If you’ve got hearing aids, you should be able to hear, right? When they aren’t working properly, it can be extremely infuriating, it’s a total “You had ONE job” scenario. Luckily, your hearing aids should have no trouble doing their job if you properly maintain them.
Before you do anything drastic, consider this list. It might be time to come in and see us if you find it isn’t one of these ordinary issues. For example, your hearing aids may need recalibration, or your hearing may have changed.
Potential Pitfall: Low Batteries
Hearing aid batteries, while improving in quality, still need to be recharged or replaced occasionally. That means that it’s important to keep up with your hearing aids’ batteries. The first thing you should do if your hearing aid starts to falter or cut in and out is check the battery.
The fix: Keep ‘em Fresh
A battery tester is a practical 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: Wait five minutes after you unpack new batteries before you install them. This gives the zinc time to become active, and can potentially extend the life of the batteries.
Potential Pitfall: Gross Things Like Wax And Grime
No matter how clean you keep your ears, and if you have difficulty hearing, you’re much more likely than the average person to pay attention to earwax, your hearing aids will accumulate debris and dirt. You might find yourself with a dirt problem if sounds seem slightly off or distorted.
The fix: Clean ‘em Out—And Keep Them Clean!
There are plenty of products on the market specifically for cleaning hearing aids, but you can DIY it with items you already have around the house. You can use a microfiber cloth, like the kind you use to clean your computer screen or cellphone, to wipe your hearing aid down after taking it apart.
You can help stop your hearing aids from accumulating excess grime by practicing basic hygiene habits. Wash and dry your hands before you take care of your hearing aids, and take them out while you’re doing things, like washing your face, styling your hair, or even shaving, that may put them in danger of being spritzed, sprayed, or splashed.
Potential Pitfall: Trapped Moisture
Moisture can be a real problem for hearing aids, and it doesn’t take much to do so (you don’t need to be submerged, even a sweat can be an issue). 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 gotten in, you could experience problems from sound distortion to static, to crackling. They may even seem to shut down.
The fix: Keep ‘em Dry
Leave the battery door open when you store your hearing aid overnight and any longer than that, take the battery out. Any captured moisture will be able to evaporate and air will be able to flow with very little effort on your part.
Store hearing aids in a cool, dry spot. Don’t keep 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. You will probably want to get a hearing aid storage box if you live in an overly humid climate. More expensive versions plug in, but less costly models use desiccants or gels (yes, like those “throw away do not eat” packets you find in the box when you purchase a pair of shoes) to absorb moisture.
None of the above are working? It may be time to consult us.