Could Invisible Hearing Aids Be Your Very Best Option?

invisible hearing aid - close up of tiny modern hearing aid

If you are suffering from hearing loss, it makes sense to get hearing aids. Rather than struggling to get by and asking people to repeat themselves, you can enjoy the benefits of having your hearing restored to what it used to be.

However, this can bring a problem. Hearing loss is associated with ageing and many people will accept this as a part of getting older in later life, for younger folk who develop hearing impairments, the wearing of a visible aid can bring a sense of embarrassment and stigma.

There are various solutions to this, of course. Some learn to embrace it and live with it, regarding it the same way as wearing glasses. Others, especially women, might grow their hair longer and fuller to hide it.

However, these responses all depend on the assumption that their hearing aids will be very obviously visible, sticking out like a sore thumb and therefore being a constant source of insecurity or even embarrassment.  

What many do not know is what invisible hearing aids could do for them. The fact that these exist at all, let alone being available in different varieties from various makers, is not widely known.

They are not invisible because of some new technology taken from the pages of sci-fi novels or adapted from some advanced military technology; instead, they are located entirely inside the ear canal, with no external parts whatsoever.

If you have one of these fitted, you can keep your need for a hearing aid entirely secret from whoever you wish. The only clue is a tiny, inconspicuous wire leading to the outer ear that enables you to remove the aid when necessary.

What should be noted about these concealed hearing aids is that the reason it is possible to hide them in the ear canal is due to their smaller scale, which does bring some compromises. It means the battery capacity and overall power is less, which does restrict them to those with mild to moderate hearing loss.

The idea of innovative hearing aids that are hard to spot does not stop there, of course. A Bloomberg subscriber-only newsletter has claimed that air pods, currently used as wireless means of listening to music or the radio, could be adapted to act as hearing aids, with an embedded ‘hearing aid’ mode.

According to newsletter writer Mark Gurman, Apple’s new iOS 18 AirPods, due to be released in the autumn of 224, will have this feature.

However, as Yahoo News notes, this sort of claim has been made before and has not yet come to fruition; the Wall Street Journal predicted in 2021 that the 2022 Airpod Pro would include this feature, but it did not, which leaves open the question of whether the idea was in development and after three years of extra work will finally appear later this year.

Clearly Airpods that double as hearing aids would be a novel way of concealing a hearing issue. But you don’t need to wait to see if the speculation that proved wrong in 2021 is right this year to aid your hearing without the world being able to see.