Man playing basketball wonders whether he needs new hearing aids to keep up with his active lifestyle.

Hearing aids, if you care for them correctly, can last for years. But they quit being useful if they no longer treat your level of hearing loss. Similar to prescription glasses, your hearing aids are programmed to your particular hearing loss, which should be tested on a regular basis. Here’s how long you can anticipate your hearing aids will last assuming they are programed and fitted properly.

Do Hearing Aids Expire?

There’s a shelf life for nearly any product. With the milk in your fridge, that shelf life might be several weeks. Canned products can last between several months to a number of years. Even electronics have a shelf life, your brand new high-def TV will likely have to be upgraded some time within the next five years or so. So discovering that your hearing aids have a shelf life is probably not very shocking.

Typically, a pair of hearing aids will last anywhere between 2-5 years, though with the technology emerging you might want to replace them sooner. There are several possible factors that will effect the shelf life of your hearing aids:

  • Care: It shouldn’t surprise you to find out that if you care for your hearing aids, they will last longer. This means making certain your hearing aids are cleaned on a regular basis and go through any necessary regular upkeep. Time put into proper care will translate almost directly into increased functional time.
  • Construction: Today, hearing aids are made from many types of materials, from metal to silicon to nano-coated plastics, and so on. Some wear-and-tear can be anticipated in spite of the fact that hearing aids are manufactured to be ergonomic and durable. If you’re prone to dropping your hearing aids, their longevity will be influenced despite quality construction.
  • Type: There are two basic kinds of hearing aids: inside-the-ear and behind-the-ear. Because they are exposed to the debris, sweat, and dirt from the ear canal, inside-the-ear models normally have a shelf life of around five years. Because they are able to stay dryer and cleaner, behind the ear models normally last 6-7 years.
  • Batteries: Rechargeable, internal batteries are standard with the majority of hearing aids in current use. The shelf life of your hearing aid is substantially influenced by the kind of batteries they use.

Generally, the standard usage of your hearing aid defines the real shelf life. But neglecting to wear your hearing aids might also minimize their expected usefulness (leaving your hearing aids neglected on a shelf and unmaintained can also diminish the lifespan of your hearing aids).

And every now and then, hearing aids should be inspected and cleaned professionally. This helps make sure that there is no wax buildup and that they still fit properly.

Upgrading Hearing Aids Before They Wear Down

In the future there may come a time when the efficiency of your hearing aids begins to diminish. And it will be time, therefore, to start searching for a new pair. But in certain situations, you might find a new pair beneficial well before your hearing aids start to show their age. Here are a few of those scenarios:

  • Your lifestyle changes: You may, in many cases, have a certain lifestyle in mind when you purchase your hearing aids. But maybe now your lifestyle changes require you to get hearing aids that are more durable or waterproof or rechargeable.
  • Your hearing changes: You need to change your hearing aid circumstance if the state of your hearing changes. Put simply, your hearing aids will no longer be adjusted to yield the best possible results. If you want an optimal level of hearing, new hearing aids might be needed.
  • Technology changes: Every year, hearing aid manufacturers introduce innovative new technologies that make hearing aids more useful in novel ways. If one of these cutting edge technologies looks like it’s going to help you significantly, it could be worth investing in a new pair of devices sooner rather than later.

You can see why it’s difficult to estimate a timetable for replacing your hearing aids. How many years your hearing aids will fit your needs depends on a handful of factors, but you can usually count on that 2-5 year range.

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