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Comprehensive Hearing Aid Maintenance Guide

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Table of Contents
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Hearing aids are not the device you would want to change every month. They generally last for many years with optimum performance, if taken care of properly. So, in this hearing aid maintenance guide, let’s find out these tips and routine through which you can also use your hearing aid with the same efficiency for years. 

What’s a Hearing Aid? 

Hearing aids are small electronic devices which are generally worn by people with hearing loss to hear and communicate in or behind their ear. It contains an amplifier for increasing sound strength, a microphone that pick-up sound, and a speaker that delivers the amplified sound to your ear.

Importance of Hearing Aid Maintenance

Hearing aids significantly enhance the quality of the sound you hear from your environment. So, to get the best use of your hearing aid, its maintenance is necessary. 

Some of the ways the maintenance of hearing aids can be helpful for you are:

  • Cleaning clogged pores of your microphone and speaker of hearing aid can provide you with clear and consistent audio.
  • You can prevent sudden malfunction and its potential consequences of improper functioning of your hearing aid. 
  • With regular cleaning and maintenance you can increase the lifespan of your hearing aid. 
  • Hearing is somehow your financial investment. And malfunctioning before time is going to waste it. So a maintenance schedule becomes crucial for protecting it.

Daily Hearing Aid Maintenance Guide

Here is a detailed hearing aid maintenance:

Cleaning Your Hearing Aids

  • Clean your hearing aids at the end of the day to prevent the buildup of earwax and other debris.
  • Turn off and open the battery compartment to avoid draining the battery during cleaning.
  • Gently wipe the hearing aids with a soft, dry cloth to remove any visible dirt or earwax.
  • Avoid using water, alcohol, or cleaning agents as these can damage the devices.

Tools

For tools, you can pick:

Soft Cloth

You can use a soft, dry cloth to wipe down the exterior of the hearing aids. This will help remove surface dirt and oils from the handling.

Cleaning Brush

Many hearing aids come with a small, specialized brush for cleaning. Just use this brush and gently sweep away any earwax or debris from the microphone and speaker openings.

Wax Pick

A wax pick is a tool designed to remove earwax from the crevices and small openings of the hearing aids. But be gentle and avoid damaging the delicate components.

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Proper Storage

Moisture can cause malfunction and corrosion in the electronic components of your hearing aid. So, keeping them dry is important. 

For keeping them dry you can store them in a hearing aid dehumidifier overnight. A dehumidifier uses desiccants to remove moisture and keep your hearing aid dry. 

One should consider using a dehumidifier if you live in a humid place or if the weather is sweaty.

Safe Storage

For safe storage follow this:

Do not store your hearing aid in direct sunlight, near heaters, or in hot cars. Excessive heat can damage the internal components and battery of your hearing aid.

Also, keep your hearing aid away from water. Remove them before showering, swimming, or using hair products like sprays and gels.

Weekly Hearing Aid Maintenance Guide

Clean earmolds and tubing of your hearing aid by following these steps:

Step 1: Remove the tubing and earmolds from your hearing aids. Do this only if the style and model of your hearing aid allow it, and follow your owner’s manual.

Step 2: Soak the earmolds and tubing in warm, soapy water. It is recommended to use mild, non-alcoholic soap.

Step 3: Lightly scrub the earmolds with a soft-bristled brush to clean out earwax and debris. Be careful not to apply too much force.

Step 4:Rinse thoroughly with clean water to ensure complete removal of soap residue.

Step 5: Shake out any water or use a bulb blower to blow out any remaining moisture from the tubing. All moisture must be expelled before replacing the tubing onto your hearing aid, as moisture could damage your hearing aids if not completely dried.

How to Inspect Hearing Aid For Damage

Carefully examine your earmolds, tubing, and hearing aids for any visible signs of damage.

Look for cracks, splits, and discoloration. Ensure the tubing is not hard or brittle and that the earmolds still fit comfortably in your ear.

If you notice any damage or significant wear, contact your audiologist or hearing aid provider for repairs or replacements.

How Often to Change Batteries and Proper Landing?

The kind of hearing aid you use and, of course, how much you use it will all affect how long the batteries last.

If your hearing aid uses zinc-air batteries, their charge can last for 3-7 days.

Tips for Recharging

Remember these suggestions if you are using a rechargeable hearing aid:

  • To ensure that your hearing aid is ready to use the next day, charge it overnight by placing it on your charging station.
  • Keep your charging station clean and dry to avoid moisture.
  • Have an extra set of charged batteries on hand in case you forget to charge your device. 

Monthly and Seasonal Hearing Aid Maintenance Guide

Professional Check-ups

Make it a habit to visit an audiologist every month or seasonally if that’s what your need dictates. If nothing else, having an audiologist visit on a regular basis will give you the freedom to check upon and assure you of the optimal functioning of your hearing aid.

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What to expect during a professional cleaning and check-up?

Your audiologist can help guide you through the process of changing your health over time. They may also expect:

  • Your audiologist will thoroughly inspect your hearing aids for wear and tear, damage, or breakdown. They will also examine the major parts such as the earmold, and tubing, among other parts to check if there are cracks, or there is a blockage in them.
  • Professional cleaning will be done with enhanced tools and techniques that you use at home. They will do away with accumulated ear wax, moisture, and other litter.
  • The audiologist might also carry out tests to ensure that the hearing aids give the exact amplification and clarity of sound. They may also adjust settings to better meet your current hearing needs.

Software Updates

Have control over the software updates for the best of the hearing aid. Some advanced hearing aids can be connected to your phones and computers for easy installation of the updates.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

Here are some of the common trouble shooting problem you must know while searching for hearing aid maintenance guide:

Feedback and Whistling

Build-up of earwax in your ear canal can block or cover the hearing aid’s microphone. This will make the sound bounce back, and this can create feedback.

In case the hearing aid does not fit properly, sound can leak out and re-enter into the microphone, causing a whistling noise. Sound leak in the microphone of the hearing aid, caused by it not fitting properly on your ear, causes a whistling noise.

Solutions

Regularly clean your device. It can help reduce wax build-up. For that use cleaning tools such as a wax pick and brush.

Also, confirm that the earmolds of your hearing aids fit firmly over your ears. See your audiologist if they are uncomfortable or loose so that new earmolds can be manufactured or the fit can be changed

If feedback persists despite trying the preceding solutions, consult with your audiologist.

Sound Distortion or Weakness

Excess earwax or debris could build up in the microphone or in the speaker of your hearing aid. This may compromise the sound quality. The sound may be distorted or weak from your hearing aid due to internal problems, like damaged components or software errors. A weak sound may be a sign that your battery is low or that there is a bad connection.

Solutions

Clean the hearing aids completely, with a special emphasis on the microphone and speaker areas. 

Make sure that every opening is free from blockages. 

Replace the batteries on a regular basis and ensure they are inserted correctly. If the problem persists, go to a hearing professional for repairs.

How Often Should I Clean my Hearing Aid?

One must be cautious to clean each day. For thorough cleaning, it is advised to be cleaned monthly and then weekly. 

You can even consider visiting your audiologist for periodic maintenance to ensure that all the internal devices of your hearing aid are functioning properly.

Can You Clean and Reuse Hearing aid dome?

Hearing aid domes are small, soft tips that attach to the end of the hearing aid tubing or receivers. They sit inside the ear canal and help deliver sound from the hearing aid into the ear.

And yes you can clean and reuse hearing aid domes to maintain its hygiene and sound quality.

Along with regular cleaning, you can also go for the replacement of hearing aid domes every 1-2 months. As with time they can lose their shape, become less effective, or accumulate materials that are difficult to remove entirely.

Conclusion

You have to wear your hearing aid almost every day so its malfunction can definitely affect your daily routine significantly. So follow this hearing aid maintenance guide understanding its importance in your life. Keep up with regular cleaning periodically, use proper tools, and stay ahead with the latest updates. And you’re good to go.

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