Your hearing aids should help you hear better right? When they aren’t working right, it can be thoroughly infuriating, it’s a real “You had ONE job” situation. Fortunately, your hearing aids should have no issue doing their job if you properly maintain them.
Consider this list before you do anything hasty. It may be time to come in and see us if you find it isn’t one of these common problems. Your hearing may have changed, for example, or you might need a hearing aid recalibration.
Potential Pitfall: Low Batteries
While hearing aid batteries have gotten significantly smaller and lifespans are getting better, the batteries still have to be occasionally replaced or recharged. So keeping up with charging your batteries is important. 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
Purchasing a battery tester, especially if you like to stock up, is a worthwhile idea. Batteries have a shelf life so the last batteries in the pack might not have the same voltage as the first few even if they stay sealed. Another trick: Wait five minutes after you open 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
Regardless of how clean you keep your ears, and if you have a hard time hearing, you’re much more likely than the average person to pay attention to earwax, your hearing aids will gather debris and dirt. You might find yourself with a dirt problem if sounds seem a bit off or distorted.
The fix: Clean ‘em Out—And Keep Them Clean!
There are lots of products available specifically for cleaning hearing aids, but you can DIY it with items you already have around the house. Once you’ve taken apart your hearing aids, use a soft, microfiber cloth (like you’d use to clean the screen of a computer or smartphone) to wipe down the hardware.
You can help stop your hearing aids from accumulating excess grime by employing simple hygiene habits. Clean and dry your hands before you take care of your hearing aids, and remove them while you’re doing anything, like washing up, styling your hair, or even shaving, that might put them in jeopardy of being spritzed, sprayed, or splattered.
Potential Pitfall: Trapped Moisture
Moisture can wreak havoc on hearing aids, and it doesn’t take very much to do so (think working up a sweat, not snorkeling). Even humidity in the air can be an issue, clogging up the hearing aid’s air vents or causing batteries to drain faster. Issues ranging from distortion to static or even crackling may happen depending on how much moisture is inside. They might 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. It takes almost zero effort and ensures that air can circulate, and any captured moisture can get out.
Store hearing aids in a cool, dry spot. The bedroom is a smart spot, skip the kitchen or bathroom. Storing them in the bathroom might seem convenient but moisture is just too much. If you live in a humid climate, you may want to consider investing in a hearing aid storage box. Pricier 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 shoes) to take in moisture.
None of these are working? It may be time to consult us.