Irritation Soreness And Discomfort
A badly fitted hearing aid can be extremely uncomfortable to wear. If your digital hearing aid is too tight, it may cause skin irritation, soreness, and general discomfort and if it is too loose, it can slip or slide. Bad fitting can interfere with the sounds you hear and create more feedback. Make sure to put your hearing aid in carefully and properly. If the problem is with the device, you should turn to your audiologist for adjustment.
What Are The Signs Of Hearing Loss
You may notice a number of early warning signs and changes in your behavior that may be related to hearing loss. You may begin to:
- Complain that people are mumbling or speaking too softly
- Frequently ask people to repeat what they have said especially in noisy situations
- Prefer the television or radio louder than other people
- Have difficulty understanding on the telephone
- Not understand all the dialogue at the movies or during live theater productions
- Have difficulty understanding at your house of worship or other public gatherings
- Find yourself more impatient, irritable, frustrated or withdrawn than before
- Have trouble understanding people when you cannot see their faces
- Strain to hear conversations, especially when in a group setting
Why Its Important To Wear Your Hearing Aids All Day
Many people wear their hearing aids only when they go out to dinner, or for certain events or occasions. But its important for your brain to receive a wide variety of sounds all day long. Heres why.
I only wear my hearing aids when I go out to dinner.
A new patient told me this recently, and its a phrase I hear too often when I meet with hearing aid users. I try to educate my patients that it is important to wear your hearing aids all day because it gives the brain a foundation of sound in all the environments you live in. The quiet environments are not silent, and the brain will become accustomed to this sound input . Having this foundation of sound prepares the brain and provides a good basis to transition into more complicated sounds.
Helps To Hear In Noisier Environments
Being able to hear all the words in the conversation in noisier places is what people look for most from their hearing devices. By wearing your hearing devices all day, you will be rewarded with maximum benefit when you have conversations in more complicated listening settings, whether it is in a restaurant, the car, or a party full of people.
Use It Or Lose It
Prevent Early Onset of Dementia
Make It A Morning Habit
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Hear And Understand Medical Advice
The ability to properly hear, remember, and follow the advice of your doctor is key to your long-term health. For example, by some estimates, the US spends $100 billion each year on preventable hospitalizations due to a failure to properly take medications. Hearing loss not only makes it hard for you to hear the medical advice of your doctor, but it makes it harder to remember it as well. If youre struggling to hear whats being said, your brain is working overtime, which makes it harder for you to process and remember the information youre trying to hear.
On the other hand, according to one study, people with hearing loss who wore hearing aids for a period of two weeks, improved their mental processing and memory. Because the participants in the study could hear better, they were using less brain power trying to hear, which freed up their mental processes and made it easier for them to process and remember information.
If you wear your hearing aids all the time, you lower the stress on your brain to understand whats being said around you, which helps you remember everything better, including vital medical advice.
How Can I Find Out If I Need A Hearing Aid
If you think you might have hearing loss and could benefit from a hearing aid, visit your physician, who may refer you to an otolaryngologist or audiologist. An otolaryngologist is a physician who specializes in ear, nose, and throat disorders and will investigate the cause of the hearing loss. An audiologist is a hearing health professional who identifies and measures hearing loss and will perform a hearing test to assess the type and degree of loss.
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Do I Need One Or Two Hearing Aids
If hearing loss exists in both ears, there is greater benefit in using a device in each ear similar to wearing eyeglasses with two lenses. There are always exceptions to the general rule and that will be discussed with your audiologist. Benefits from hearing aids in each ear include:
- Improved ability to understand speech in background noise
- Less amplification in each hearing aid reducing the possibility of feedback
- Less auditory effort so you are less fatigued at the end of the day
- Improved ability to locate the source of sound
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 01/01/2019.
- Hearing Loss Association of America. Accessed 9/2/2018.How Can I Tell If I Have a Hearing Loss?
- National Institutes on Health. . Accessed 7/1/2020.NIH Fact Sheet: Hearing Aids
- National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders.. Accessed 9/2/2018. Assistive Devices for People with Hearing, Voice, Speech or Language Disorders
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They Can Give You A Headache
Number five is because they can give you a headache.
And that is because when you have all these sound amplified and you have to work extra hard to listen to the right sound.
Then youre concentrating even more and you get concentration fatigue and you become really exhausted.
When you wear it all day and the sounds are all amplified, and you still have to work hard to listen to the right sound.
So, for example, people are speaking, but there are other noises around it. Then you still have to work extra hard to focus on that person. You get concentration fatigue, you get tired, you get a headache.
And even if its not a noisy background, still the way we hear peoplespeak, its different. And you still have to listen extra hard to hear people because the sound of how they speak and it is amplified.
But its still not really clear as such.
So as a result, I just get very tired and it just so exhausting.
And you give up, you take it off and sometimes it just nicer that way.
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What’s Your Return Policy
Make sure you have at least 30 dayseven more time is betterto return a hearing aid for a full refund.
Most people have been walking around with hearing loss for years, so their brain is tuned to their hearing loss and thinks thats normal, Palmer says.
To get a new normal, wear the new hearing aids full-time for several weeks, which will expose your brain to low-level sounds you havent heard for a while. After about three weeks, see the audiologist for fine-tuning.
How Often Should You Wear Your Hearing Aids
Since the start of the pandemic, most of us have spent the majority of our time at home. In the peace of your own house, you may feel that it is unnecessary to wear your hearing aids throughout the day. However, audiologists warn against going long periods without wearing your devices. In fact, you should wear them every day during all waking hours, no matter where or how you spend your time.
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Avoid Getting The Hearing Aids Wet
Hearing aids are so much more water-resistant than they used to be but water is still an enemy of electronics. I tell my patients that if it is raining outside and you are just walking from your car into a store the hearing aids are going to be fine and you can keep them on.
If you plan to be outside in the rain for a while such as when you are golfing, working in the yard or watching a football game you should take the hearing aids off or protect them from the water.
You can protect hearing aids from getting wet by wearing some kind of brimmed hat. Even have it extend past the ears by a half-inch will keep the hearing aids safe.
Another option to keep the hearing aids completely safe from water is to use Eargear . It is essentially a waterproof, dustproof sock that goes over the hearing aids. Many patients who do not ever want to take their hearing aids off find that Eargear cuts out any worry of having moisture-related repair issues.
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Top 10 Dos And Donts Of Wearing Hearing Aids
Now, lets talk about these recommendations in a little more detail.
1. ; ; ; ; Dont let hairspray get into your the hearing aids. It will gum them up. So dont apply hairspray with your hearing aids on, and be sure to wait for the hairspray to dry before you put your hearing aids on.
2.;;;;;;;Keep hearing aids away from dogs. Patients often bring me hearing aids that their family pet has chewed on. To avoid this, when you take your hearing aids off, put them high up and in a safe place. If youre using a telephone and you lay the hearing aid down on a low table, the dog is likely to hear the sound of the aid and put it in its mouth to see if it tastes as good as it smells. Damage done by a dog is not covered by hearing aid insurance and warrantees because it falls under the category of negligence.
4.;;;;;;;Keep your hearing aids away from all types of water. Do not wear them in a bath, shower, or while swimming.
5.;;;;;;;You must turn your hearing aid off when you are not using it. If you dont, the battery will wear out quickly. Open the battery compartment of the hearing aid to turn the instrument off. Note: Disregard this advice if you are using a hearing aid charging box. Most of these boxes turn the hearing aids off for you.
8.;;;;;;;;There are many different ways to use hearing aid with telephones.;The simplest way is to place the telephone on top of the hearing aid when you are using the phone.
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Why You Should Use Your Hearing Aids Consistently
I only need to wear my hearing aids when I go out is one of the worst things you can think or do for yourself once you have made the decision to wear hearing aids.
The majority of our hearing is done in the brain and not with our ears, this is why it is so important to consistently expose the brain to sound through the use of hearing aids. Yes, that is correctthe majority of our hearing is done in the brain. The ears pick up sound and deliver it to the brain. When hearing loss is present the brain is deprived of sound at a normal level . This becomes normal hearing to the person with hearing loss but it is not normal hearing. The brain needs to be consistently exposed to sounds at normal levels to put them into different categories as it once did. We are retraining the brain to hear again at a normal level. Unfortunately, you will never hear as well as you did when you were a teenager and the hearing loss cannot be cured but the hearing will be significantly improved.
Over 130 million;Americans qualify for;low prices on hearing;aids through TruHearing.;Are you one of them?
What Benefits Can I Get By Wearing Hearing Aids All Day Long
As I wrote earlier, auditory deprivation is a serious problem that significantly reduces the effectiveness of hearing aids. Many parts of the brain work on a use it-or-lose it basis. Therefore, if you stop halfway and stop using your hearing aids, it will weaken your ability to process sound signals. You have to feed the auditory system of the brain with sound. Otherwise, your hearing system might atrophy. How can you avoid this? You should use your hearing aids full-time.
The main advantage of frequent use of hearing aids is the ability to better adapt to the sound. You are used to hearing gradually weakening over the years. Therefore, some sounds may seem unpleasant to you at first. Wearing hearing aids all day brings back the joy of sounds such as birds singing, footsteps, or raindrops. The music will sound better. And you will begin to recognize your voice.
Using hearing aids full-time is also beneficial for the elderly. A variety of ways to stimulate the brain improves mental health. Many older people are reluctant to use hearing aids and believe that their hearing is normal. As hearing decreases, certain parts of the brain begin to function worse. When using hearing aids, brain activity is stimulated and maintained. It improves the ability of older people to communicate and interact with the outside world. It also helps prevent the development of dementia.
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Hearing Aids Can Cause Ear Wax Build Up
Yes, you probably guessed it from the last paragraph, putting hearing aids in your ears can also affect the ear wax migratory process. So, unfortunately, in many cases, hearing aids go right along with ear wax build-up. That’s why many hearing healthcare professionals offer their Patients ear wax removal as part of their package when they buy hearing aids.
What Questions Should I Ask Before Buying A Hearing Aid
Before you buy a hearing aid, ask your audiologist these important questions:
- What features would be most useful to me?
- What is the total cost of the hearing aid? Do the benefits of newer technologies outweigh the higher costs?
- Is there a trial period to test the hearing aids? What fees are nonrefundable if the aids are returned after the trial period?
- How long is the warranty? Can it be extended? Does the warranty cover future maintenance and repairs?
- Can the audiologist make adjustments and provide servicing and minor repairs? Will loaner aids be provided when repairs are needed?
- What instruction does the audiologist provide?
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Hearing Loss Is Always Present
Hearing loss is ALWAYS present no matter what listening situation one is in. If a hearing aid wearer only wears his or her hearing aids occasionally then the brain has no idea what to do with all the noise and stimuli introduced in noisy environments. This can be overwhelming and cause someone to reject his or her hearing aids because all they hear is noise.
Hearing aids are not human; they dont know who or what you want to listen to. But, wearing hearing aids consistently will eliminate the over-stimulation and allow sounds to become more natural.
Note:;This transition and adaptation period does not happen overnight. The more consistently hearing aids are worn the faster and easier one will adapt and be able to focus more on listening to speech rather than being overwhelmed with background noise.
Wind Noise Can Be Very Annoying
Hearing the wind blow across the microphones of your hearing aids can be very problematic. So it is your choice to wear the hearing aids or just pull them off.
Things like driving in the car with the window open can be intolerable so you can be the judge whether to wear your hearing aids in the wind or not. If you are in the wind often, shield your hearing aids from the wind using Eargear that was mentioned above.
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Are New Types Of Aids Available
Although they work differently than the hearing aids described above, implantable hearing aids are designed to help increase the transmission of sound vibrations entering the inner ear. A middle ear implant is a small device attached to one of the bones of the middle ear. Rather than amplifying the sound traveling to the eardrum, an MEI moves these bones directly. Both techniques have the net result of strengthening sound vibrations entering the inner ear so that they can be detected by individuals with sensorineural hearing loss.
A bone-anchored hearing aid is a small device that attaches to the bone behind the ear. The device transmits sound vibrations directly to the inner ear through the skull, bypassing the middle ear. BAHAs are generally used by individuals with middle ear problems or deafness in one ear. Because surgery is required to implant either of these devices, many hearing specialists feel that the benefits may not outweigh the risks.
What Can I Expect From My Hearing Aids
Unlike eyeglasses, hearing aids do not correct your hearing back to normal. Instead, hearing aids function to amplify sounds in a particular range of pitches the range where the hearing loss exists. Included in those sounds can be speech or environment sounds such as bells ringing, birds singing, conversations from nearby tables at a restaurant or busy traffic noise.
While the hearing aid technology today is excellent, the devices are still an aid and cannot separate the desired speech signal from the background noise as well as our brain and two normal functioning ears can. Therefore, it is important to employ communication strategies when using hearing aids in difficult listening environments.
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