Your hearing aids should help you hear better right? When your hearing aid fails at its one job, it can be seriously frustrating. The good news is, with regular upkeep, your hearing aids should be up to the job.
Consider this list before you do anything hasty. It may be time to come in and see us if you find it’s not one of these common issues. Your hearing might have changed, for instance, or you may need a hearing aid recalibration.
Potential Pitfall: Low Batteries
Hearing aid batteries, while improving in quality, still require recharging and replacing occasionally. So staying on top of charging your batteries is crucial. The first thing you need to do if your hearing aid starts 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 practical idea. 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: When you unpack new batteries, wait 5 minutes before installing them. This gives the zinc time to become active, and can possibly extend the life of the batteries.
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 person to pay attention to earwax, your hearing aids are going to accumulate debris and dirt. If you can hear but sounds seem distorted or a little off, dirt could be the cause.
The fix: Clean ‘em Out—And Keep Them Clean!
You can get a kit for keeping your hearing aids clean or you can use things 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 hardware.
You can help stop your hearing aids from accumulating excess filth by employing basic hygiene practices. Whenever you do something that calls for liquid or dampness, such as cleaning your face or styling your hair, take your hearing aids out and make sure your hands are dry when handling them.
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 a problem). Even humidity in the air can be a problem, blocking 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 has gotten in. They could even seem to shut down.
The fix: Keep Them 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 overnight, take out the batteries entirely. Any trapped moisture will be able to evaporate and air will be able to flow with almost no effort on your part.
A cool, dry place is the best spot to store your hearing aids. Don’t keep them in the bathroom or kitchen. Although the latter is convenient, the moisture from a hot shower is precisely what you don’t want. 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 models 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.
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.