Guide For Hearing Aid Users
- When inserting the hearing aids into your ears, always remember that red is for the right ear and blue is for the left ear.
- At first, your brain will need to re-identify what is important to you. Certain sounds that will be somewhat overwhelming include footsteps, water running, newspapers and the banging of pots and pans.
- If the hearing aids are too overwhelming, wear the aids in more quiet or easy listening environments in the beginning to give yourself time to adjust.
- It is normal for your voice or the physical fit of the hearing aids to be unusually noticeable to you. It will become more comfortable as you continue to wear the hearing aids.
- To better adapt to the hearing aids, you could read your favorite book out loud.
- You may experience whistling when you insert the hearing aid in your ear, put your hand over the aid, or hug someone. It should not happen if it is placed in your ear properly.
- If any squealing occurs while you are on the phone, you may want to tilt the phone slightly away from your face. If you have a hearing aid that fits behind the ear, place the phone further back towards the top of your ear where the microphone of the hearing aid is located. You may need to experiment with the proper placement of the phone while wearing your hearing aid.
- Use a Kleenex or hearing aid brush to routinely clean your hearing aid. For a more thorough cleaning, check out our videos for further instruction.
- Make sure that you remove your aids when you wash your face, take a shower, go swimming or are caught in heavy rain. Hearing aids may be water-resistant but should not be immersed in any liquid.
- Do not use aerosol spray (hair sprays, etc.) on your hair with the aids in your ears. The spray may discolor the plastic and/or plug the microphone.
- Do not expose your hearing aids to excessive heat (above 120°F), such as the oven, microwave or leave them in your car during the summer.
BENEFITS OF WEARING HEARING AIDS
Being proactive about your hearing difficulty and seeking treatment sooner than later has been shown to be key in a successful outcome with hearing aids. Roughly only one third of individuals with hearing loss take action to improve their hearing difficulty. Delaying treatment will negatively affect the outcome of your hearing aids making the experience that much more challenging. However, once you purchase your hearing aids, you can begin the journey to enhance your hearing and facilitate many aspects of your life.
Similarly, to how often you wear prescription glasses, your hearing will only improve if you wear your hearing aids the entire day. Consistent use of amplification will allow you to fully adapt to your new way of hearing and reopen many doors that may have closed over the years. Once you have reached a daily routine such improvements with your hearing aids could include:
- Enjoying engaged conversations with others
- Improving brain function and working memory
- Boosting energy, attention and reduce listening effort
- Feeling safer while you are home alone or out and about during your daily activities
- Listening to others and improving relationships with family members and loved ones
Beyond The Hearing Aids
Aural Rehabilitation can be very useful when beginning the process of using amplification. It emphasizes the importance of becoming assertive and advocating for your hearing impairment. It looks beyond the hearing aid and focuses on the individual with the hearing loss. By becoming more aware of effective communication strategies and optimal listening environments, you will discover the most beneficial way to communicate with others and take advantage of your new devices.
Effective Communication Strategies
1. Use your eyes as much as possible.
- You can tell a lot by looking at someone's face. It is always best to rely on both visual and auditory cues to help you hear better.
2. Set the Environment
- Make sure that there is good lighting to see the speaker’s face, gestures and body language.
- Lower or eliminate any background noise.
- While in a group setting, make sure you position yourself in the center or at least where you able to see everyone’s face in the conversation.
3. Repair Communication with Others
- Before starting a conversation, ask others to inform you of the topic or to get your attention before speaking.
- When you are not able to follow the conversation, repeat what you did understand and ask the speaker to rephrase what was already said.
- When others are speaking to you it will be more helpful that they speak slowly and slightly louder than normal rather than exaggerating their speech or yelling.
- It is okay if you do not understand every single word that is being said. It is more important to be able to follow conversations.