Even if you have glasses (the type you put on your face, not the kind you drink out of), you still see your eye doctor once a year, right? Because your eyes change as time passes. Nothing in your body is static, not your eyes and not, it turns out, your ears either. That’s why, just as it is with your eyes, it’s essential to keep getting your ears tested even after you’ve purchased a nice pair of hearing aids.
Many individuals, unfortunately, neglect those annual appointments. Perhaps a visit to their doctor is taking a back seat to enjoying life. Or perhaps, work has been particularly difficult this year. Or perhaps, you’ve just been so satisfied with your hearing aids that you haven’t had a reason to go back in. That’s a good thing, right?
Scheduling a hearing test
Let’s take Daphne as a fictional example. Daphne has been observing some red flags associated with her hearing for a while now. She keeps turning the TV up. When she goes out after work to a noisy restaurant, she has trouble following conversations. And so, she goes in to have her hearing tested (because she’s intelligent and she takes care of herself).
Daphne makes certain to follow all of the steps to manage her hearing impairment: she purchases hearing aids, which are then precisely fitted and calibrated, and then she gets on with her life.
Issue solved? Well, yes and no. Going in for an exam allowed her to catch her hearing loss early and that’s great. But for most individuals with hearing impairment, even a minor one, follow-up care becomes even more significant in the long run. Maintaining regular appointments would be a smart plan for Daphne. However, one study found that only around 33% of senior citizens with hearing aids get routine check-ups so Daphne isn’t by herself.
Why do you need check-ups after you get hearing aids?
Remember when we used the glasses metaphor earlier? Daphne’s hearing won’t become static and stop changing just because she uses hearing aids. Her hearing aids will have to be fine-tuned to counter those changes. Periodic testing helps keep track of any changes in hearing and catch issues early.
And that isn’t even the only reason why it might be a smart idea to keep regular appointments once you get your hearing aids. Here are some of the most important reasons:
- Your fit may change: It’s possible that there will be a shift in the way your hearing aids fit as your ears are always changing. Regular check-ups can help guarantee that your hearing aids continue to fit the way they’re designed to.
- Hearing deterioration: Your hearing could continue to deteriorate even if you use hearing aids. If this deterioration is slow enough, you probably won’t recognize it’s happening without the aid of a hearing screening. Proper alterations to your hearing aids can frequently slow hearing declines.
- Hearing aid calibration: While your overall hearing health may remain stable, small changes in your hearing may produce the need for yearly calibration of your hearing aid. Without this calibration, your hearing aids could slowly become less and less effective.
Dangers and hurdles
The issue is, Daphne may, in her frustration, quit using her hearing aids entirely because they’re not functioning properly. Using hearing aids helps slow hearing loss over time. If you stop using them, not only can your hearing deteriorate faster, you may not detect it right away.
When it comes to attaining efficient performance of your hearing aids, and optimal hearing, routine hearing assessments are vital. Yearly hearing exams or screenings can help you ensure your hearing aids are functioning as they should and that your hearing stays protected.