Congrats! You’ve just become the proud owner of hearing aids – an incredible piece of modern tech. But, as with any new device, there are things that hearing aid owners wish someone had told them.
Let’s go over nine typical mistakes new hearing aid owners make and how to steer clear of them.
1. Neglecting to understand hearing aid functionality
To put it simply, learn your hearing aid’s features. The hearing experience will be greatly enhanced if you know how to utilize advanced features for different environments like on the street, at the movies, or in a restaurant.
It may be able to sync wirelessly to your smartphone, TV, or stereo. It might also have a setting that makes phone conversations clearer.
If you fail to learn about these features, it’s so easy to get stuck in a rut by using your technologically-advanced hearing aid in a rudimentary way. Hearing aids nowadays can do more than make the sound louder.
Practice using your hearing aid in different places in order to learn how to attain the clearest sound quality. Test out how well you hear by asking a friend or family member to assist you.
As with anything new, it will get easier after a bit of practice. And your hearing experience will be 10X better than when you just raise and lower the volume.
2. Expecting instant improvement in your hearing
In line with number one, many new hearing aid owners think their hearing will be perfect as they walk out of the office. This assumption is usually not how it works. It usually takes up to a month for most new users to get comfortable with their new hearing aids. But don’t get discouraged. They also say it’s very worth it.
After getting home, give yourself a couple of days to get used to the new experience. It won’t be that much different than breaking in new shoes. You may need to wear it in short intervals.
Begin by just talking quietly with friends. Familiar voices might not sound the same initially, and this can be disorienting. Ask about your own voice volume and make adjustments.
Slowly increase the time you use your hearing aids and progressively add new places to visit.
You will have wonderful hearing experiences ahead of you if you can just be patient with yourself.
3. Being untruthful about your level of hearing loss at your hearing test
In order to be sure you get the right hearing aid technology, it’s crucial to answer any questions we may ask truthfully.
Go back and get another test if you realize you might not have been completely honest after you get your hearing aids. Getting it right the first time is easier. The level and kind of hearing loss will determine the hearing aid styles that work best for you.
As an illustration, individuals with hearing loss in the high frequency range will require a particular type of hearing aid. People who have mid-range hearing loss will call for different technology and etc.
4. Failing to have your hearing aid fitted
Your hearing aids need to juggle several requirements at once: They need to effectively amplify sound, they need to be simple to put in and remove, and they need to be comfortable in your ears. All three of those variables will be addressed during your fitting.
When you’re getting fitted, you might:
- Have your hearing tested to determine the power level of your hearing aid.
- Have your ears precisely measured or have molds made (or both).
5. Not tracking your results
It’s highly recommended that you take notes on how your hearing aid performs and feels once you get fitted. Make a note if you are having a hard time hearing in a big room. Make a note if one ear seems tighter than the other. Even make a note if everything feels right on. This can help us make custom, minute adjustments to help your hearing aids reach peak comfort and efficiency.
6. Not planning how you will utilize your hearing aid ahead of time
Some hearing aids are resistant to water. However, water can severely damage others. Some have advanced features you may be willing to pay more for because you enjoy certain activities.
You might ask our opinion but the choice must be yours. You won’t use your hearing aid if it doesn’t fit in with your lifestyle and only you know what features you will use.
You and your hearing aid will be together for a number of years. So if you really need certain functions, you shouldn’t settle for less.
Some other things to take into consideration
- To be very satisfied, discuss these preferences before your fitting.
- How noticeable your hearing aid is may be something you’re worried about. Or perhaps you want to wear them with style.
- Maybe you want a high degree of automation. Or perhaps you like having more control over the volume. Is a longer battery life important to you?
Throughout 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 demo out your hearing aids before you commit to a purchase. During this trial period, you’ll be able to get a sense of whether a specific brand of hearing aid would be right for you.
7. Neglecting to take sufficient care of your hearing aid
Moisture is a real issue for the majority of hearing aids. If you live in a humid place, acquiring a dehumidifier may be worth the money. It’s not a good idea to store your hearing aid in the bathroom where everyone showers.
Before you touch your hearing aid or its battery, be certain to wash your hands. Oils encountered 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 build up on the hearing aid. Instead, the manufacturer’s suggested cleaning procedures should be followed.
Taking simple actions like these will increase the life and function of your hearing aid.
8. Not getting spare batteries
Often, it’s the worst time when new hearing aid users learn this one. All of a sudden, when you’re watching your favorite show, your batteries quit just as you’re about to find out “who done it”.
Like many electronic devices, battery life fluctuates depending on how you use it and the external environment. So even if you recently changed your batteries, keep an extra set with you. Don’t allow an unpredictable battery to cause you to miss out on something important.
9. Neglecting your hearing exercises
You may assume that your hearing aids will do all of the work when you first purchase them. But the parts of your brain responsible for interpreting sound are also affected by hearing loss not just your ears.
Once you get your hearing aids, you’ll be able to start the work of rebuilding some of those ear-to-brain pathways and links. This may happen quite naturally for some individuals, particularly if the hearing loss was somewhat recent. But others will need a more focused strategy to rebuild their ability to hear. A couple of common strategies include the following.
Reading out loud
Reading out loud is one of the best ways to rebuild those connections between your ears and your brain. Even if you feel a little weird initially you should still practice like this. You’re practicing reconnecting the feeling of saying words with the sounds they make. Your hearing will get better and better as you keep practicing.
If you’re uncomfortable with the idea of reading something out loud personally, then you can always go the audiobook route. You can get a physical copy of the book and an audio copy. 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 train the language parts of your brain to hear speech again.