If you’ve got hearing aids, you should be capable of hearing, right? When they aren’t working right, it can be downright frustrating, it’s a real “You had ONE job” situation. Here’s the good news, with regular upkeep, your hearing aids should be up to the job.
Go through this list before you do anything hasty. It might be time to come in and see us if you find it’s not one of these ordinary issues. Your hearing might have changed, for instance, or you might need a hearing aid recalibration.
Potential Pitfall: Low Batteries
Hearing aid batteries, while improving in quality, still require recharging and replacing occasionally. That means that it’s important to maintain your hearing aids’ batteries. The first thing you should 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 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 you keep them sealed. Another trick: When you unpack new batteries, wait 5 minutes before installing them. This can help the batteries last longer by allowing the zinc to activate.
Potential Pitfall: Grease, Grime, And Other Gross Stuff
Regardless of how clean you keep your ears, and if you have a hard time hearing, you’re much more likely than the average individual to stay on top of earwax, your hearing aids will gather dirt and debris. If you can hear but sounds seem distorted or a bit off, dirt could be the cause.
The fix: Clean Them Out—And Keep Them Clean!
There are lots of products on the market specifically for cleaning hearing aids, but you can DIY it with things you already have around the house. You can use a microfiber cloth, like the kind you use to clean your cellphone or glasses, to wipe your hearing aid down after disassembling it.
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 take them out while you’re doing things, such as washing your face, styling your hair, or even shaving, that might put them at risk of being spritzed, sprayed, or splattered.
Potential Pitfall: Trapped Moisture
Even a small amount of moisture can really harm your hearing aid (think working up a sweat, not snorkeling). Even humidity in the air can be a problem, clogging up the hearing aid’s air vents or draining faster. Depending on how much moisture’s entered, you may experience problems from sound distortion to static, to crackling. They may even seem to stop working.
The fix: Keep ‘em Dry
Make sure that when you store your hearing aids, the battery door is open; and if you’re taking them out for longer than 24 hours, remove the batteries entirely. It takes almost no effort and guarantees that air can circulate, and any trapped moisture can escape.
Store hearing aids in a cool, dry spot. Don’t keep them in the bathroom or kitchen. Even though the latter is convenient, the moisture from a hot shower is exactly what you don’t want. If you live in a humid environment, you might want to consider getting a hearing aid storage box. More expensive versions 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 absorb moisture.
If you’ve tried all of these and none of them are helping then it may be time for you to give us a call.