If you have hearing aids, you should be able to hear, right? When they aren’t working right, it can be extremely frustrating, it’s a total “You had ONE job” scenario. Here’s the good news, with regular maintenance, your hearing aids should be up to the job.
Before you do anything drastic, go through this list. It might be time to come in and talk with us if you find it’s not one of these ordinary problems. Your hearing may have changed, for example, or you may need a hearing aid recalibration.
Potential Pitfall: Low Batteries
Hearing aid batteries, while improving in quality, still require recharging and replacing sometimes. So staying on top of charging your batteries is important. The first thing you need to do if your hearing aid starts to fail or cut in and out is check the battery.
The fix: Keep ‘em Fresh
A battery tester is a worthwhile investment, especially if you like to stock up. 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: Wait five minutes after you open new batteries before you put them in your hearing aids. This can help the batteries last longer by allowing the zinc to become active.
Potential Pitfall: Grease, Grime, And Other Gross Stuff
Your hearing aids will accumulate dirt and debris regardless of how clean you keep your ears and if you have trouble hearing you’re most likely more conscientious about earwax. You might find yourself with a dirt problem if sounds seem slightly off or distorted.
The fix: Clean Them Out—And Keep Them Clean!
You can purchase a kit for keeping your hearing aids clean or you can use things you already have around the house to clean them. Once you’ve taken apart your hearing aids, use a soft, microfiber cloth (like you’d use to clean the screen of a computer or smartphone) to wipe down the hardware.
You can help keep your hearing aids from gathering excess filth by practicing basic hygiene practices. Clean and dry your hands before you handle your hearing aids, and take them out while you’re doing anything, such as washing up, styling your hair, or even shaving, that may put them at risk of being spritzed, sprayed, or splattered.
Potential Pitfall: Trapped Moisture
Moisture can be a real problem for hearing aids, and it doesn’t take much to do so (you won’t need to be underwater, even sweating can be an issue). 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 might experience problems from sound distortion to static, to crackling. They may even seem to stop working.
The fix: Keep ‘em 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 overnight, remove the batteries completely. It takes almost zero effort and ensures that air can move, and any trapped moisture can escape.
Store hearing aids in a cool, dry spot. Don’t store them in the kitchen or bathroom. Even though the latter is convenient, the steam from a hot shower is specifically what you don’t want. You will most likely want to purchase a hearing aid storage box if you live in a very humid environment. Pricier models plug in, but less expensive options use desiccants or gels (yes, like those “throw away do not eat” packets you find in the box when you buy a pair of shoes) to absorb moisture.
If you’ve tried all of these and none of them are helping then it may be time for a consultation with us.