Lowering your chance of depression, minimizing the danger of falling, and enhancing cognitive ability are some of the unsuspected health advantages that have been shown to come from wearing hearing aids. Which is why when your hearing aids seem like they malfunction, it’s so frustrating. The difference between a pleasant dinner with family or a horrible time can be made by discovering a quick remedy when your hearing aid starts screeching with feedback or goes silent altogether.
Luckily, there are some basic troubleshooting measures you can take that could alleviate or address some common hearing aid problems. The sooner you ascertain what’s going on with your hearing aid, the sooner you can get back to what’s important.
Maybe The Batteries Need to be Swapped Out
A low battery is one of the most common issues with hearing aids. Some hearing aids come with rechargeable batteries. Other devices are made to have their batteries swapped out. Here are a few of the symptoms that may give you a clue that the batteries are the culprit when your device starts to malfunction:
- Dull sound quality: It feels like somebody is talking to you underwater or from across the room.
- Hearing aids won’t turn on: If your hearing aid won’t turn on, or keeps shutting off, there’s a good chance the battery is the principal issue.
- Weak sounds: You’re struggling to hear what’s happening around you and that seems to be occurring more frequently.
- Make sure you have fully charged batteries. If your hearing aid is equipped with rechargeable batteries, charge them for several hours or overnight.
- Having the right batteries is essential so make sure you double check that. Your hearing aid can be damaged by the wrong battery. (Occasionally, a battery will seem to be the same size as a different battery so it’s essential that you be cautious and check twice.)
- Swap out the batteries if your hearing aid is designed to allow that. In some situations, rechargeable batteries are sealed into the device, and if that’s the case, you may have to take the hearing aid to a professional.
Try Cleaning Every Surface
Hearing aids, obviously, spend a lot of time in your ears. And there’s a lot going on in there (your ears are like party rooms, only more hygienic). So it’s not surprising that your hearing aids may get somewhat dirty in the process of helping you hear. Most hearing aid models are manufactured to cope with a certain amount of earwax buildup, but it’s a good idea to have a regular cleaning plan too. A few problems related to buildup and dirt could include:
- Muffled sound: If your hearing aid sounds like it’s hiding behind something, maybe it is. There may be earwax or other accumulation getting in the way.
- Discomfort: If they feel as if they’re suddenly too large for your ears, it may be because earwax accumulation has begun interfering with the fit. Occasionally, the plastic in the molds will harden and need to be exchanged.
- Feedback: It’s possible that earwax buildup can obstruct the feedback canceling functions of your hearing aid, causing you to hear a whining noise.
- Examine the earwax filter to ensure it’s clean; replace it if necessary.
- Double-check the tip of the hearing aid to ensure it is not covered or blocked by debris or earwax. Clean with your cleaning tool or as advised by the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Lightly clean your hearing aids, as per the manufacturer’s guidelines.
- Taking your hearing aid to a specialist for regular upkeep is an important procedure.
You May Simply Need Some Time
Sometimes, the problem isn’t an issue with the hearing aid. When your brain isn’t used to hearing the outside world, it can take a little time to get used to your new hearing aids. As your mind adapts, you might notice that some sounds are unpleasantly loud (the hum of the refrigerator, for instance). And some consonants often sound louder than the rest of the speech.
These are all clues that your brain is racing to catch up to sound again and, before long, you’ll adjust.
But it’s important to get help with any problems before too much time goes by. If your hearing aids are uncomfortable or you’re getting continuous noise problems or things don’t seem to be working exactly the way they should be, we can help get you back on track and ensure you’re enjoying, not enduring, your hearing aids.