If you have hearing aids, you should be capable of hearing, right? When your hearing aid stops doing its job, it can be seriously frustrating. The good news is, with regular upkeep, your hearing aids should continue to function efficiently.
Before you do anything drastic, look at this list. It may be time to come in and see us if you find it isn’t one of these common problems. Your hearing might have changed, for example, or you might need a hearing aid recalibration.
Potential Pitfall: Low Batteries
While hearing aid batteries have gotten dramatically smaller and lifespans are improving, the batteries still need to be replaced occasionally or recharged. That means that it’s essential to keep up with your hearing aids’ batteries. The first thing you need to do if your hearing aid begins to falter or cut in and out is check the battery.
The fix: Keep ‘em Fresh
Purchasing a battery tester, particularly if you like to stock up, is a practical idea. Batteries have a shelf life so the last batteries in the pack may not have the same voltage as the first few even if you keep them sealed. Another trick: When you open new batteries, wait 5 minutes before putting them in. This gives the zinc time to become active, and can potentially extend the life of the batteries.
Potential Pitfall: Gross Things Like Wax And Grime
Regardless of how clean you keep your ears, and if you have a tough time hearing, you’re much more likely than the average individual to stay on top of earwax, your hearing aids are going to collect dirt and debris. If you can hear but sounds seem distorted or a bit off, dirt may be the cause.
The fix: Clean ‘em Out—And Keep Them Clean!
You can buy a kit for keeping your hearing aids clean or you can use items you already have around the house to keep them clean. You can use a microfiber cloth, like the kind you use to clean your computer screen or cellphone, to wipe your hearing aid down after taking it apart.
You can help stop your hearing aids from gathering excess filth by practicing basic hygiene habits. Wash and dry your hands before you take care of your hearing aids, and remove them while you’re doing things, such as washing up, styling your hair, or even shaving, that might put them in jeopardy of being spritzed, sprayed, or splattered.
Potential Pitfall: Trapped Moisture
Even a little bit of moisture can really damage your hearing aid (think working up a sweat, not snorkeling). The vent in the hearing aid and the battery can even be effected by humidity in the air. Issues ranging from distortion to static or even crackling might happen depending on how much moisture has gotten in. They may even appear to quit altogether.
The fix: Keep ‘em Dry
Make sure that when you store your hearing aids, you open the battery door; and if you’re storing them for longer than 24 hours, take out the batteries entirely. Any trapped moisture will be able to evaporate and air will be able to circulate with almost no effort on your part.
Store hearing aids in a cool, dry spot. Don’t store them in the kitchen or bathroom. Keeping them in the bathroom might seem convenient but there’s just too much moisture. If you live in a humid climate, you may want to think about getting a hearing aid storage box. Most versions use a desiccant in the form of a little moisture absorbing packet, but some more expensive versions get rid of moisture with electronics.
None of these are working out? It might be time to consult us.