Hearing aids are modern marvels of technology. Despite their diminutive size, they contain big technology and sophisticated parts. Hearing aids perform millions of calculations each second they are turned on. Good daily maintenance and hearing aid hygiene go along way in preventing many of the common problems associated with hearing aid ownership. Your hearing aid will last longer and perform better if you take care of it. When it comes to proper hearing aid care, An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
Clean Your Hearing Aids Daily
Many hearing aid repairs are due to earwax contamination. The body creates earwax to clean our ear canals. Unfortunately, as the earwax migrates down the ear canal it makes contact with your hearing aids where the sound comes out of the hearing aid is called the sound outlet tube, earmold, or receiver, depending on the style of hearing aid you have. Most modern hearing aids will have a wax filter protecting where the sound comes out. Clean the wax filter with a brush (an old toothbrush is what I use) every morning before you put them in your ears. The reason I recommend cleaning them in the morning is that at the end of the day your ear wax is fresh, soft and sticky, but in the morning it has dried and brushes off easily.
Keep Your Ears Clean
In addition to keeping the hearing aids clean, it is also important for you to keep your ears clean. Earwax secretion is a natural and necessary function of healthy ears, but it can cause trouble if it gets into the sound outlet of your hearing aids. Use a washcloth to clean your ears on a daily basis.
If you think that your ear canals may have a build up of earwax, there are over the counter products you can use such as DeBrox or any other carbamide peroxide product. Follow the directions on the package for best results. If that doesn’t take care of it, I recommend that you see your physician for earwax removal.
It is strongly recommended that you do not insert cotton swabs or any other small or sharp object into your ears. Cotton swabs may push the earwax further down the canal and sticking anything small or sharp into your ears can puncture and cause permanent damage to your eardrum.
Hearing Aids Like To Be Dry
Electronics of any kind generally don’t like moisture. Prolonged exposure to or excessive moisture/perspiration is a leading cause of hearing aid repairs. For proper hearing aid care, when not wearing your hearing aids, open the battery door and allow your aids to dry out.
An inexpensive product to help keep hearing aids dry is a dehumidifier. There are several different types of styles of hearing aid dehumidifiers. See the HearSource Accessories Page for a selection of these helpful products.
Use care when applying hairspray or other hair products. Hairspray applied while wearing hearing aids will clog the microphone ports leading to device failure. Don’t wear hearing aids while bathing, showering, swimming, etc.
Change Hearing Aid Batteries Often
Hearing aid batteries may cause damage to your devices if left in for too long. Trapped moisture can cause the batteries to corrode, damaging your aids. Open the hearing aid battery doors when they are not being worn. If you will not be wearing your hearing aids for a few days, it is best to remove the batteries.
Hearing Aid Trouble Shooting Tips
If you are having issues with the performance of your hearing aids, try these simple steps before sending your hearing aids in for repair:
- Make sure the hearing aid is turned on: This seems simple, but check anyway.
- Check the volume: Make sure the volume control is at the correct setting and wasn’t accidentally turned down.
- Check the battery: Put a fresh battery in your hearing aid. Even if you think you just put a fresh battery in, try it once more. Make sure that the batteries are not out of date. Most battery packages have an expiration date on them. Don’t leave hearing aid batteries in your car or in direct sun.
- Check your wax filter: Usually a little white or colored area where the sound comes out of the hearing aid and into your ear. Brush it with a brush. If you have a supply of wax filters, change it. Replacement wax filters can be purchased from the HearSource Accessories Page.
- BTE (behind-the-ear) hearing aids: If you wear BTE hearing aids, the tubing can sometimes become clogged with earwax or over time can shrink and become hard. Any hearing care professional can quickly and inexpensively clean or replace BTE tubing.
If That Doesn’t Do It
Despite your best efforts, you may need your hearing aid repaired at some point. In the hearing aid world, that is just the way it is. Here is when to send your hearing aids into HearSource for repair:
- You’ve attempted all the troubleshooting tips listed above and your hearing aids still aren’t working.
- Your hearing aid has been physically damaged, such as the case or shell is cracked or has a hole in it.
- One of your controls isn’t functioning (volume control wheel, such button, etc.)
- Static, buzzing, or just plain won’t work.
If you need to have your hearing aids professionally repaired, please contact HearSource for affordable hearing aid repairs.