Congratulations! You’ve just become the proud owner of hearing aids – an incredible piece of modern technology. But, just like with any new device, there will be things that hearing aid wearers wish someone had told them.
Let’s examine how a new hearing aid owner can avoid the 9 most common hearing aid mistakes.
1. Neglecting to comprehend hearing aid functionality
Or, more specifically, know how your hearing aid works. The hearing experience will be greatly enhanced if you know how to use advanced features for different settings like on the street, at the movies, or in a restaurant.
Your wireless devices, including smartphones and televisions can probably sync wirelessly to your hearing aids. Additionally, it may have a specific setting that helps you hear on the phone.
If you use this advanced technology in such a rudimentary way, without learning about these features, you can easily become stuck in a rut. Modern hearing aids do more than simply increase the volume of external sounds.
To get the clearest and best sound, take some time to practice wearing the hearing aid in different settings. Ask a friend or family member to help you so you can check how well you can hear.
Like anything new, it will get easier after a bit of practice. And your hearing experience will be much better than when you simply turn the volume up and down.
2. Thinking that your hearing will automatically improve
It’s not uncommon for a new hearing aid users to think that their hearing will be optimal from the first day. This is an incorrect assumption. Some people say it takes a month or more before they’re completely comfortable with their hearing aid. But stay positive. They also say it’s very worth it.
Give yourself a few days, after getting home, to get used to your new experience. It’s like breaking in a new pair of shoes. You might need to wear it in short intervals.
Start in a quiet setting with a friend where you’re just talking. It can be a bit disorienting initially because people’s voices may sound different. Ask your friends if you’re speaking too loud and make the required adjustments.
Slowly begin to go to new places and wear the hearing aid for more extended periods of time.
You will have wonderful hearing experiences ahead of you if you can only be patient with yourself.
3. Not being truthful about your level of hearing loss during your hearing appointment
In order to be certain you get the proper hearing aid technology, it’s essential to answer any questions we may ask honestly.
If you already have your hearing aid and realize that maybe you weren’t as honest as you could have been, go back and ask to be retested. But it’s easier if you get it right the first time. The hearing aid type and style that will be best for you will be determined by the degree and kind of hearing loss you’re experiencing.
As an example, people with hearing loss in the high frequency range will need a specific type of hearing aid. People who have mid-range hearing loss will call for different technology and etc.
4. Neglecting to have your hearing aid fitted
There are numerous requirements that your hearing aids need to simultaneously juggle: they need to be comfortable on or in your ears, they need to be simple to put in and remove, and they need to boost the sounds around you efficiently. Your hearing aid fitting is meant to properly calibrate all three of those factors for your individual requirements.
When you’re getting fitted, you might:
- Do hearing tests to calibrate the appropriate power for your hearing aid.
- Have molds of your ears made and measurements taken.
5. Not tracking your results
Once you’ve been fitted, it’s important to take notes on how your hearing aid feels and performs. Make a note if you are having difficulty hearing in a large room. If your right ear seems tighter than your left, note that. If everything feels great, make a note. This can help us make personalized, minute changes to help your hearing aids reach optimum comfort and effectiveness.
6. Not planning how you will utilize your hearing aid in advance
Some hearing aids are resistant to water. However, water can significantly damage others. Some have advanced features you might be willing to pay more for because you take pleasure in certain activities.
We can give you some suggestions but you must choose for yourself. Only you know which state-of-the-art features you’ll actually use and that’s worth investing in because if the hearing aids don’t work with your lifestyle you won’t use them.
You’ll be wearing your hearing aid for quite a while. So if you really need certain features, you shouldn’t settle for less.
A few more things to contemplate
- How obvious your hearing aid is may be important to you. Or maybe you want to wear them with style.
- You might prefer something that is really automated. Or perhaps you enjoy having more control over the volume. Is a longer battery life important to you?
- Consult with us about these things before your fitting so you can make sure you’re entirely satisfied.
During the fitting process we can deal with many of the issues with regards to lifestyle, fit, and how you use your hearing aids. In addition, many hearing aid brands will let you demo the devices before making a decision. During this test period, you’ll be able to get an idea of whether a particular brand of hearing aid would be right for you.
7. Not properly caring for your hearing aids
The majority of hearing aids are quite sensitive to moisture. You may want to get a dehumidifier if you live in an overly humid place. It’s a bad idea to store your hearing aid in the bathroom where everyone showers.
Consistently wash your hands before touching the hearing aid or batteries. Oils encountered normally on your hand can impact how well the hearing aid works and the life of the batteries.
Don’t let earwax or skin cells build up on the hearing aid. Instead, clean it according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
Taking simple actions like these will improve the life and function of your hearing aid.
8. Not getting spare batteries
New hearing aid wearers often learn this concept at the worst times. All of a sudden, when you’re watching your favorite show, your batteries quit just as you’re about to learn “who done it”.
Like many electronic devices, battery life varies depending on how you use it and the outside environment. So always keep a spare set of batteries nearby, even if you just changed them. Don’t allow an unpredictable battery to cause you to miss out on something important.
9. Neglecting your hearing exercises
When you first purchase your hearing aids, there may be a presumption, and it’s not always a baseless assumption, that your hearing aid will do all the heavy lifting. But it’s not only your ears that are affected by hearing loss, it’s also the parts of your brain responsible for interpreting all those sounds.
Once you get your hearing aids, you’ll be able to begin the work of restoring some of those ear-to-brain pathways and connections. This might happen quite naturally for some individuals, particularly if the hearing loss was rather recent. But for other people, a deliberate strategy might be required to get your hearing back to normal again. A couple of common strategies include the following.
Reading out loud
One of the best ways you can recreate those pathways between your ears and your brain is to spend some time reading out loud. It may feel a bit silly at first, but don’t allow that to stop you. You’re doing the important work of linking the words (which you read) to the sound (which you say). The more you establish those connections, the better your hearing (and your hearing aid) will work.
If you’re uncomfortable with the idea of reading something out loud yourself, then you can always go the audiobook route. You can get a physical copy of the book and an audio copy. Then as the audiobook plays, you can read along. This does the same work as reading something out loud, you hear a word while you’re reading it. And that helps the hearing-and-language part of your brain get accustomed to hearing (and making sense of) speech again.