At our hearing care clinic, my colleagues and I have a key message we convey to every patient who receives a hearing aid for the first time. Our message is it takes time to get used to using a hearing aid. Often, we compare getting your first hearing aid to getting new braces or new glasses. Although they may feel a bit uncomfortable at first, the discomfort goes away after a period of adjustment.
The big advantage of getting hearing aids from audiologists is we provide a high level of aftercare to help you adjust. Our patients never have to go it alone. Unfortunately, trying to figure out hearing aid problems on your own is the experience of people who purchase hearing aids off the shelf.
We’re sharing ways to troubleshoot the most common hearing aid problems to educate the community outside of our clinic.
#1 No Sound
It takes time to master putting on your hearing aid properly. It’s not unusual for a new user to accidentally turn off the hearing aid while putting it on. That’s why we tell our patients to check to see if the device is on when there’s no sound. If the power is on, it could be the volume has inadvertently been turned down. To avoid these problems, we advise new users to put their devices on in front of a mirror.
If there’s still no sound, it could be time to replace a depleted battery with a fresh one. Also, debris in the receiver or the microphone could explain why there’s no sound. Try gently cleaning the microphone and receiver in the way you were shown by your audiologist. Most devices come with cleaning tools. They are the only tools that are appropriate for your hearing aid.
#2 Uncomfortable Sounds
New hearing aid users frequently report that background noises and their own voices sound too loud. Those are common problems because of the way hearing works. Although our ears receive sound, our brains have to interpret sound for us. Our brains need time to adjust to receiving sound through the device.
The good news is your actions can make the adjustment process go more smoothly. Reading aloud to yourself should improve your experience of hearing your own voice. It’s also important to follow your audiologist’s instructions for how long you should wear your hearing aids each day. Wearing your hearing aid every day is necessary for successful adjustment.
#3 Whistling and Feedback Issues
Whistling and other loud feedback sounds can be painful. Fortunately, resolving feedback issues is often as easy as taking the hearing aid out and putting it back in. If you still hear feedback noises, turning the volume down frequently resolves the problem.
#4 Uncomfortable Fit
It’s normal for your ear to feel different when you begin using a hearing aid. Wearing your device regularly should help you get used to how it feels. The sensation usually goes away with time. Hearing aids are not supposed to be painful. Removing the hearing aid and returning it should eliminate pain from improper placement.
San Antonio’s Leading Doctors of Audiology
If these tips do not resolve your problem, we’re available to assist you. Call us to schedule an appointment.