Visiting an audiologist, getting an official hearing test, and purchasing hearing aids are all big steps in taking back control over your life. These actions demonstrate your ability to acknowledge your hearing impairment and be proactive about it.
Especially for older adults, hearing aids greatly improve quality of life and daily routine. Social activities are no longer agonizing, movies at the cinema can be more easily enjoyed, and you do not have to keep asking “What did you say?” at family gatherings. Before you enjoy these benefits of hearing aids, consider these three key things to know about hearing aids to maximize your experience.
1. Hearing aids are a constantly evolving process that requires tuning and modification. That is why it is critical to go each follow-up visit with your hearing care professional. After the initial molding and fitting, your audiologist will ask you to wear the hearing aids for some time. After this allotted time, you should come back to the audiologist to report how the hearing aids are working for you – that way the audiologist can adjust and fine-tune the hearing aids to meet your needs.
2. Success with hearing aids requires patience and trial and error. Hearing aids are a valuable investment and it is vital for you to learn how your hearing aids work. If you have spent a decent amount of time and money in the process of getting hearing aids, it is important to follow the instructions of the audiologist to maximize their use. Wear the hearing aids no matter what – it will take time to adjust to them.
3. Schedule appointments with your hearing care professional to do maintenance on the devices. Hearing aids get dirty very easily due to oil and cerumen (earwax) buildup and may require periodic maintenance by an audiologist. Earwax in a microphone or in an earpiece can damage a hearing aid and short out the device. To maximize the operation of a hearing aid, get it regularly cleaned.