When someone is getting a hearing aid for the first time, an audiologist’s support is essential. You may think I’ve said that because I’m an audiologist. No, my statement comes from the knowledge gained from years of working with new hearing aid users.

They receive two tremendous benefits from working with an audiologist. First, we let our new users know what to expect when they begin wearing hearing aids. As part of our education process, we explain a new hearing aid is similar to wearing glasses for the first time. It may feel a bit uncomfortable at first. After a period of adjustment, you get accustomed to wearing your hearing aid.

Also, an audiologist provides a high level of aftercare to help you during the adjustment period. Since our patients have access to our professional guidance, they don’t have to figure things out on their own. New users who buy over the counter sometimes give up in frustration because they don’t have someone to help them adjust. If you’re having problems with your new hearing aid, here are ways to address the most common issues.

#1 No Sound

Often, fixing this problem is not difficult. We advise new users to check that power is on and that the volume is at the right level. While you’re putting the hearing aid on, it’s easy as a new hearing aid user to inadvertently change these controls. Putting your hearing aids on in front of a mirror can help you avoid changing the controls by mistake.

A blocked microphone or receiver could be responsible for the absence of sound. Try using the tools that came with your hearing aid to gently clean these components. If the sound still hasn’t returned, installing a fresh battery may help.

#2 Uncomfortable Sounds

When you begin using a hearing aid for the first time, your own voice and background noises may seem uncomfortably loud. The reason is hearing involves more than sound reaching our ears. Our brains have to make sound meaningful to us. It takes time for our brains to learn to interpret sounds coming through a hearing aid.

You can help your brain adjust. A few days of reading out loud to yourself should help you get used to your voice. It’s important to remember your brain can relearn to properly interpret background noises. Wearing your hearing aid daily is the key.

#3 Whistling and Feedback Issues

Occasionally, you may hear whistling or other high-pitched feedback sounds when you first put in your hearing aid. Acoustic feedback can result from not quite putting your hearing aid in the right place. Removing the device and putting it on again usually helps. In the event that doesn’t work, turning the volume to a lower setting may resolve feedback problems.

#4 Uncomfortable Fit

Some new users say their device feels uncomfortable. Getting used to having a device in your ear takes time. When you wear your hearing aid every day for at least six hours a day, the uncomfortable feeling should go away after a few days.

However, hearing aids aren’t supposed to hurt. Anyone who experiences pain when they put the device on should remove it immediately. The hearing aid probably wasn’t inserted correctly. Again, a mirror can help you put your instrument where it belongs so that it doesn’t hurt.

We’re available to help if you’re still having problems with your hearing aid. Call us to schedule an appointment.

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Dr. Sally Miranda, AuD, CCC-A

Dr. Sally Miranda, AuD, CCC-A

Dr. Sally earned a Bachelor of Science degree in 1991 and a Master of Arts degree in 1994 at the University of Texas at Austin. She earned her Doctor of Audiology degree in 2000 from the University of Florida. She became the first Doctor of Audiology in Midland and was among the first in the state when the requirements to practice Audiology changed from a Master’s Degree to a Doctorate. In 2011 she was recognized as Business Woman of the Year from the Midland Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.