Congratulations—you’re prepared to join the millions of Americans who have learned how wearing hearing aids can make life much more enjoyable and fulfilling. In the near future, you’ll be hearing sounds you’ve long forgotten about, participating in stimulating discussions, and listening to music with improved perceptiveness for each instrument.
But before you get to all that, you’ll have to proceed through a quick phase of adjustment to get comfortable with your new hearing aids. Here are five suggestions to help you push through this stage and to help you get the most out of your new technology.
1. Consult a Hearing Care Professional
If you are looking for the best hearing possible, there’s no way around the initial step, which is visiting a hearing care professional. They can help you find the most appropriate hearing aid that corresponds with your hearing loss, lifestyle, and financial position. And, even more importantly, they can custom-fit and program your new hearing aid so that it’s fine tuned for your unique hearing loss.
Your hearing loss, like a fingerprint, is unique. As a result, every hearing aid should always be programmed differently—and this requires the expertise of a hearing care professional.
2. Give Your Hearing Aids a Chance
Your new hearing aids will take time to get used to. You’ll detect sounds you haven’t heard in some time, your voice may sound unusual, and sound might overall just seem “off.” This is completely ordinary: you simply need time to adapt.
Start by making a commitment to wear your hearing aids for as much of the day as possible, for at a minimum a few weeks. Put them in when you get up in the morning and take them out before bed. While it may be awkward initially, you’ll get used to better hearing in no time—and it will be well worth the hard work.
If you discover that you’re having difficulties adjusting, set up an appointment with your hearing care professional. Hearing aids can be fine-tuned, so you never have to throw in the towel on better hearing.
3. Start Small at Home
We suggest adapting to your hearing aids initially in the comfort of your home. Attempt watching a movie or TV show and paying particular attention to the conversation; engage in one-on-one conversations in a quiet space; and listen to music while trying to pick out a variety of instruments and pitches.
Then, when you’re more comfortable, you can try your hearing aids out in more challenging surroundings like at social gatherings, restaurants, and movie theaters. Modern hearing aids have advanced features and environmental settings that can easily handle these increased listening demands—which segues perfectly to the fourth tip.
4. Learn the Advanced Features
After you’ve adjusted to your hearing aids, you should continue to learn a few of the more sophisticated features. With the help of your hearing specialist, you can learn how to make best use of the functionality and convenience of your modern hearing aids.
Depending on your chosen model, you’ll be able to do things like wirelessly stream music and phone calls directly to your hearing aids, manipulate the volume from your mobile device or digital watch, and effortlessly switch settings to optimize your hearing in different environments. Make sure to talk to your hearing specialist about all the features that may be helpful to you.
5. Maintain Your Hearing Aids
Last, you’ll want to ensure that you care for your hearing aids. This means daily cleaning, appropriate storage, and managing your battery supply. Your hearing professional will help you integrate hearing aid maintenance and care into your daily routine so that it becomes automatic and effortless.
You’ll also want to get your hearing aids professionally cleaned and examined one or two times annually to ensure proper functioning for years to come.
We’d love to hear from you: if you presently have hearing aids, tell us about your experience! Let us know how you adjusted to your hearing aids and any recommendations you’d give to those just starting out.