If you have ever had to get used to new eyeglasses or dental appliances, then you understand that hearing aids also require a period of adjustment. Various mental, emotional, and physical effects come with breaking in new hearing aids. To ease my patients through the process of getting used to new hearing aids, here is what you can expect during the adjustment process.
Getting Used to Amplified Sounds
One of the biggest adjustments experienced by new hearing aid users is the sudden amplification of sounds that were absent or muffled before putting in their hearing aids. Sounds you have not heard for a while, such as street noise, background conversations, the refrigerator motor, and the singing or chatter of birds, suddenly come to life. These sounds, as well as your own voice, can sound quite different due to the new volume. I advise my patients to practice wearing your new hearing aids at home for several days before venturing out into the wider world and to read aloud to yourself to help adjust to your own voice.
Taking Breaks from Your Hearing Aids
Although modern hearing aids don’t weigh much, their weight is something your ears are not used to. Begin the adjustment period by wearing your aids for several hours, then take a break if necessary. Your ears need to get used to physically having something in them and it is ok to take breaks when needed. You may need to build up to the goal of wearing them all day. Every person’s adjustment time is different.
Regular Cleaning and Maintenance
Cleaning and maintenance, though not labor-intensive, are a necessary routine included with wearing hearing aids. Daily cleaning makes it even easier, helps you to become more familiar with the various parts of your hearing aids, and allows you to recognize any damage early so you can have them repaired. Regular cleaning and maintenance help with performance and longevity as well.
Digital technology has made troubleshooting hearing aids much easier, but some time and concentration are necessary to get the most out of your wearing experience. You should be familiar with how to troubleshoot common issues such as:
- No Sound
- Uncomfortable Sound
- Whistling or Feedback
- Wearing Discomfort
Stay Connected to Jacobs Audiology
A significant part of adjusting to your new hearing aids includes staying connected with your hearing care provider for support and encouragement. My staff and I at Jacobs Audiology have helped thousands of new hearing aid wearers through the process of getting used to their instruments, and we have learned a lot of secrets and tips to help you through the process. Contact us for questions or concerns about your hearing aids or to schedule a teleaudiology appointment for follow up.