The arrival of spring signals many things including “spring cleaning.” Why not make this a time for cleaning your hearing aids as well? These high-tech devices do incredible things, but they do require regular cleaning and maintenance. Read on to find some excellent tips for cleaning and repairing your hearing aids this season.
Keeping Hearing Aids Clean
Wax is the number one reason for hearing aid repairs. It usually occurs in the ear, but it can do damage to a hearing aid. Try cleaning your hearing aids every morning when the wax is dry and more accessible to remove from your hearing aids. Be sure to avoid the microphone ports and don’t forget to clean the hearing aid tubing.
Exposure to Water
Try to avoid exposing your hearing aids to water by removing them when swimming. Remove any condensation within the tubing with the help of a tube blower. Also, leave the battery doors open at night which will allow air to flow through and extend battery life.
Always store your hearing aids safely away from small children and pets. If physical damage occurs, contact your hearing healthcare professional to schedule a hearing aid repair appointment.
Cleaning In The Ear (ITE) Hearing Aids
If you are going to clean an ITE model hearing aid, try to focus the cleanup on the openings of the device using a brush to clear wax. Follow up with a wax hook to remove anything that the brush did not clean. Finish the job by wiping the hearing aid clean with a dry cloth.
Cleaning Behind The Ear (BTE) Hearing Aids
Inspect the hearing aid for debris and then remove the dirt with a brush or dry cloth. Remove the earmolds from the hook and wipe clean as well as let them soak overnight in warm, soapy water. Finally, use a bulb blower to force any moisture out of the tubing.
What About The Batteries?
- Wash your hands. This advice is not just for hearing aid care! Dirt is terrible news for hearing aids so be sure to wash your hands anytime you handle your hearing aid batteries.
- Keep hearing aids clean. Dirt and ear wax accumulation affect the performance of a hearing aid battery. The hearing aid speakers become clogged with debris which forces the wearer to increase the volume, which in turn drains the battery.
Tools Of The Trade
To properly clean your hearing aids, a few tools are recommended to have on hand. These tools can be acquired at a local store or online so check with your hearing healthcare professional to find out which tools are best for your particular hearing aids. A few standard tools include:
- Cleaning brush. A soft-bristled brush is ideal for cleaning the body, faceplate, or the sound port of a hearing aid.
- Wax pick and a wire loop. The function of these tools is to get inside of your hearing aid and remove the wax and debris that build up inside.
- Multi-tool. This convenient tool combines the brush with the wax loop for cleaning the entire hearing aid.
See A Hearing Healthcare Professional
If troubleshooting your hearing aid does not improve the sound quality of your device, it is time to visit with your hearing healthcare professional for an adjustment to your hearing aid. It may be a simple fix completed while you wait, or it may need a factory repair. The hearing healthcare professional will assist you in finding the best course of action.