Your hearing aids should improve your hearing right? When they aren’t working right, it can be thoroughly infuriating, it’s a total “You had ONE job” scenario. The good news is, with regular upkeep, your hearing aids should continue to function efficiently.
Before you do anything drastic, go through this list. If it’s not one of these common issues, it might be time to pay us a visit to ensure there isn’t a larger issue. Your hearing might have changed, for instance, or you may need a hearing aid recalibration.
Potential Pitfall: Low Batteries
Hearing aid batteries, while improving in quality, still need to be recharged or replaced sometimes. That means that it’s essential to keep up with your hearing aids’ batteries. The first thing you should do if your hearing aid begins to fail 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 smart idea. Even if you keep batteries sealed until it’s time to use them, always a smart plan, they have a limited shelf life, and so the last batteries in that huge pack you purchased months ago most likely won’t last as long as the first few did. Another trick: Wait five minutes after you unpack new batteries before you put them in your hearing aids. This gives the zinc time to activate, and can potentially extend the life of the batteries.
Potential Pitfall: Gross Things Like Wax And Grime
No matter how clean you keep your ears, and if you have a hard time hearing, you’re much more likely than the average individual to pay attention to earwax, your hearing aids will accumulate debris and dirt. If you can hear but sounds seem distorted or slightly off, dirt might be the cause.
The fix: Clean ‘em Out—And Keep Them Clean!
There are lots of products on the market specifically for cleaning hearing aids, but you can DIY it with items you already have around the house. Once you’ve disassembled 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 stop your hearing aids from collecting excess grime by employing simple hygiene habits. Clean and dry your hands before you handle your hearing aids, and remove them while you’re doing anything, like washing up, styling your hair, or even shaving, that might put them at risk of being spritzed, sprayed, or splashed.
Potential Pitfall: Trapped Moisture
Even a little bit of moisture can really harm your hearing aid (think sweating, not snorkeling). Even humidity in the air can be an issue, blocking up the hearing aid’s air vents or causing batteries to drain faster. Depending on how much moisture’s entered, you could experience issues from sound distortion to static, to crackling. They may even appear to quit altogether.
The fix: Keep Them Dry
Make sure that when you store your hearing aids, you open the battery door; and if you’re taking them out for longer than 24 hours, take out the batteries completely. Any captured moisture will be able to evaporate and air will be able to flow with very little effort on your part.
A cool, dry place is the best spot to keep your hearing aids. The bedroom is a smart spot, skip the kitchen or bathroom. Storing them in the bathroom may seem convenient but moisture is just too much. If you live in a humid environment, you might want to think about purchasing a hearing aid storage box. 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 a pair of shoes) to absorb moisture.
None of these are working? It may be time to consult us.