Congrats! Modern hearing aids are an amazing piece of technology, and you’ve just become the proud owner of a shiny new pair. But, as with any new device, there are things that hearing aid owners wish someone had told them.
Let’s assess how a new hearing aid owner can eliminate the 9 most common hearing aid mistakes.
1. Failing to understand hearing aid functionality
To put it simply, learn your hearing aid’s features. It likely has unique features that drastically enhance the hearing experience in different environments like restaurants, theaters, or walking down the street.
It might be able to sync wirelessly to your smartphone, TV, or stereo. Additionally, it may have a specific setting that helps you hear on the phone.
If you don’t learn about these features, it’s so easy to get stuck in a rut by using your technologically-sophisticated hearing aid in a basic way. Hearing aids nowadays can do more than make the sound louder.
In order to get the clearest and best sound quality, take some time to practice using the hearing aid in different places. Ask a family member or friend to help you so you can test how well you can hear.
After a little practice, as with anything new, it will get easier. And your hearing experience will be much better than when you just raise and lower the volume.
2. Expecting immediate improvement in your hearing
It’s not unusual for a new hearing aid owner to think that their hearing will be optimal from the first day. This isn’t a correct assumption. It generally takes up to a month for most new users to become comfortable with their new hearing aids. But don’t get discouraged. They also say it’s really worth it.
After getting home, give yourself a couple of days to become accustomed to the new experience. It won’t be that much different than breaking in new shoes. Sometimes, you will need to go slow and wear your new hearing aids a little at a time.
Begin by just talking quietly with friends. Familiar voices may not sound the same initially, and this can be disorienting. Ask about the volume of your own voice and make adjustments.
Slowly increase the time you wear your hearing aids and progressively add new places to visit.
Be patient with yourself, and you’ll have countless wonderful hearing experiences to look forward to.
3. Not being honest about your level of hearing loss during your hearing appointment
In order to be certain you get the right hearing aid technology, it’s essential to answer any questions we may ask honestly.
Go back and get another test if you realize you might not have been completely honest after you get your hearing aids. Getting it straight the first time is better. The degree and kind of hearing loss will identify the hearing aid styles that work best for you.
For example, some hearing aids are better for individuals with hearing loss in the high-frequency range. Others are better for people with mid-frequency hearing loss and so on.
4. Failing to have your hearing aid fitted
There are numerous requirements that your hearing aids need to simultaneously manage: they need to be comfortable on or in your ears, they need to be easy to place and take out, and they need to boost the sounds around you efficiently. Your hearing aid fitting is intended to correctly calibrate all three of those variables for your individual needs.
When you’re getting fitted, you might:
- Have your hearing tested to determine the power level of your hearing aid.
- Have your ears accurately measured or have molds made (or both).
5. Not tracking your results
It’s important that you take notes on how your hearing aid performs and feels after you get fitted. If you have trouble hearing in big rooms, make a note of that. Make a note if one ear feels tighter than the other. Even note if everything feels great. With this information, we can customize the settings of your hearing aid so it functions at peak effectiveness and comfort.
6. Not planning how you will utilize your hearing aid in advance
Water-resistant hearing aids do exist. Others, however, can be damaged or even destroyed by water. Some have advanced features you might be willing to pay more for because you take pleasure in certain activities.
You can ask our opinion but the choice must be yours. Only you know which advanced features you’ll actually use and that’s worth committing to because if the hearing aids don’t fit in with your lifestyle you won’t use them.
You and your hearing aid will be together for a number of years. So if you really need certain functions, you don’t want to settle for less.
Some other things to consider
- To be very satisfied, discuss these preferences before your fitting.
- You might prefer something that is extremely automated. Or perhaps you’re more of a do-it-yourself kind of person. How much battery life will you require?
- How obvious your hearing aid is might be something you’re worried about. Or maybe you want to wear them with style.
During the fitting process we can address many of the issues with regards to lifestyle, fit, and how you use your hearing aids. Also, you might be able to try out your hearing aids before you commit to a purchase. During this trial period, you’ll be able to get an idea of whether a particular brand of hearing aid would fit the bill.
7. Not properly taking care of your hearing aids
Moisture is a real challenge for most hearing aids. If you live in a humid place, acquiring a dehumidifier might be worth the investment. It’s not a good idea to keep your hearing aid in the bathroom where everyone showers.
Before you touch your hearing aid or its battery, be sure to clean your hands. Oils found naturally on your hand can impact how well the hearing aid functions and the life of the batteries.
Don’t let earwax or skin cells accumulate on the hearing aid. Instead, the manufacturer’s suggested cleaning procedures should be implemented.
Taking simple actions like these will improve the life and function of your hearing aid.
8. Failing to have a spare set of batteries
Frequently, it’s the worst time when new hearing aid owners learn this one. When you’re about to find out who did it at the crucial moment of your favorite show, your batteries die without warning.
Like most electronic devices, battery life fluctuates depending on how you use it and the external environment. So always keep an extra set of batteries nearby, even if you recently replaced them. Don’t allow an unpredictable battery to cause you to miss something significant.
9. Neglecting your hearing exercises
When you first get your hearing aids, there might be a presumption, and it’s not always a baseless assumption, that your hearing aid will do all the work. But the regions of your brain responsible for interpreting sound are also affected by hearing loss not only your ears.
You can start to work on rebuilding those ear-to-brain pathways once you get your new hearing aids. This may take place quite naturally for some individuals, particularly if the hearing loss was rather recent. But other people will need a more structured plan to restore their ability to hear. The following are a couple of prevalent strategies.
Reading out loud
One of the best ways you can recreate those connections between your ears and your brain is to spend some time reading out loud. Even if you feel a bit strange initially you should still practice like this. You’re doing the important work of linking the words (which you read) to the sound (which you say). The more you create those connections, the better your hearing (and your hearing aid) will work.
You can always use audiobooks if reading out loud isn’t appealing to you. You can purchase (or rent from the library) a physical copy of a book and the audiobook version together. Then, you read along with the book while the audiobook plays. This does the same job as reading something out loud, you hear a word while you’re reading it. This will teach the language parts of your brain to hear speech again.