Congratulations on your commitment to improving your communication with hearing aids. Today’s hearing aids provide better quality hearing than ever before.
You will go through an adjustment period with your new hearing aids as your brain learns to listen to the new sound. Your brain needs to earn to adapt to the new sounds and way of hearing and you need to try your hearing aids in different situations. Treat yourself to easy listening situations (one-on-one conversations in quiet environments) during the first few days with the hearing aids as your brain adjusts to hearing again. An auditory training program (LACE) to help you train your ear-to-brain muscle memory, can also speed up the adjustment period.
Many people describe the hearing aids as sounding too “sharp” or “tinny” for the first few days. This is normal as the brain adjusts to hearing sound that you may not have heard from a long time. The sound quality will become more natural as you wear the hearing aids during the first week.
The next “hearing aids tips” is about your voice. Your own voice will sound different with the hearing aids on. Initially you own voice will sound louder to yourself, even though you are speaking at a normal volume. You may sound or feel as though your ears are blocked up a bit. This is normal and should resolve within a few days. We will review how your voice sounds at our follow-up appointment.
Hearing Aid Background Noise
No hearing aid can be made to “filter out” or eliminate background noise. Some levels of hearing aid technology can cope better than others with interfering background noise, but none are able to eliminate background noise.
Many people mistakenly believe that hearing aids only amplify speech and nothing else. However, there are many environmental sounds that you need to be able to hear for your enjoyment as well as your safety. It is not possible or desirable to eliminate all background noises. When all of the sounds are suddenly restored with your hearing aids, your brain, which may have forgotten many sounds, will at first be distracted by every new sound you hear. It takes time to become re-accustomed to the world of sound.
This “hearing aids tips” is about your background noise. When you first start to wear your hearing aids, the world around you may seem very noisy. In addition to the soft sounds of speech you have been missing, many other sounds will reappear such as leaves rustling, water dripping, the sound of your own footsteps and your microwave running. These may be sounds you may not have heard for a long time. Over time, as your brain learns to identify important form unimportant sounds, they will become less distracting.
Soft and Loud Sounds
The hearing aids should be comfortably loud. Hearing loss affects how you perceive soft and loud sounds. Some soft sounds may not be audible without the hearing aids, while some loud sounds may be distorted or unpleasant.
Digital hearing aids are designed to preserve volume so that soft speech should be audible, conversational speech comfortable and loud speech not uncomfortable. Make a note of any sounds that are not comfortable to discuss at your follow -up appointment.
Wearing Hearing Aids
The hearing aids should be so comfortable to wear that you forget you have them in. It is normal to experience itching for the first day or two, but this should subside. It is not normal to experience pain or irritation. Please call us if this occurs.
Hearing Aid Adjustment
Hearing aids may require adjustment or fine-tuning. Sometimes hearing aids need to be adjusted to achieve better listening comfort or satisfaction. It is important that you attend your follow up appointments to ensure that the hearing aids are set optimally.
It may take a few weeks or even months to feel completely at ease with your new hearing aids. Remember that hearing aids are not a part of your special occasion attire. To attain maximum benefit from them, you must wear them on a regular and consistent basis.
Getting used to hearing aids requires motivation, perseverance and patience. It may see tedious and troublesome at first, but stick with it. Your efforts will be worth it!