITE hearing aid style

Hearing aids help to improve your ability to hear by processing the sounds around you and making them easier to hear. To get the most out of your hearing aid, it is important to select the one that is right for you. Finding the right hearing aid depends on several factors. These could be:

  • type and degree of hearing loss
  • desired features
  • ear anatomy
  • specific lifestyle needs
  • budget
  • cosmetic appeal.

If you are interested in ITE hearing aids, there are several different styles to choose from.

Invisible-in-canal (IIC) hearing aids

Philips HearLink invisible-in-canal (IIC) in-the-ear hearing aid

The IIC hearing aid is a type of ITE hearing aid that offers maximum discreetness. These small hearing aids are suitable for those with slight to moderately severe hearing loss and are an excellent choice if you lead a moderately or heavily active lifestyle. They are placed deep in your ear canal, thus providing little distraction as you go about your daily life. A removal line assists with taking out the hearing aid at the end of the day.

Here you can read more about the IIC hearing aid and get an insight into the technology that powers it.

Completely-in-canal (CIC) hearing aids

Philips HearLink completely-in-canal in-the-ear hearing aid (CIC)

The completely-in-canal hearing aid is worn entirely in the ear canal for those experiencing slight to moderately severe hearing losses. This lightweight type of ITE hearing aid is perfect for an active lifestyle and typically comes with a removal line to help with removal from your ear. With a range of features, this hearing aid provides a barely visible role in improving your hearing capabilities.

Go check out the article about the CIC hearing aid for further information.

In-the-canal (ITC) hearing aids

Philips HearLink in-the-canal in-the-ear hearing aid (ITC)

The in-the-canal hearing aid is an ITE hearing aid style that is placed within the ear canal and is partially visible as it sits slightly further out. You can choose from a range of flesh-toned casings to help make it less noticeable. It is suitable for those with slight to severe hearing loss, and due to its slightly larger size, it can fit more features. The ITC hearing aid has a range of options for individualization, creating a custom-built aid for your needs and lifestyle.

Read more about the ITC hearing aid.

Full/half shell in-the-ear hearing aids

The largest custom hearing aid style is called in-the-ear (ITE). An ITE hearing aid is usually custom-made in two styles.

The largest ITE hearing aid styles include the full shell in-the-ear hearing aid and the half shell in-the-ear hearing aid. The full shell hearing aid fills most of the concha, or the bowl-shaped area just outside the opening of the ear canal. The half shell hearing aid fills approximately half of the concha space. Both are suitable for those with slight to severe hearing losses. They are larger in size than the other ITE hearing aids but offer more opportunities for full features like volume control and directional microphones (two microphones instead of one to help when listening in noise).

Find the right ITE hearing aid for you

Finding the right type and style of hearing aid for you can depend on many factors. It could be the degree of hearing loss you have, your lifestyle preferences, or cosmetic concerns. Learn more about Philips HearLink hearing aids.


ITE style hearing aids are currently not available in North America, please contact us if you need additional information
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