5 Tips for Hearing Aid Success

"It's not like my glasses,” one of my patients once said to me. “I put my glasses on and I can see.”

This patient was seven years old and despite years of experience, I’ve yet to hear a better way to describe the difficulty that comes with a new pair of hearing aids.

Hearing aids are a huge aid in helping people reduce listening fatigue, reclaim their social life, and reduce the potentially dangerous side effects of hearing loss. At the same time, there is undoubtedly an adjustment period when using your first pair. 

If you’ve just gotten your first pair, read on to get the advice I usually share with first-time patients using hearing aids.

Be Patient With Yourself

It’s really common to see people getting frustrated. Like I mentioned earlier, there is an adjustment period for hearing aids as the brain takes some time to get used to the way it perceives sounds through the devices. 

It’s sort of like a new pair of shoes. At first, when you wear them, they’re tight, and they might cause blisters from time to time. But keep wearing them and that initially, uncomfortable pair of shoes, maybe your favorite pair.

Expect it to Take Time

Properly understanding the timelines and setting expectations can go a long way to reducing frustration with your new devices. After a while, you’ll hardly notice them but for that to happen, you need to ramp up use until you’re using them consistently.

One of the ways I usually do this with my clients is to start at somewhere between 3-5 hours a day. From there, after a period of a few weeks, build up to 8 hours a day and eventually, full time use.

This helps with getting overwhelmed by the sometimes harsh new sounds that you’re now able to hear again.

Pay Attention to Your Progress

Like any habit change, it’s important to celebrate successes to remind yourself of what you’ve accomplished. What this means with hearing aids is that you should pay close attention and recognize the sounds that you can hear that you couldn’t before.

I’m not talking about the annoying thing like the baby crying across the street. Focus on the positive things like the sounds of nature, your favorite song, and watching a movie without subtitles.

More importantly, pay attention to how you feel being able to engage with these activities again.

Call Your Doctor

This is something I’ve seen a lot and have to remind patients regularly: 

You don’t have to wait for your next check-in appointment. If something is going wrong or you’re having issues or discomfort with your devices, you should get in touch with the office right away. 

It takes time to dial in the devices to the way that the user wants to use and listen with them so it might take a few visits before you’re at the stage you want to be.

Try Your Devices in Different Locations

One of the most common issues patients have with using their devices is that they don’t work in certain situations. 

This often occurs when they do not use the device in a variety of situations and locations. Your hearing and perception of sound is going to be a lot different at home compared to a busy restaurant.  

The adjustment period, in the beginning, is critical to long-term success with your hearing devices.

Conclusion

As we write time and again here on the Vibe Hearing blog, treating hearing loss is important because it makes all those daily tasks just so much easier.

But technology is just the beginning. There’s also things you can do outside of your devices to make communication easier.

Check out this post on communication strategies you should incorporate into your life to learn more.

 

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