Your hearing aids should help you hear better right? When they aren’t working correctly, it can be thoroughly frustrating, it’s a total “You had ONE job” situation. The good news is, with regular upkeep, your hearing aids should be up to the job.
Before you do anything extreme, consider this list. If it’s not one of these common problems, it may be time to schedule an appointment with us to make sure there isn’t a more substantial problem. Your hearing might have changed, for example, or you may need a hearing aid recalibration.
Potential Pitfall: Low Batteries
While hearing aid batteries have gotten dramatically smaller and lifespans are improving, the batteries still have to be replaced occasionally or recharged. So keeping up with charging your batteries is important. If it seems as if the sound is fading or coming and going, check your battery first.
The fix: Keep ‘em Fresh
A battery tester is a beneficial investment, particularly if you like to stock up. Batteries have a shelf life so the last batteries in the pack might not have as much voltage as the first few even if they stay sealed. Another trick: When you open new batteries, wait 5 minutes before putting them in. This can help the batteries last longer by allowing the zinc to become active.
Potential Pitfall: Grease, Grime, And Other Gross Stuff
Your hearing aids will collect debris and dirt regardless of how clean you keep your ears and if you have trouble hearing you’re probably more conscientious about earwax. You may find yourself with a dirt issue 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 items 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 components.
Simple hygiene habits will really help with keeping your hearing aids clean. Whenever you do something that involves liquid or moisture, such as washing your face or styling your hair, take your hearing aids out and make sure your hands aren’t wet when handling them.
Potential Pitfall: Trapped Moisture
Moisture can be a real problem for hearing aids, and it doesn’t take much to do so (you won’t need to be underwater, even sweating can be an issue). The vent in the hearing aid and the battery can even be effected by humidity in the air. Problems ranging from distortion to static or even crackling might happen depending on how much moisture is inside. They might even seem to quit altogether.
The fix: Keep ‘em Dry
Keep the battery door open when you store your hearing aid overnight and any longer than that, take the battery out. It takes almost zero effort and ensures that air can circulate, and any trapped moisture can escape.
Store hearing aids in a cool, dry place. Don’t store them in the kitchen or bathroom. Even though the latter is convenient, the steam from a hot shower is precisely what you don’t want. You will most likely want to purchase a hearing aid storage box if you live in an overly humid environment. More expensive models plug in, but less costly options 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 take in moisture.
None of these are working out? It might be time to consult us.