If you’ve got hearing aids, you should be capable of hearing, right? When they aren’t working correctly, it can be downright frustrating, it’s a total “You had ONE job” situation. Here’s the good news, with regular maintenance, your hearing aids should continue to function efficiently.
Consider this list before you do anything hasty. If it’s not one of these ordinary problems, it might be time to schedule an appointment with us to make sure there isn’t a more substantial problem. For example, your hearing aids may need recalibration, or your hearing could have changed.
Potential Pitfall: Low Batteries
While hearing aid batteries have gotten significantly smaller and lifespans are getting better, the batteries still need to be occasionally replaced or recharged. So keeping up with charging your batteries is crucial. If it seems as if the sound is fading or cutting in and out, check your battery first.
The fix: Keep ‘em Fresh
A battery tester is a worthwhile investment, especially if you like to stock up. Even if you keep batteries sealed until you need to use them, always a smart plan, they have a limited shelf life, and so the last batteries in that giant pack you bought months ago most likely won’t maintain a charge as long as the first few did. Another trick: When you open new batteries, wait 5 minutes before installing them. This gives the zinc time to activate, and can possibly help the batteries last longer.
Potential Pitfall: Grease, Grime, And Other Gross Stuff
Regardless of how clean you keep your ears, and if you have a hard time hearing, you’re much more likely than the average individual to stay on top of earwax, your hearing aids will gather debris and dirt. You might find yourself with a dirt issue if sounds seem a little bit off or distorted.
The fix: Clean ‘em Out—And Keep Them Clean!
You can buy a kit for cleaning your hearing aids 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 cellphone or glasses, to wipe your hearing aid down after disassembling it.
Simple hygiene practices will really help with keeping your hearing aids clean. Wash and dry your hands before you take care of your hearing aids, and take them out while you’re doing anything, such as washing up, styling your hair, or even shaving, that might put them in danger 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 impacted by humidity in the air. Depending on how much moisture’s gotten in, you may experience problems from sound distortion to static, to crackling. They may even seem to quit altogether.
The fix: Keep Them Dry
Make sure that when you store your hearing aids, the battery door is open; and if you’re taking them out for longer than 24 hours, remove the batteries completely. It takes almost zero effort and ensures that air can move, and any captured moisture can escape.
Store hearing aids in a cool, dry place. The bedroom is a smart spot, skip the kitchen or bathroom. Although the latter is convenient, the steam from a hot shower is specifically what you don’t want. You will likely want to get a hearing aid storage box if you live in an overly humid climate. Pricier models plug in, but less costly models use desiccants or gels (yes, like those “throw away do not eat” packets you find in the box when you buy shoes) to take in moisture.
If you’ve tried all of these and none of them are helping then it might be time for a consultation with us.