It’s difficult to accept, for many, coming to grips with and accepting the truth of hearing loss. Nonetheless, you soldiered on and went to a hearing specialist for a hearing aid fitting appointment, because you recognized that’s what is best for your health. More than likely, you immediately recognized the benefits one gets by using a hearing aid, including the ability to treat tinnitus, hear speech (even among the din of background noise), and the potential to recover from mental decline.
But sometimes, amongst all those life-changing benefits, you get one loud, piercing and shrieking downside. Your hearing aids squeal. Feedback is the more familiar term for this whistling. It’s like what happens when a microphone comes too close to the sound system, the only difference is this time it’s directly in your ear. This, fortunately for you, is an issue that can be corrected fairly easily. We’ve organized a recap of three tried-and-true ways to stop your hearing aid from whistling.
1. Modify The Fit of Your Hearing Aid
Possibly the most predominant reason for feedback or whistling in the ear concerns the placement of your hearing aid in your ear or the earmold it’s connected to. The sound can escape and reverberate through the microphone of the hearing aid if it doesn’t fit properly. Depending on how poorly the fit is and how much sound has escaped, the outcome of the leakage can be either a constant or an intermittent squealing. A plastic tube connects some hearing aid models with an earmold. As time passes, this piece can crack, harden or shrink, which unseats the earmold from its best position. If you switch out the plastic piece, you can correct the whistling which is caused by this movement.
2. Excessive Earwax Should be Removed
Earwax is actually good for our bodies, even though, ironically, we usually think of it as unwanted or even foul. This gooey compound acts as a defense against irritants like dirt and stops them from entering our ears. While your ears will self-regulate the amount of earwax you hold, through actions such as Talking and chewing, there are times when an accumulation of too much earwax can have negative consequences. When you put a hearing aid on top of an extreme amount of earwax, you’re bound to get feedback. Because of the blockage from earwax, the amplified sound can’t go anywhere and this is the reason for the feedback. With no clear exit, the sound circles and passes through the microphone again. There are a few ways to remove an overabundance of wax from your ears such as letting a warm shower run into your ears. However, the best idea might be to make an appointment with a hearing specialist about correctly cleaning your ears to avoid undue buildup and subsequent whistling.
3. Uncover the Microphone
Often the most effective solution is the most obvious. How many times have you seen someone attempting to take a photo with the lens cap on their camera and watched as they became momentarily perplexed about why the picture didn’t develop? With hearing aids the same thing can occur. Anything covering the device can cause it to whistle. You might even get the same outcome by covering the microphone with your hand or another object, like if you give someone a hug and bury your ear into their shoulder. Uncovering the hearing aid should suffice in fixing the issue.
Here’s a bonus tip: A new hearing aid may be the best option. Some causes for worry are being relieved by modern hearing aid models and manufacturers are developing new technology all of the time. Call us if you are interested in checking out new hearing aid technology or if you are having a problem with your current hearing aids whistling.