Hearing aids have been shown to benefit your health in surprising ways including increasing cognitive abilities, minimizing depression, and limiting your chance of falling. Which is why when these devices seem like they fail to function properly, it’s so frustrating. When you begin noticing screeching feedback, or when your hearing aids suddenly go silent, expedient solutions can be the difference between a lovely family dinner or a difficult one.
Fortunately, some of the most fundamental hearing aid issues can be reduced with a few practical troubleshooting steps. The sooner you ascertain what’s wrong with your hearing aid, the sooner you can go back to what’s important.
Try Changing The Batteries
One of the most common issues with hearing aids is a low battery. Rechargeable batteries come standard with some hearing aid models. Replaceable batteries are standard on other hearing aids. If you’re going through any of these symptoms, it most likely means the batteries are to blame for your hearing aid problems.
- Dull sound quality: Voices sound muffled like they are far away or underwater.
- Hearing aids won’t turn on: There’s a good chance that your battery is to blame if your hearing aid keeps shutting itself off or doesn’t turn on at all.
- Weak sounds: You’re struggling to hear what’s happening around you and that seems to be occurring more and more.
- Make sure the batteries are completely charged. If your hearing aid is equipped with rechargeable batteries, charge them for a few hours or overnight.
- Swap out the batteries if your hearing aid is manufactured to allow that. You might need to bring your hearing aid in to a professional if the battery is sealed inside.
- Having the right batteries is essential so make sure you double check that. Putting the wrong type of battery into your hearing aid can lead to malfunctions. (Sometimes, a battery will seem to be the same size as a different battery so it’s essential that you be cautious and check twice.)
Try Cleaning Every Surface
Hearing aids, naturally, 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 in the process of helping you hear, it’s no surprise that your hearing aid can get a little dirty. Most hearing aid models are manufactured to cope with some earwax buildup, but it’s a practical idea to have a routine cleaning plan also. Here are some of the issues that can come from too much buildup:
- Discomfort: Earwax can buildup to the point where the fit of your hearing aid becomes a little tight. Occasionally, the plastic in the molds will harden and need to be exchanged.
- Muffled sound: If your hearing aid sounds like it’s hiding behind something, it might just be. There may be earwax or other buildup getting in the way.
- Feedback: The feedback canceling function on your hearing aid can be interrupted by earwax buildup creating a whistling noise.
Here’s what you do about it:
- Check the earwax filter to ensure it’s clean; replace it if needed.
- The tip of your hearing aid can become coated and plugged up by earwax and debris so look for that. Clean with your cleaning tool or as directed by the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Taking your hearing aid to a professional for routine upkeep is an essential procedure.
- Clean your hearing aid gently in the way that the manufacturer has recommended.
You May Just Need a Little Time
The hearing aid itself isn’t necessarily the issue. When you first pop in your hearing aids, your brain has to get used to hearing the outside world again. As your mind adapts, you might notice that certain sounds are unpleasantly loud (the hum of the refrigerator, for example). And certain consonants frequently sound louder than the rest of the speech.
As your brain works to catch up, before long, you’ll adjust.
However, it’s important not to let too much time pass, with any issue, before getting help. If your hearing aids are uncomfortable or you’re getting continuous noise issues or things don’t seem to be working just the way they ought to be, we can help get you back on track and ensure you’re enjoying, not enduring, your hearing aids.