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Hearing aid care

Hearing aids are not waterproof. Avoid moisture and water while wearing hearing aids. Do not wear hearing aids in the bath or shower and remove before swimming.

In wet and rainy conditions take care to keep the hearing aids dry. Also avoid wearing hearing aids during strenuous activity or in hot weather as perspiration may cause damage.

Keep the hearing aids away from animals and pets to avoid them being chewed.

If battery contacts become damp, they can be dried with cotton buds.

Avoid excessive hot and cold temperatures as these may damage the internal components of the hearing aid. Do not store your hearing aids in direct sunlight and avoid using a hairdryer when wearing a hearing aid.

The microphone is quite sensitive and can be damaged easily. It is recommended to avoid applying hairspray when wearing a hearing aid.

At night store the hearing aid with the battery door open in an airtight container with moisture absorbing crystals or a dry aid kit. This will keep the hearing aid dry and remove any moisture build up. DO NOT attempt to dry a hearing aid or ear mould in the oven or microwave. This can cause serious internal and external damage. Always allow hearing aids to dry away from direct sunlight and heat. 

Hearing Aid Cleaning

As hearing aids are not waterproof, they should be wiped with a soft dry cloth to clean. Do not submerge in water or spray with cleaning solution.

The earmould and tube can be washed however in warm soapy water once removed from the hearing aid. This should be done approximately once a week or whenever necessary.

Once washed, dry carefully with a soft cloth and blow out any moisture from the tubing with an air blower. Allow to dry overnight or place in a moisture absorbing container.

Inspect the microphone ports and remove any dirt that may have accumulated by wiping with a soft dry cloth.

When removing the hearing aid from the ear, the mould should be wiped clean with a tissue or cloth to remove any wax. The nib and vent of the mould should also be inspected for wax, and removed with a wax removal tool.

Hearing aid kit

Some functional items that would be helpful to have in the event of any issues include:-

Dry Aid kit Dry Aid Kit
A dry aid kit can be used to remove the moisture from a hearing aid.
batteries
Spare batteries
Air puffer
Air puffer
The air puffer removes the moisture out of the tubing of the ear mould.
Battery tester
Battery tester
Auragel Auragel is a water-based lubricant that can assist with inserting a hearing aid mould or sealing an ear mould in the ear canal. Cleaning brush
Cleaning brush
Stethaclip Stethaclip
A stethaclip is a listening device that can be placed over the top of a hearing aid to check if it is functioning - similar to a stethoscope a doctor may use.
Thin line
Thin line (for cleaning)
 

Plus

  • cleaning wipes
  • Your Australian Hearing Centre's telephone number.

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Hearing aid maintenance

Daily

  • Check the ear mould and vent for wax buildup.
    If wax is present in tip or vent it may impair the sound or cause whistling. Remove wax with wax removal tool.
Tip of mould Ear mould vent
  • Check for moisture in the tubing
    If moisture is present in the tube it may impair the sound. Remove with air puffer or allow to dry.
     
  • When storing, wipe clean with a dry cloth, turn the hearing aid off by opening the battery compartment door and place in a cool, dry, safe place away from heat and moisture.
    Heat and moisture can damage the internal workings of the hearing aid. Opening the battery door disconnects the battery giving more battery life. Wiping the hearing aid with a dry cloth cleans the aid and removes any excess dirt and moisture prolonging the life of the hearing aid.

Annually

  • Replace tubing if required.
    Tubing can become brittle and crack over time. Cracked tubing can impair the sound and also cause the hearing aid to whistle.
     
  • Visit an Audiologist for a hearing check up and hearing aid inspection.
    A hearing loss can change over time depending on cause. A check up can ensure the hearing aid is suitably programmed for the degree of loss. A visual hearing aid inspection allows for any damaged components to be repaired.

When required

  • Wash the ear mould.
    An ear mould can get dirty or impacted with wax. Over time an ear mould can also become discolored and brittle depending on the material. Regular washing ensures a prolonged life of the ear mould. Ensure the mould and tubing are completely dry and free of moisture before use.
    Hearing aids are not waterproof. Be sure to remove the ear mould from the hearing aid before washing.
     
  • Change the battery.
    Batteries expire after a period of time depending on usage. Some hearing aids have a low battery warning tone that allows the user to be notified of a low battery. When battery is used always change the battery. Do not leave old batteries in the hearing aid for a prolonged period. If the user wears two hearing aids at once change both batteries at the same time. Always ensure the user has a fresh supply of batteries.
    A battery tester can indicate how much battery life is remaining .
     
  • Replace the earmould.
    Over time an earmould can also become discolored and brittle depending on the material. The characteristics and canal shape of the ear may also change. Replacing an earmould when required ensures a snug and comfortable fit allowing good sound delivery and reducing the chance of whistling.

Information provided by Jason Fenton
Audiologist
BA (Linguistics), MClinAud, MAudSA.
Reproduced with permission.

14-Nov-2015 8:18 PM (AEST)