More than 466 million people worldwide suffer from some degree of hearing loss. Unfortunately, the likelihood of developing hearing loss increases as we age. One third of Americans over 65 experience hearing loss and the rate increases to two thirds after 75.
So, hearing aids are prevalent and costly. Once you finally get your hearing aids it is important to take good care of them.
By caring for your hearing aids and cleaning them daily, it will help keep them working properly and possibly prevent the need for repairs.
When cleaning the hearing devices, it is important to focus on three key areas — the microphone, shell and receiver.
The microphone is extremely delicate. So, use great care while cleaning. Do not poke anything into the microphone. When cleaning, turn the hearing aid upside down so the microphone port faces the floor. That way the debris will fall out of the microphone and not into it. Use a hearing aid brush and gently brush across the microphone port to sweep away any additional debris.
The shell is the surface on your hearing aid. Cleaning the shell is different for in-the-ear and behind-the-ear hearing aids. For in-the-ear devices, wax will build-up on the bends of the shell. For behind-the-ear devices, dirt and oil will build up in the grooves and edges. Wax, dirt and oil can cause your hearing aid to fall out, not fit properly, be uncomfortable in the ear, and cause issues with volume or other controls.
The receiver located in the shell of the hearing aid. It is a hole with the rubber tube around it. The tube directs the sound from the speaker to the ear. You can insert a wax pick into the opening of the receiver to scoop out any earwax built up in the hole. Be gentle when cleaning out the receiver. Too much force may cause damage to your hearing device.
Do not use a wet towel or any chemical cleaners on your hearing aid. Use a dry tissue to wipe down the device. For stubborn wax, use the hearing aid brush to pick at and sweep debris away.
Please remember that hearing aids require professional maintenance twice a year. If your hearing aids are causing feedback or static even with daily maintenance, consider contacting your audiologist for additional support and advice.
Additional Helpful Tips to Care for your Hearing Aids
- Avoid Moisture
- Store in a dry place
- Keep free of earwax
- Change the wax filter
- Handle with care
- Change batteries regularly
Caring for your hearing aids doesn’t have to be a difficult process. By cleaning your hearing aids daily, you’ll increase the longevity and production of the device. You should have your hearing checked on a regular basis and your audiologist can fix any problems.