If you have hearing aids, you should be capable of hearing, right? When your hearing aid stops doing its job, it can be seriously frustrating. Luckily, your hearing aids should have no trouble doing their job if you properly maintain them.
Go over this list before you do anything rash. If it’s not one of these common problems, it might be time to pay us a visit to ensure there isn’t a bigger issue. 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 significantly smaller and lifespans are getting better, the batteries still have to be replaced occasionally or recharged. That means that it’s essential 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
Investing in a battery tester, especially if you like to stock up, is a smart idea. Even if you keep batteries sealed until it’s time to use them, always a smart plan, they have a limited shelf life, and so the last batteries in that huge pack you bought months ago likely won’t hold a charge as long as the first few did. Another trick: Wait five minutes after you unpack new batteries before you install them. This can help extend the battery life by allowing the zinc to become active.
Potential Pitfall: Gross Things Like Wax And Grime
Your hearing aids will accumulate debris and dirt no matter how clean you keep your ears and if you have trouble hearing you’re most likely more conscientious about earwax. If you can hear but sounds seem distorted or slightly off, dirt might be the cause.
The fix: Clean Them Out—And Keep Them Clean!
You can purchase a kit for cleaning your hearing aids or you can use items you already have around the house to clean them. 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 practices will go a long way to keeping your hearing aids clean. Clean and dry your hands before you take care of your hearing aids, and remove them while you’re doing anything, such as washing up, styling your hair, or even shaving, that might put them at risk of being spritzed, sprayed, or splashed.
Potential Pitfall: Trapped Moisture
Even a little bit of moisture can really damage your hearing aid (you don’t need to be underwater, even a sweat can be problematic). Even humidity in the air can be a problem, blocking up the hearing aid’s air vents or draining faster. Issues ranging from distortion to static or even crackling may happen depending on how much moisture is inside. They might even appear to quit altogether.
The fix: Keep ‘em Dry
Make sure that when you store your hearing aids, you open the battery door; and if you’re storing them for longer than 24 hours, remove the batteries entirely. Any captured moisture will be able to evaporate and air will be able to flow with almost no effort on your part.
Store hearing aids in a cool, dry place. Don’t store them in the kitchen or bathroom. Keeping them in the bathroom may seem convenient but there’s just too much moisture. You will likely want to get a hearing aid storage box if you live in an overly humid environment. More expensive versions plug in, but less expensive options use desiccants or gels (yes, like those “throw away do not eat” packets you find in the box when you buy shoes) to take in moisture.
None of these are working out? It might be time to talk to us.