Congratulations! You’ve just become the proud owner of hearing aids – a great piece of modern tech. But new hearing aid owners will wish somebody had told them certain things, as with any new technology.
Let’s go over nine typical mistakes new hearing aid owners make and how you can steer clear of them.
1. Failing to comprehend hearing aid functionality
To put it bluntly, learn your hearing aid’s functions. The hearing experience will be significantly enhanced if you know how to use advanced features for different environments like on the street, at the movies, or in a restaurant.
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 fail to 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.
To get the clearest and best sound quality, take some time to practice using the hearing aid in different settings. 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 little practice. Simply turning the volume up and down won’t even come close to giving you the hearing experience that using these more advanced features will.
2. Expecting instant improvement in your hearing
In line with number one, many new hearing aid users think their hearing will be perfect as they leave the office. This assumption is normally not how it works. It typically takes up to a month for most new users to get comfortable with their new hearing aids. But stay positive. They also say it’s very worth it.
After getting home, give yourself a couple of days to get used to the new situation. 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.
Start in a quiet setting with a friend where you are only talking. Simple voices may not sound the same initially, and this can be disorienting. Ask your friends if you’re speaking too loud and make the necessary adjustments.
Slowly start to go to new places and use the hearing aid for more extended periods of time.
You will have wonderful hearing experiences ahead of you if you can only be patient with yourself.
3. Being untruthful about your level of hearing loss at your hearing assessment
In order to be sure you get the correct hearing aid technology, it’s important to answer any questions we may ask honestly.
If you have your hearing aid and realize that perhaps you weren’t as honest as you might have been, come back and get retested. Getting it right the first time is better. The hearing aid type and style that will be ideal for you will be determined by the degree and kind of hearing loss you have.
For instance, certain hearing aids are better for people with hearing loss in the high-frequency range. Others will be better for people with mid-frequency hearing loss and so on.
4. Not getting a hearing aid fitting
Your hearing aids need to juggle a few requirements at the same time: 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. Your hearing aid fitting is meant to correctly calibrate all three of those variables for your personal needs.
During hearing aid fitting sessions, you may:
- Do hearing tests to adjust the correct power for your hearing aid.
- Have your ears precisely measured or have molds made (or both).
5. Not tracking your results
Once you’ve been fitted, it’s important to take notes on how your hearing aid feels and performs. Make a note if you are having a hard time hearing in a large room. If your right ear feels tighter than your left, make a note of that. Even note if everything feels right on. With this knowledge, we can personalize the settings of your hearing aid so it works at peak efficiency and comfort.
6. Not thinking about how you will use your hearing aid in advance
Some hearing aids are resistant to water. Others, however, can be damaged or even ruined by water. Perhaps you enjoy certain activities and you are willing to pay extra for more sophisticated features.
You can ask our opinion but the decision must be yours. Only you know what 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 wear them.
You’ll be using your hearing aid for quite a while. So you don’t want to be disappointed by settling when you really would have benefited from a certain feature.
Some other things to consider
- How obvious your hearing aid is might be something you’re worried about. Or, you might want to make a bold statement.
- Maybe you want a high level of automation. Or maybe you like having more control over the volume. Is a longer battery life important to you?
- To be very satisfied, discuss these preferences before your fitting.
Throughout the fitting process we can address many of the challenges 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 test period, you’ll be able to get a sense of whether a specific brand of hearing aid would be right for you.
7. Failing to take sufficient care of your hearing aid
The majority of hearing aids are quite sensitive to moisture. You might want to invest in a dehumidifier if you live in an extremely humid place. Keeping your hearing aid in the bathroom where people take baths or showers may not be the best idea.
Consistently wash your hands before handling the hearing aid or batteries. The life of your hearing aid and the duration of its battery can be effected by the oils normally found in your skin.
The hearing aid shouldn’t be allowed to accumulate earwax and skin cells. Instead, clean it based on the manufacturer’s guidelines.
Taking simple actions like these will increase the life and function of your hearing aid.
8. Not having spare batteries
New hearing aid wearers frequently learn this concept at the worst times. All of a sudden, while you’re watching your favorite show, your batteries quit just as you’re about to find out “who done it”.
Your battery life depends, like any electronic device, on the outside environment and how you use it. So always keep a spare set of batteries handy, even if you just replaced them. Don’t let an unpredictable battery cause you to miss out on something significant.
9. Neglecting your hearing exercises
When you first get your hearing aids, there might be a presumption, and it’s not necessarily a baseless assumption, that your hearing aid will do all the heavy lifting. But it’s not only your ears that are impacted by hearing loss, it’s also the regions of your brain in charge of interpreting all those sounds.
Once you’ve got your hearing aids, you’ll be able to begin the work of rebuilding some of those ear-to-brain pathways and connections. This might happen quite naturally for some individuals, especially if the hearing loss was rather recent. But for other people, a deliberate approach may be necessary to get your hearing firing on all cylinders again. The following are a couple of prevalent strategies.
Reading out loud
One of the best ways you can restore those connections between your ears and your brain is to spend some time reading out loud. It might feel a little silly at first, but don’t allow that to stop you. You’re doing the important work of connecting the words (which you read) to the sound (which you say). Your hearing will get better and better as you continue practicing.
If you don’t like the idea of reading something out loud yourself, then you can always try audiobooks. You can get a physical copy of the book and an audio copy. Then as the audiobook plays, you can read along. This does the same job as reading something out loud, you hear words while reading them. And that helps the hearing-and-language region of your brain get accustomed to hearing (and understanding) speech again.