Hearing aids have been shown to improve your health in unsuspected ways including increasing cognitive abilities, reducing depression, and decreasing your chance of falling. Which is why it can be so irritating when these devices fail to function properly. The difference between a delightful dinner with family or a horrible time can be made by discovering a quick remedy when your hearing aid starts screeching with feedback or goes silent altogether.
Fortunately, some of the most basic hearing aid problems can be alleviated with a few practical troubleshooting measures. Finding out what’s happening with your hearing aid as fast as possible will can you back to what’s important all the sooner.
Try Swapping Out The Batteries
A low battery is one of the most prevalent issues with hearing aids. Rechargeable batteries come standard with many hearing aid models. Changeable batteries are standard on other models. Here are a few of the symptoms that might give you a clue that the batteries are the culprit when your device starts to malfunction:
- Dull sound quality: Voices sound dull like they are far away or underwater.
- Hearing aids won’t turn on: If your hearing aid won’t turn on, or won’t stay on, there’s a good possibility the battery is the principal issue.
- Weak sounds: You’re struggling to hear what’s happening around you and that seems to be occurring more and more.
Here’s what you do about it:
- Double-check to make sure the correct batteries are installed. Putting the wrong kind of battery in your hearing aid can result in malfunctions. (Sometimes, a battery will appear to be the same size as a different battery so it’s essential that you be careful and check twice.)
- Swap out the batteries if your hearing aid is manufactured to allow that. In some situations, rechargeable batteries are sealed into the device, and if that’s the situation, you may need to bring the hearing aid to a specialist.
- Ensure the batteries are completely charged. Allow your rechargeable batteries to charge overnight or for at least a few hours.
Try Cleaning Every Surface
Hearing aids, obviously, spend a lot of time in your ears. And there’s a lot happening in there (your ears are like party rooms, only more hygienic). So it’s no surprise that your hearing aids can get a little dirty in the process of helping you hear. Most hearing aid models are manufactured to handle some earwax accumulation, but it’s a practical idea to have a regular cleaning plan also. A few issues related to buildup and dirt could include:
- Muffled sound: If your hearing aid sounds like it’s lost behind something, it might just be. There may be earwax or other accumulation getting in the way.
- Discomfort: If they feel like they’re suddenly too large for your ears, it might be because earwax accumulation has started interfering with the fit. Occasionally, the plastic in the molds will harden and need to be replaced.
- Feedback: The feedback canceling function on your hearing aid can be interrupted by earwax buildup creating a whistling sound.
Here’s what you do about it:
- Check the earwax filter to ensure it is clean; replace it if needed.
- The tip of your hearing aid can become covered and clogged up by earwax and debris so look for that. Clean with your cleaning tool or as directed by the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Ensure you are bringing your hearing aids to a specialist for routine maintenance and cleaning.
- Lightly clean your hearing aids, as per the manufacturer’s suggestions.
You May Simply Need a Little Time
In some cases, the issue isn’t an issue with the hearing aid. When your brain isn’t used to hearing the outside world, it can take some time to adjust to your new hearing aids. Particular sounds (the buzzing of an air conditioner, for example) may at first seem unpleasantly loud. You may also detect that certain consonant sounds may seem overly pronounced.
As your brain works to catch up, before long, you’ll adapt.
But it’s important to get help with any problems before too much time passes. If your hearing aids are not comfortable or you’re experiencing continuous noise problems or things don’t seem to be working just the way they ought to be, we can help get you back on track and make sure you’re enjoying, not enduring, your hearing aids.