If you’ve got hearing aids, you should be capable of hearing, right? When your hearing aid fails at its one job, it can be really frustrating. Fortunately, your hearing aids should have no problem doing their job if you properly maintain them.
Consider this list before you do anything rash. If it’s not one of these ordinary problems, it might be time to schedule an appointment with us to ensure there isn’t a larger issue. For example, your hearing aids might need recalibration, or your hearing could have changed.
Potential Pitfall: Low Batteries
While hearing aid batteries have gotten significantly smaller and lifespans are improving, the batteries still have to be replaced occasionally or recharged. So keeping up with charging your batteries is crucial. The first thing you need to do if your hearing aid begins to fail or cut in and out is check the battery.
The fix: Keep ‘em Fresh
A battery tester is a practical investment, especially if you like to stock up. 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 giant pack you purchased months ago most likely won’t last as long as the first few did. Another trick: Wait five minutes after you open new batteries before you put them in your hearing aids. This gives the zinc time to activate, and can potentially 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 tough time hearing, you’re much more likely than the average individual to stay on top of earwax, your hearing aids are going to accumulate dirt and debris. You may find yourself with a dirt problem if sounds seem slightly off or distorted.
The fix: Clean ‘em Out—And Keep Them Clean!
You can buy a kit for keeping your hearing aids clean or you can use things you already have around the house to keep them clean. Once you’ve disassembled your hearing aids, use a soft, microfiber cloth (like you’d use to clean glasses or smartphone) to wipe down the hardware.
Simple hygiene habits will really help with keeping your hearing aids clean. Clean and dry your hands before you take care of 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
Moisture can wreak havoc on hearing aids, and it doesn’t take very much to do so (think working up a sweat, not snorkeling). The vent in the hearing aid and the battery can even be effected by humidity in the air. Issues ranging from distortion to static or even crackling may happen depending on how much moisture is inside. They could even seem to stop working.
The fix: Keep Them Dry
Make sure that when you store your hearing aids, you open the battery door; and if you’re storing them for longer than overnight, 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 store your hearing aids. Don’t store them in the bathroom or kitchen. Even though the latter is convenient, the steam from a hot shower is specifically what you don’t want. If you live in a humid climate, you may want to think about purchasing a hearing aid storage box. Pricier models plug in, but less expensive models use desiccants or gels (yes, like those “throw away do not eat” packets you find in the box when you purchase shoes) to take in moisture.
None of these are working? It may be time to consult us.