3 Ways to Adjust to Hearing Aids
The difference that hearing aids can make in your life should not be underestimated. They can expose you to a whole range and level of sound you haven’t heard in some time. While the benefits of this should seem obvious, some people don’t anticipate the challenge it brings, too. Not only is the physical sensation of wearing the device new in itself but hearing noises anew since your hearing loss can be overwhelming. Hearing care providers help people adjust to their hearing aids all the time and here is some of the most useful advice they offer.
Increase your usage gradually
Hearing clearly for the first time can suddenly expose you to levels of noise you had forgotten about. The sound of birdsong and the hum of your ceiling fan might once have been imperceptible but are now impossible to ignore. Take time using your hearing aid and taking breaks from it, increasing the duration of use as time goes on. Your brain will start to separate background from foreground noise. Don’t jump into the deep end and go into loud environments too soon, either. Your hearing might seem sensitive for a while, and you should build your way up to new levels of noise gradually. Your hearing health professional can put together a schedule of how long you should wear your device each day to help you get used to it.
Anticipate some awkwardness
If you are used to living with hearing loss, you are going to have some habits that it will take some time to get out of. For instance, get ready to turn down all the speakers in the home. Your “default” TV volume may soon become unbearable. Other habits take a little longer to shake. For instance, you might find that you still have the habit of talking louder than others, only now you are able to notice it. It might cause a little embarrassment and awkwardness, but this is going to fade as you acclimate to your device.
Make some adjustments
Your hearing care provider is going to help you find the adjustments that you both believe will help you get the most out of your device. This will include using data not just the results of hearing tests but also your personal experience of the device. That said, there is nothing to stop you from adjusting the levels once it is fitted. Should you need help with adjustments, make an appointment for some free help as soon as possible. Most hearing aids have adjustment functionality built into the device and some can even be connected to your smartphone, tablet, or other digital devices if you don’t have the manual dexterity to make the adjustments physically. It can take a little time getting the specifics of your settings just right.
If the advice above doesn’t work, your hearing aid hurts to use, or you have a suspicion it’s not working as intended, visit your hearing specialist. There could be something wrong with the device that they will help you clear up.