Hearing aids are excellent tools that can completely change the lives of those with hearing loss, allowing them to participate actively in conversations and appreciate the sounds of their surroundings. However, to guarantee they continue to function at their best, hearing aids need routine maintenance, much like any other advanced technological equipment.
This comprehensive guide will teach you the six critical things you need to know about cleaning hearing aids.
Hearing Aid Defined
But before delving into those considerations, you must know what hearing aids are and what they are used for.
A hearing aid is a small electronic device that a person wears in or behind their ear to hear clearly. Worn by those with some hearing problems, the device makes various sounds so loud that a person wearing them can listen, communicate, and participate more fully in their daily activities. This technology can help people hear well in both noisy and quiet situations.
Types Of Hearing Aids
There are many kinds of hearing aids available readily in the market, such as:
- Completely In The Canal
- In The Canal
- In The Ear
- Behind The Ear
- Receiver In Canal Or Receiver In The Ear
- Open Fit
Advantages Of Wearing Hearing Aids
There are numerous, considerably many advantages of wearing hearing aids. Hearing aids, first and foremost, significantly enhance a person’s capacity for communication, allowing them to participate hassle-free in discussions and social interactions. As a result, their affiliations and social connections bloom, they feel more confident, and they experience less loneliness or exclusion.
By making it possible for people to appreciate the sounds of their surroundings, including ordinary conversations, music, and bird songs, hearing aids also help people live healthier lives. Besides, enhanced hearing further increases safety awareness in people since they can more easily pick up on crucial aural cues such as alarms and approaching vehicles.
6 Important Things to Know About Hearing Aid Maintenance
1. Ensure 100% Hygiene
Hygiene maintenance is integral to your hearing aids optimal performance and longevity. Debris and other ear build-up gathered in the device can clog the microphone and receiver ports. Therefore, it is vital to clean your hearing aids regularly, which can be done by employing the following measures:
- Take a soft, dry cloth to clean the exterior of the device.
- Clean the debris from microphone and receiver openings using a light brush subtly.
- Do not use water or cleaning solutions unless recommended by your audiologist.
- Keep an eye on the wax filter and replace it as soon as needed, typically every one to three months.
2. Keep Your Hearing Aid Intact from Moisture
Due to their sensitivity to moisture, hearing aids must always be kept dry. Before taking a shower, swimming, or applying hair products, grab your hearing aids out. To get rid of any moisture that collects inside the device overnight, consider using a hearing aid dehumidifier or a drying kit. Take additional care since moisture can harm your hearing aid’s delicate parts.
3. Handle with Care
Handle your hearing aids carefully at all times because they are sensitive devices. To prevent any unintentional drops, place your hearing aids during insertion or removal over a soft surface like a bed or couch. Avoid subjecting your hearing aids to conditions that could harm them, such as high or low temperatures, direct sunlight, or pressure. When not in use, keep your hearing aids in their case to guard against loss or damage.
4. Frequent Check-Ups with Your Audiologist
The effectiveness of your hearing aids must be maintained through regular check-ups with your audiologist. They can:
• Change the settings to suit your changing hearing requirements.
• Swap out worn-out components.
• Verify that your hearing aids are fitted correctly.
Maintaining your hearing aids regularly will help them last longer and provide you with the greatest hearing experience possible.
5. Be Conscious of Battery Life
Monitoring hearing aid batteries is essential. To ensure that you never go without hearing aids, always have extra batteries on hand. To increase battery life while replacing batteries, clean the battery connections and give the hearing aid time to air out. Another choice is rechargeable hearing aids, which must be charged frequently to guarantee continuous usage.
6. Protect Your Hearing Aids from Pets and Children
Children and animals can be curious about your hearing aids and may inadvertently break them. When not in use, be cautious where you store your hearing aids, and make sure your family members know the significance of not handling them. Use a protective case that can be kept out of the way.
How To Clean Hearing Aids?
Cleaning your hearing aids is essential to keeping them in good working order and extending their lifespan. Here is a detailed instruction manual for cleaning hearing aids:
1. Collect Your Cleaning Supplies
Before you start, ensure you have all the essential supplies at hand, such as soft and dry cloth or tissue, your hearing aid cleaning brush, wax pick tool, cleaning wipes, and wax guards.
2. Wash Your Hands
Wash your hands to inhibit transferring dirt and oils to your hearing device.
3. Turn Off Your Hearing Aids
If your hearing aids have an on/off switch, turn them off before cleaning to avoid accidental damage or settings changes.
4. Remove Earwax and Debris
Clean your hearing aid’s microphone and receiver carefully using a soft brush.
5. Check the Wax Filters
Some hearing aids feature filters or disposable wax shields that should be changed regularly (often every 1-3 months). If your hearing aids have them, remove and replace them as necessary by following the manufacturer’s suggestions.
6. Wipe the Hearing Aids
To gently wipe the surface of your hearing aids, use a soft, dry cloth or a hearing aid cleaning wipe. Use the gadget gently and refrain from using any liquids because too much moisture can harm it.
7. Clean the Ear Molds or Tips
Remove replaceable tips or custom ear molds from your hearing aids and clean them separately. They can be thoroughly rinsed off and washed in warm, soapy water. Before reconnecting them to the hearing aids, ensure they are completely dry.
If you see tubing in your hearing aids, something prevalent in behind-the-ear styles, look for any blockages and remove them using a soft and thin wire given with your hearing aids. Additionally, you must store them in a protective case when you’re not using them. Doing so will prevent your device from getting damaged by moisture, dust, or physical harm.
What To Do When Hearing Aids Get Wet?
It’s critical to take immediate action if a hearing aid becomes wet to avoid harm. Before carefully patting dry the device with a soft towel or tissue, switch them off and remove the batteries. Remove and dry any removable components, such as filters or wax guards, from your hearing aids. To make drying easier, pull the covers from any ports or accessible compartments.
To effectively eliminate moisture, place the hearing aids in a drying kit or hearing aid dehumidifier for at least 24 hours. Don’t dry things using heat sources. Reinstall the batteries and test your hearing aids for functionality after thorough drying, but also arrange for a professional examination to be sure no long-term harm has been done. Consider using protective gear to avoid further exposure to water.
Precisely, Hearing aids are one of the most essential assistive devices in the lives of those who have hearing impairment. Regular maintenance is the key to maximise the lifespan and functionality of your hearing aids.
Thus, frequent cleaning, protection from moisture, gentle handling, professional check-ups, battery care, and safeguarding against curious pets and children are all crucial aspects of hearing aid maintenance.
In addition, if you’re looking for ways on how to clean your hearing aids, then start with gathering your cleaning supplies, washing your hands, turning off your hearing aid, and removing all the ear wax and build-up from it slowly. Later, check the wax filters and clean any ear molds or tips. Finally, inspect the tubing (if applicable), store your hearing aids in their box, and don’t forget to schedule regular hearing check-ups with your audiologist.
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