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What Are RIC Hearing Aids?

RIC hearing aids are a hybrid of behind-the-ear (BTE) and in-the-canal (ITC) devices. 

With a Receiver-in-Canal device, the main component of the hearing aid sits discreetly behind your ear while a thin wire connects it to an inner earpiece that fits inside your ear canal.

The technology allows fo discreet sound delivery since the main body of the hearing aid is housed behind the ear.

RIC hearing aids on middle-aged man

RICs are also known as open-fit hearing aids. This is because they don’t block off or occlude your ear canal as other hearing devices do.

Instead, an open-fit design helps sound pass naturally into your ear. All while providing amplification at the same time.

Receiver-in-Canal vs Traditional Hearing Aids

Traditional hearing aids sport a bulky behind-the-ear design that can make wearers feel self-conscious.

Fortunately, the introduction of receiver-in-canal (RIC) hearing aids has revolutionized the industry and given wearers a more discreet option.

Receiver hearing aids offer more than a low-profile look: they’re powered by highly effective new technology.

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If you’re looking for a smaller, more comfortable hearing aid option, receiver-in-canal hearing aids can be a great choice.

Benefits of RIC Hearing Aids

RIC hearing aids have a few advantages over traditional hearing aids. These include the following:


Receiver hearing aids are much more comfortable than traditional hearing aids. They don’t block off your ear canal and can be worn for long periods of time without discomfort. 


The thin tube that runs into the ear canal is almost invisible from a distance, making these devices less noticeable than traditional hearing aids that block off the entire ear canal. The design is ideal for users who want to maintain a more natural look.

Hearing aid fit RIC good fit + ret guard

Better sound quality

Since RIC hearing aids don’t occlude the ear canal, you get a better listening experience. You’re still able to hear natural sounds around you as well as amplified sounds.

Less feedback

Feedback is one of the most common issues with hearing aids. These hearing aids are designed to reduce feedback and whistling noises that can be present in traditional BTE hearing aids. 

Disadvantages of RIC hearing aids

Despite the powerful technology and low-key design, receiver-style hearing aids still have drawbacks. Consider these factors before choosing this type of hearing aid.

Higher cost

RIC hearing aids tend to be more expensive than traditional BTE hearing aids due to the advanced technology and components used in their design. In the US, prices can range from $1,000 to $3,200.

More maintenance required

The thin tube that goes into your ear canal can easily get clogged with wax or other debris. You’ll need to clean it regularly for optimal performance. 


Easy to lose

Because the devices are lightweight and small, they can easily be misplaced or lost. Users may not realize they’ve lost them until it’s too late. 

Are Receiver-In-Canal Hearing Aids Right For Me?

Reciever-In-Canal hearing aids have a lot going for them, but they’re also not right for everyone. 

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Consider your lifestyle and financial situation before committing to this type of hearing aid technology. If you’re looking for a discreet and comfortable option, RIC hearing aids may be a perfect choice.

Are RIC Hearing Aids Discreet?

RIC hearing aids are certainly more discreet than other types of hearing aids. The body hooks behind the ear while a thin tube runs into the ear canal, making them nearly invisible to those around you unless they look closely. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the cost of Receiver-In-Canal hearing aids?

The cost of Receiver-in-Canal hearing aids varies depending on the features and technology used. In the US, you can find devices that cost around $1,000 to $3,200.

How do you put a RIC hearing aid on?

First, insert the thin tube into your ear canal and then place the main body behind your ear. Read the instructions that come with your device for more detailed information.

Do RIC hearing aids work better than CIC hearing aids?

The difference between RIC and CIC hearing aids is that the latter blocks or occludes the ear canal. If you want to be able to hear natural sound while still getting amplification, then RIC hearing aids are a better option.