Have you ever had your internet disappear just as you’re almost to the best part of your favorite Netflix movie? You sit there and watch that spinning circle instead of finding out who won that cooking competition. And so you just wait. Is it your internet provider, modem, router, or maybe it will simply come back on its own? It kind of stinks.
Technology can be tremendously frustrating when it doesn’t work properly. Your hearing aids certainly fall into this category. Most of the time, your hearing aids will provide you with the means to remain connected to loved ones, have conversations with co-workers, and keep up with your neighbors.
But when they stop working, your hearing loss symptoms can abruptly become a lot more frustrating. You’ve been disappointed by the technology you depend on. How do hearing aids just quit working? So what can you do? Here are the three common ways your hearing aids can fail and how to diagnose and identify them.
Hearing aids can often have three common issues
Hearing aids are sophisticated devices. Even still, there are some common issues that individuals with hearing aids may experience. Let’s take a look at possible causes of these issues and potential fixes.
Whistling and feedback
So, maybe you’re trying to have a chat with your family or watch your favorite television show and you start to notice a horrific whistling noise. Or perhaps you notice some feedback. You begin to think, “this is weird, what’s up with this whistling”?
Here are three possible problems that could be causing this whistling and feedback:
- The tubing that attaches the hearing aid with the earmold, on behind-the-ear models, can occasionally become compromised. Have a close look to see if the tube might have detached or might be damaged somehow.
- You might not have your hearing aids correctly positioned in your ears. Try taking them out and putting them back in. If the fit isn’t correct you might need to come in so we can help you get a better fit.
- The functionality of your hearing aid can be impacted by earwax buildup in your ear canal. You’ll notice this comes up fairly regularly. That includes causing your hearing aids to whistle or feedback. You can attempt to clean some of the earwax out (never use a cotton swab) and if that fails, you can get some help from us.
If these issues aren’t easily resolved, it’s worth talking to us about adjusting the fit or sending your device in for maintenance (depending on what we determine the root cause of that whistling or feedback might be).
Hearing aids not producing sound
Your hearing aids are supposed to make, well, sound. That’s what they’re made to do! So if you find yourself thinking, “I don’t hear any sound coming from my hearing aid,” well, then something is certainly wrong. So what could cause hearing aids to lose all sound? Here are some things to watch for:
- Earwax buildup: Here we go again with the earwax! Examine your device for indications of earwax on the microphone or speakers or any sensitive bits. You want to be sure the device is good and clean.
- Batteries: If you have rechargeable batteries, make sure that they are completely charged. And whether your batteries are rechargeable or not, it may be worth switching them out for fresh ones.
- Power: Everybody forgets to turn their hearing aids on once in a while. Check for this first. Then you can cross that of the list of potential issues.
- Your settings: If you have them, flip through your custom settings. It’s possible your hearing devices are not on the right custom program (so maybe your hearing aids think you’re in a concert hall instead of at the kitchen table). The sound you’re hearing might be off as a result.
If these steps don’t help with your problems, we may have the answers. Whether repair, maintenance, or replacement is your next step, we will be able to help you figure that out.
Your ears hurt while you’re wearing your hearing aids
What if your hearing aids work perfectly, but whenever you put them in your ears, your ears start aching? And you’re likely thinking: why do my ears ache when I use my hearing aids? This sort of discomfort is not exactly conducive to using your hearing aids over the long term. So, why do they hurt?
- Fit: The fit of the device is the most evident problem. Naturally, when the fit is nice and snug, your hearing aids will work best. Which means that there can occasionally be discomfort involved in a poor fit. Many hearing aids can be personalized to your particular ears. The better the fit, the fewer issues you’ll have with discomfort over the long run. If you come see us, we can help you achieve the best fit for your device.
- Time: Getting used to your hearing aids will take a little while. How long will depend on the person. It’s worth talking about when you buy your hearing aids so you have a realistic idea of how long it may take you to become comfortable with your devices. Also, speak with us about any discomfort you may be having.
Avoid problems with a little test drive
Before you commit to a set of hearing aids, it’s a smart plan to test them for a while. Most of the time we will have loaner pairs for you to try out before you make a decision.
As a matter of fact, we can help you identify the best kind of hearing aid for your requirements, adjust the fit to match your ears, and help you handle any ongoing issues you may have with your devices. We will be your resource for any assistance you need.
And that’s a lot more than you will get from an over-the-counter hearing aid!