In the same way that new eyeglasses or dental appliances take some getting used to, adjusting to new hearing aids is a challenge for all of my patients. Besides the shock to your brain produced by the sudden amplification and clarity of sounds when it has gotten used to muffled ones, hearing aids have additional mental and physical effects that take getting used to as well. As part of my commitment to help ease my patients through the adjustment process, I have assembled a list of need to know tips for new hearing aid users.
Getting Used to Amplified Sounds
When you hear muffled sounds that have been absent for an extended period, their intensity tends to be shocking, sometimes painful. Street noise, background conversations, the buzz of the refrigerator motor, and many other sounds when heard with greater clarity and volume can be overwhelming. However, chewing, swallowing, and hearing your own voice are often the sounds requiring the greatest adjustment. Wearing your hearing aids at home for the first several days before venturing out into the wider world is advisable. You can speed up getting used to your own voice by reading to yourself aloud.
Taking Breaks from Your Hearing Aids
Your skin, blood vessels, and delicate muscles around your ears are not used to the addition of your hearing aids. This causes the ache and soreness many people experience when first wearing hearing aids. Start by wearing your hearing aids for several hours, and then take them out and massage your ears, allowing your ears to rest for a while. After the break, put them back in and wear them a little bit longer each time until you build up to wearing them all day. Leaving them out during the night is another way to allow your body to adjust to them and reduce pain.
Regular Cleaning and Maintenance
Daily cleaning is a good practice to get into. This reduces the amount of accumulated buildup, which makes each cleaning easier. It also allows you to become more familiar with them and instantly recognize when there is any damage so you can have them repaired if necessary. Regular cleaning and maintenance keep your hearing aids performing at their best and provides your ears with a short break while you are working on them.
Although digital technology has made troubleshooting hearing aids much easier, becoming familiar with how your hearing aids work is something that takes a little bit of time and concentration. Work at becoming more familiar with how to troubleshoot common issues like:
- No Sound
- Uncomfortable Sound
- Whistling or Feedback
- Wearing Discomfort
Stay Connected with Big Thicket
Coming to your follow-up appointments is a critical part of adjusting to your new hearing aids. Not only will we evaluate the progress of your treatment, but we can also make sure that your instruments are performing as designed, make adjustments, and help with troubleshooting. One of my significant commitments to my patients relates to educating you about your hearing aids, answering your questions, and providing assurance and encouragement throughout the process. At Big Thicket Hearing Aids and Audiology, we are here to make it easier to adjust to new hearing aids. Contact us for extra help with your new hearing aids, as well as additional tips and advice to make things easier.