Over-the-Counter Hearing Aids (OTC)

Important updates regarding Over-the-Counter (OTC) Hearing Aids:

  1. Over-the-counter hearing aids are only meant for those individuals who perceive they have a mild to moderate hearing loss
  2. No hearing evaluation is required
  3. The purchaser must be 18 years old or older
  4. Over-the-counter hearing aids can be sold outside of a medical office
  5. Should not have one ear hearing better than the other (see an audiologist)
  6. Not for those who have a sudden change in hearing (see an audiologist)
  7. Not recommended for those who have tinnitus –  ringing, roaring, noise (see an audiologist)
  8. Not recommended if someone has a history of chemotherapy and/or radiation to the head/neck (see an audiologist)
  9. Not for those who have active drainage from one or both ears (see an audiologist or otolaryngologist)
  10. Not recommended for those who have ear pain or discomfort (see an audiologist)
  11. Not recommended for those who have dizziness (see an audiologist)

For many of our patients, this may be an option, however, for many this may not be a viable solution. Without a thorough audiologic evaluation, any medical conditions will be missed or not monitored appropriately.

Ask your provider if they have vetted the over-the-counter hearing aids.  They may have insights into which ones may be a better option or even if you are a candidate for OTC hearing aids  If you feel like these OTC aids aren’t providing benefit or you are still struggling, see an audiologist. We are here to professionally test and evaluate your hearing and communication difficulties. It is our job to work with patients to find appropriate solutions to reduce listening fatigue, decrease communication issues, and enhance your quality of life.