Hearing Aid Self-Care
Hearing aids open whole new doors for those with hearing loss. But as with any piece of valuable equipment, a little bit of daily maintenance goes a long way. To ensure optimal performance of your hearing aid, make hearing aid maintenance part of your nightly routine.
You brush your teeth, charge your electronic devices, and lock the doors. Hearing aid maintenance can be integrated seamlessly into your nightly routine as well. Start by wiping off the hearing aid with a soft cloth or brushing it gently with a soft toothbrush.
Next, inspect for wax. Brush the faceplate, which is the surface that faces out of the ear, to remove fine particles that tend to collect. The earbud component of the hearing aid tends to accumulate wax, which can clog the microphone and receiver, generating feedback and static, consequently reducing hearing quality.
Your audiologist can provide you with a wax pick and brush to facilitate this task. Your audiologist may also recommend a professional cleaning every 3 to 6 months to ensure all wax is fully cleaned out of stubborn and hard-to-clean apertures.
If wax has invaded the thin earmold tube, remove the earmold from the hearing aid and run warm water through the tubing. Alcohol-based cleaning wipes may be too caustic, so it is best to stick with water. However, be sure to not expose the hearing aid itself to water! Moisture is the enemy of your hearing aid.
Wash one earmold at a time to prevent mix-ups between corresponding earmolds to hearing aids. Once washed, the earmold can dry overnight prior to reconnection with the hearing aid. Alternately, special hearing aid dryers can perform the job more quickly if time is short.
As mentioned above, moisture is not your hearing aid’s friend. This means you should remove your hearing aid before enjoying a sauna, steam room, bath, shower, or otherwise particularly humid environment.
Heat can destroy a hearing aid, so be cautious about leaving your hearing aid near radiators or other heat sources. Cold can affect battery power, so if you find your battery affected by a cold environment, bringing it back to room temperature should restore its function.
To save battery power, open the battery door overnight. This will also ensure that fresh air can circulate around the hearing aid, allowing it to dry completely before its next use.
Within a few nights, hearing aid self-care will be easily integrated into your nighttime routine, extending the life of your hearing aid and the quality of its performance. Be sure to check on the care recommendation for your specific hearing aid as care instructions vary by model.