Our patient care coordinator, Martha, is ready to offer you curbside services in our Lititz office.
This is a friendly reminder that our offices are only open by appointment and for essential visits at this time. We kindly ask that you wait in your car, while wearing your mask, and place your hearing aids in a clean zip lock bag. We will come to your car to retrieve them.
All of the sudden, your entire life requires you to hear people who are 6 feet away, with a mask, versus being right in front of you. Hearing loss takes on a greater challenge in a time like this. For many folks, isolation can lead to all sort of other problems.
At Pure Sound we have Hearing Aid Technology built for this time.
In preparation for your visit, we are:
YOUR HEALTH & WELL-BEING IS OUR TOP PRIORITY!
Call 717-945-1477 for a FREE hearing test at any office!
Strasburg 100 Historic Dr. #113
Elizabethtown 99 Masonic Dr. #103 Sycamore Square
Lititz 1170 Erbs Quarry Rd. #2-2 Brighton Shoppes
Mount Joy 1013 W. Main St. #5 Florin Shoppes, Rear
If you encounter any issues with your hearing aids, most of them can be solved at home. Here are some typical problems that many hearing aid users have come across.
If you notice loss of sound, a weak or irregular amplification, internal noises from your device or distorted/garbled sounds, ask yourself these four questions:
Is the hearing aid switched on?
If you don’t hear any sound coming from your hearing aid, make sure that the battery door on the hearing device is securely closed and the hearing aid is switched on. If there is a volume control feature, make sure that the volume isn’t on a mute or very low setting.
Is there an issue with the battery?
The battery needs to rest inside the hearing aid device in a precise way in order for it to function (look at your instruction manual for information on how to correctly place the battery in) All batteries have a “ + ” and “ - ” mark. The flat edge of a hearing aid battery is the positive pole. Make sure that the battery is placed correctly in your hearing aid. If the battery is upside down, the hearing aid will not be able to extract any power.
There is a chance that your battery is dead or very weak. Take a fresh battery and remove the sticker/tab from it. After removing the sticker/tab, you should wait 3-5 minutes before placing the battery in your hearing aid. This lets it thoroughly charge before being used.
FEMA and the American Red Cross recommend keeping hearing aid batteries in your disaster supply kit.
Is there an obstruction in the hearing aid?
Earwax, moisture, oils and/or other debris may build up in your hearing aid’s microphone(s), sound port, and tubing which can cause the device to malfunction.
Is the hearing aid switched onto the proper program?
Your hearing aid may have multiple programs that you can switch in between. Make sure that you are using the most suitable program based on the environment that you are in. There are some programs that are meant to be used with the phone, or in different environments, that may sound unusual if you decide to use them in other situations that it was not originally intended to be used in.
Please be aware that Pure Sound services will only be available by appointment and for essential visits at this time. Essential visits include all appointments that require repairs, re-fittings and new hearing aid fittings. If you are having any issues with your hearing aids, or need supplies for your hearing aids, please call us before visiting one of our office locations.
Due to the social distancing mandates in regard to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, loneliness has become a leading issue among those who suffer from hearing loss.
According to a recent study, individuals who have hearing loss are linked to an increased risk of loneliness and being socially isolated. This is just another correlation to how untreated hearing loss is associated with higher risks of developing dementia, depression, and falling.
It’s important that hearing healthcare professionals address a patient’s loneliness, in addition to the challenges they may face when trying to communicate with others.
Another matter when it comes to being quarantined is how dependent everyone becomes on technology. Instead of communicating verbally and in person, the latest technology can actually make interacting with others more difficult for anyone with a hearing impairment.
People who have hearing loss do not have the capability of associating a voice with a face. Distorted sounds that tend to occur with technology makes it challenging to identify who is speaking and what that person is saying.
Subsequently, those with hearing loss risk being misinformed, they may be disruptive if clarification is needed or a reiteration of what was said, and they could become detached from others if they decide to avoid communicating altogether.
Hearing healthcare facilities that are unable to offer services, may contribute to the further decline of a person’s social life.
Patients are at risk when they suddenly stop using their hearing aids, due to hearing healthcare offices that do not offer hearing aid repairs during these difficult times. This leads to hearing aid users who may stop wearing their hearing aids or wear them less and less each day. This may cause problems when it comes to communication, safety, and health issues that are related to severe hearing loss.
It is important to note that social isolation is not equated with, or automatically leads to, loneliness. Being lonely and being socially isolated are two different concepts. Sensory impairments, like hearing loss, can lead to loneliness and social isolation, but someone who is socially isolated may not actually feel lonely.
Advice for Hearing Healthcare Providers and Patients
With physical distancing measures in place, hearing healthcare providers can safely keep in contact with patients via telephone. Hearing healthcare providers can consider reaching out to patients and let them know that you are available to answer questions and concerns. A simple call can help relieve the loneliness and social isolation that many individuals with hearing loss experience.
Tips for Hearing Aid Users and Those Who They Communicate With
There are still some unique concerns for those with hearing loss during this time. The facial coverings - as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus - can disrupt lip reading for those who have that ability.
Speakers and listeners must practice useful means of communication, such as rephrasing, repeating, and summarizing what was said.
When someone who has hearing loss uses a facemask, please be aware of the hearing aid device(s). There’s a chance of unintentionally knocking them loose and off of the ear(s) while taking off facial coverings.
Proper Hygiene for Your Hearing Aids
Not only do you need to keep your hands clean and thoroughly wash them, but your hearing aids also need proper maintenance. Hearing aids, along with other amplification devices, need to be cleaned on a daily basis. Look at your user manuals for explicit instructions. Remember, do NOT use any alcohol-based disinfectants to clean your hearing aid devices. The alcohol can cause the dome to become brittle.
Advice for Caregivers of Patients with Hearing Loss
Pure Sound will only be open by appointment and for essential visits. Essential visits include all appointments that require repairs, re-fittings, and new hearing aid fittings.
Earbuds and exposure to bacteria
When we carry our earbuds around with us, they become exposed to all kinds of surfaces, which raises the risks of gathering bacteria from our bags, desks or tray tables.
Not only do our earbuds constantly come in contact with contaminated surfaces, but simply using earbuds can build up more bacteria in your ears. Wearing earbuds traps moisture and heat in the ear canal which can create a breeding ground for bacteria to grow.
Bacteria is bad, but earwax is good
Our ears use earwax, or cerumen, as a protective shield against bacteria. We normally see earwax on earbuds, after removing them from our ears. Earwax helps to clean and lubricate our ears, and reduce the feelings of dryness and itchiness.
Earwax also prevents debris and dirt from coming in contact with our eardrums. The apocrine glands located in the outer section of our ears produce the cerumen. These glands are similar to the glands that produce sweat. The same situations that cause you to go into fight-or-flight mode can make you sweat and induce stress. This circumstance has also been shown to make your ears produce more wax.
If your ears generate a lot of wax, you can use a cloth to clean the outer part of your ear canal or you can place a couple of drops of an over-the-counter ear cleaning solution that will soften and remove the wax. If your ears feel as though they are obstructed or the wax interferes with how you hear, get it removed by a professional. Moving your jaw from eating or talking can also help remove earwax.
There's a very low chance of getting an infection from sharing earbuds
Studies on whether it's safe to share earbuds have varied from different researchers. Business Insider had tested 22 pairs of in-the-ear (ITE) style earbuds in Columbia University's microbiology lab. Most samples tested positive for bacteria that are found in our skin, such as staphylococcus. Two of the samples tested positive for yeast. Yeast is a fungus that can cause infection. You can get an ear infection from yeast.
Sharing earbuds can present new bacteria in your ears, and double the microbial flora in the ears. Most bacteria are innocuous and generally, there's a low risk of infection. But there is also a small risk of producing middle ear infections, fungus, and an increase of swimmer's ear if you share earbuds. If there is a laceration in your ear canal, sharing earbuds can also cause skin infections.
Tips on earbud usage
It would be best to avoid sharing earbuds. If you really need to share them, make sure you or the person you are sharing them with thoroughly disinfect the earbuds with rubbing alcohol, a disinfecting spray, or professional-strength cleaning wipes. Use a dampened cotton ball to remove any visible residue and bacteria.
You might also want to invest in earbud covers.
Hearing aids, just like earbuds, are not for sharing. Each hearing aid is customized and programmed for each individual user. They are at the same risk of exposure to bacteria from various surfaces. It's best to have good cleaning practices for your hearing aids and to occasionally get them thoroughly cleaned by a professional. If you, or a loved one, are in need of hearing aids please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing Aids for a free hearing test and consultation. If you need to get your hearing aids cleaned by a professional, please contact us.
Our patient care coordinator, Martha, just received a shipment of professional strength hearing aid cleaning wipes in our Lititz office. Stop by at any of our office locations in Elizabethtown, Mount Joy, Lititz or Strasburg and to pick up some cleaning wipes. They may be used to clean your hearing aids, earbuds or earplugs.
If you wear hearing aids, have you ever noticed a difference in how sounds are being heard - even with a fresh pair of batteries or a full charge overnight? Do noises sound muffled, distant, or just wrong, as though something is missing?
The other possible reason why you may be hearing these faint sounds could be due to earwax.
Earwax is unavoidable. No matter what type of hearing aid you wear, whether it’s in-the-canal (ITC) or behind-the-ear (BTE), there will be contact with your ear canal.
Earwax has health benefits for your ears. It possess antibacterial and antifungal elements that can ward off many infections.
Earwax and hearing aids aren’t always a good mix. Moisture from earwax can prevent hearing aids from properly functioning. Fortunately, earwax is predictable and manufacturing companies are making strides to improve hearing aid devices.
Today’s hearing aids have a protective shield, known as wax guards. This helps to stop earwax from interfering with the performance of your hearing device. The “faint” sounds may be caused by the wax guards.
More on Wax Guards
A wax guard is a very small part of technology in your hearing aid. Wax cannot enter through it, but sounds have the ability to do so. It is important to have wax guards in your hearing aids to let them work properly. There are some instances when the wax guard could be the issue:
After Changing Your Wax Guard
You should be able to hear much more clearly. Listening and engaging in conversations should be easier.
There is a learning curve when taking care of any intricate devices like hearing aids. If you are experiencing poor sound quality, check your wax guard.
If you, or a loved one, are in need of a new wax guard or a professional hearing aid cleaning, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing Aids.
In addition to colder temperatures, the wintertime carries along risks to your ears and hearing health. Here are some things to consider this season.
Snow machines and winter gear
Any machines or tools, particularly ones that are used for outdoor maintenance, can damage your hearing. The whir from your snow blower can surpass 100 decibels, which can cause noise-induced hearing loss. You should wear a pair of foam earplugs. These can conveniently be purchased from a drug store. There is also the option of wearing noise reduction safety ear muffs, or headphones that completely cover your ears. These can keep your ears warm, while also protecting your ears from dangerous levels of noise.
In order to avoid potential moisture build up in your hearing aids, you might want to remove the devices and keep them in a safe spot, or occasionally wipe them down. Your head will most likely be covered in earmuffs or a hat, and the sweat that builds up in your ear canals could cause problems for these devices.
A good solution to reduce moisture build up is to place your hearing aids in a dry-aid kit overnight. Remove the disposable batteries (rechargeable batteries may not need to be removed, talk to your hearing instrument specialist to verify this). Hearing aid sweatbands are spandex covers that are designed to keep moisture from getting to your hearing aids. You can also get water-resistant hearing aids.
Dangerous decibel levels at indoor sports arenas
Many people enjoy going to arenas to watch basketball or hockey during the wintertime. It’s important to know that decibels, particularly at indoor arenas, can - and usually do - exceed safe noise levels. A safe noise level is 70 decibels. Some arenas can reach up to 120 decibels!
You may not initially notice any damage to your hearing because hearing loss occurs gradually over time. Always be prepared and bring a small pair of foam earplugs wherever you go. Make sure the earplugs are properly fitted for maximum protection. They can help preserve your hearing in the long run.
Look out for slippery surfaces when walking
According to a Johns Hopkins study from 2014, those who have hearing loss are three times more likely to fall than those who do not have hearing loss. You are at an even higher risk of falling during the winter due to ice and snow. If you have issues with your balance because of your hearing loss, or Meniere’s disease, look out for ice patches that may be hidden, objects that are covered in snow or slippery steps that could cause you to fall.
Take care if you get a cold or flu
If you believe that you may have an ear infection, go see a doctor.
In the winter season, your ears are normally colder, therefore you have less circulation to provide your ears with a healthy blood supply. Bacteria and virus infections are more prevalent during the colder season. This combination raises the risk of otitis media.
Otitis media is an ear infection that leads to severe swelling and inflammation to the middle ear. This swelling and infection could build up behind the eardrum and obstruct the Eustachian tube. Ear infections can be treated with antibiotics, but you may suffer from temporary hearing loss if the fluid is not cleared yet. If you believe that you may have an ear infection, go see a doctor immediately.
Keep your ears warm and dry if you are going to be outside in a cold environment. This may lower the possibility of ear infections. It’s also important to have a healthy diet and to exercise regularly for good blood circulation, particularly in the wintertime when everyone has a high risk of infection.
Keep your ears warm and dry when you are skiing or riding a snowmobile
Wearing earmuffs, hats, scarves, and/or sweatbands are a great way to refrain from over exposure to extremely cold and wet conditions which may cause exostosis, or “surfer’s ear”. This is a rare condition typically occurs when someone is in or near cold water. Exostosis happens when you are exposed to cold temperatures and knobs of bone grow on the bone that surrounds your ear canal. The ear canal could get obstructed, increasing the risk of infection due to the fluid that is trapped. This condition can be corrected with surgery, but it’s best to keep your ears covered, warm and dry to lower any risks.
If you, or a loved one, suffer from hearing loss or need advanced hearing aid care maintenance, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing Aids for a consultation.
If you wear hearing aids, they are probably one of the more delicate and essential devices that you own. Many people wear their hearing aids all day long. They help make your life more enjoyable and easier to navigate. You must take good care of your hearing aids to get the best use from them.
1. Use Cleaning Tools
A brush and wax pick are important tools that help with earwax buildup on your hearing aid. This is the most common cause of malfunction. Too much earwax can create static, muffled, or loud feedback noises.
Use the wax brush and pick on a daily basis. Each person produces a different amount of earwax, so it’s important to check your hearing aids often to notice if they are blocked up. Make it a routine to clean your hearing aids at the same time, either at the beginning or the end of your day. Wipe them with a tissue or dry cloth. Separate tubing and clean it to restrict earwax from accumulating inside.
2. Practice Preventative Care
Because hearing aid devices are electronic, it’s important not to get them wet or allow moisture to build up. Remove hearing aids when showering, bathing, or washing your face with water. Do not leave them in the bathroom while you are taking a steamy shower. When you have taken the hearing aids off for the day, open the battery doors overnight. This lets the hearing aid air out and dries the inside of the battery compartment.
You may also use a dehumidifier. These cases rid your hearing aids of moisture and are great to use as a storage unit. Keeping your hearing aids dry is important.
3. If your hearing aids get wet, here are some more tips:
Do not panic if your hearing aids get wet. A dehumidifier or hearing aid dry kit can be helpful in this situation. The devices can most likely be repaired. If none of the advice that was previously mentioned works, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing Aids and set up an appointment.
Hearing Aid Feedback
Hearing aids a great way to hear the important sounds from your life again. From your loved ones, to nature and music, hearing aids can make a huge difference in your life.
Sadly, these devices might draw some unwanted attention due to feedback noises which sometimes produce a loud, high-pitched noise.
Hearing aid feedback is defined as a noise that is produced when an acoustic signal - or sound wave - leaves the ear canal and comes in contact with the hearing aid’s microphone. It may sound like a buzz, hiss, screech, squeal, static or whistle.
This is a common issue with hearing aids. If a hearing aid user has a severe hearing loss, there is a higher chance for feedback noise due to the intensity and magnitude of the sound wave.
Causes of Feedback in Hearing Aids
There are three common types of hearing aid feedback that wearers experience: acoustical, electronic or mechanical.
Hearing Aid Feedback in the Latest Devices
Modern hearing aids are much less prone to create feedback because they are designed to handle the noises. These hearing aids also don’t produce a lot of feedback noises for those with mild to moderate hearing loss. As long as the device is in proper working condition, is either custom fitted, or a standard hearing aid that fits comfortably, and the sounds are traveling to the eardrum, there should not be any issues.
Fine-tuning Your Hearing Aids to Avoid Feedback
Feedback sounds are not detrimental to your health, but they may irritate you or cause some embarrassment when you’re in a public environment. If the feedback is acoustical, here are some things you can do that might correct the issue.
Get Help for Your Hearing and Hearing Aids
Don’t let the fear of experiencing feedback noises stop you from getting your hearing treated. Untreated hearing loss can worsen over time, and exposes you to other health issues including dementia, depression, social isolation and other psycho-social problems.
If you, or a loved one, use hearing aids and experience feedback noises, please schedule an appointment with one of our hearing instrument specialists at Pure Sound Hearing Aids. We offer custom-fit hearing aids, and standard hearing aids with domes that are available in a variety of sizes.
If you notice that your hearing aids have suddenly stopped working, there might be a quick and easy way to fix it. Eventually the devices might need to be taken to your hearing instrument specialist, but you also may be able to fix it yourself.
Are You Hearing Static or Broken Noises?
If your hearing aids stopped functioning, the most common reason is low battery power. Be sure that the battery is completely charged or it is brand new - batteries normally last for a week if your hearing aids are used routinely. You can lengthen the battery life by switching off your hearing aids when they are not being used, or taking the batteries out of your hearing aids. It’s best to store the batteries and the hearing aid itself away from moist, hot, and cold temperatures. In other words, do not store your hearing aids or batteries in the refrigerator, keep them away from steamy bathrooms and shield them from the rain.
Static noises may be caused by receivers that become clogged or dirty, covered in lint or other debris, and possibly flawed programming. You could also change the channels or volume if the static persists.
Do You Hear Whistling in You Hearing Aids?
One of the most common explanations for a whistling sound are hearing aid devices that do not fit comfortably. When you buy your hearing aids, the device should be customized to the size of your ears and your personal hearing needs.
If you hear whistling noises when you wear your hearing aids for the first time, remove them from your ears and adjust them. If you are still hearing a whistle even when they fit comfortably in your ears, there may be cerumen (earwax) built up which causes a blockage, or the volume might be too loud.
Are You Unable to Hear Anything at All?
If you sense that the sound on your hearing aids are not functioning properly, make sure they are switched on and the volume is loud enough for you to hear. There’s a chance that you may have unintentionally tapped or switched something while placing them into your ears. Double check your batteries, you might need to replace them.
If you still can’t hear anything, look at the hearing aid tubes and receiver. They may be dirty or plugged with earwax. It’s best to clean after you remove the batteries and clean every surface with a dry cloth. Use a proper cleaning brush and wax pick provided by your hearing instrument specialist.
When is it Time to Get a Professional to Help?
If you need a more thorough cleaning, it is recommended that you go to your hearing instrument specialist. You can also get batteries, tubes, wax guards from them.
Most hearing aids include a protection plan or warranties. These are useful when you are unable to resolve the problem yourself and need a professional to help. If your hearing aid continues to have these problems, even with the help from a professional, it may be time to replace part of the hearing aid or get a new device altogether.
Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing Aids if your hearing aids have stopped working. Our hearing instrument specialists will be able to determine the best solution for you!
Moisture and Hearing Aids
Some hearing aid wearers have experienced malfunctions in their devices when they come in contact with sweat or other forms of moisture. Manufacturers have attempted to handle this issue by creating water resistant hearing aids, but moisture still causes some complications.
Preventing Moisture from Coming in Contact with Your Hearing Aids
One tip is to wear a sweatband when you exercise in order to absorb excess perspiration.
Like all electronics, hearing aids are fragile. It is advised that you should avoid placing them in a climate that is warm and humid. It’s best to get a hearing aid dryer or dehumidifier to store your hearing aids. This will help preserve and extend the usage of your hearing aids.
It is also important to regularly keep your hearing aids well maintained by cleaning them. Remove earwax or other debris that has built up to prevent any moisture from permeating into the devices. If you live in an environment with a lot of humidity, heat or pollen, it is recommended that you make an appointment with your hearing instrument specialist who will provide a more thorough cleaning.
If you need to have your hearing aids cleaned, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing Aids to schedule an appointment.
Clean Your Own Hearing Aids and Get A Professional Cleaning
The build-up of earwax and sweat in your hearing aids is unavoidable when they rest inside your ear canals. In some instances this accumulation is noticeable simply by looking at your hearing aids, and most wearers are inclined to clean the cerumen off by themselves. It is advised that wearers lightly clean their hearing aids each day, while giving the devices to a professional when it needs a more thorough sterilization. Hearing aids have lots of technology condensed in a small housing case. Because of this, the device can become easily damaged if it is not properly cleaned or cared for.
The Purpose of Hearing Aid Cleanings
Just like all forms of technology, hearing aids function the best when they undergo regular maintenance work. This is particularly true during hot, summertime weather. Sweat, earwax and oil from your body will accumulate in the hearing aids’ receivers and microphones. In addition to getting your hearing aids dirty, there is also the possibility of transferring bacteria. The build-up of dirt, earwax, oil and sweat may subdue the quality of sound provided by your hearing aids.
Frequency of Hearing Aid Cleanings by a Professional
The frequency of thorough hearing aid cleanings by a professional depends on the style of your hearing aids, and how fast your perspiration or cerumen accumulates. Some hearing aid wearers should have their devices cleaned every three months, whereas others can get their devices cleaned every six months.
A Hearing Aid Cleaning Conducted by a Professional
When a professional cleans your hearing aids, proper tools are used to lightly clean out wax build up, sweat, debris or dust. They will make sure the debris is carefully removed so as not to damage the circuitry of your hearing aids.
Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing Aids to assure that you are scheduling maintenance repairs, fittings and cleaning appointments at proper intervals. The microphones, receivers, outer housing and tubing should be cleaned. Appointments for hearing aid cleanings are brief and do not require the need to keep your hearing aids overnight in the office.
Cleanings Done at Home
You can conduct daily maintenance for your hearing aids at home, and leave the deep cleanings to a professional. Here are some tips:
If you, or a loved one, are in need of a professional hearing aid cleaning, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing Aids!
Modern hearing aids are like scaled-down computers that rest in your ears. There is so much technology condensed into a tiny device. Here are the elements that make up a behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aids.
Amplifier and Microphone
Each hearing aid device features a microphone which collects sound and transmits it to the amplifier. In a BTE hearing aid, both of these features are found in the sleek housing case that rests behind your ears.
It is crucial that you keep this part of your hearing aid dry and clean. The majority of manufacturers advise users to wipe off your hearing aids with a soft, dry cloth when you remove them and store them away overnight. This helps to keep the microphone screen clean, and functioning properly.
The Ear Hook
Similar to the frames on a pair of eyeglasses, BTE hearing aids hook over the outer part of your ears. This hook, sometimes referred to as an Elbow, also attaches the microphone and amplifier case to the tubing and ear mold that rests inside your ear canal. The ear hook normally wears out and gets replaced when body sweat and oil erodes the plastic. To extend its life, it is best to use a soft cloth or tissue to thoroughly wipe the ear hook.
It is essential that the hook fits comfortably on your ear, and securely attaches to the casing and tubing. Your hearing instrument specialist will be able to determine the best fit for you.
The plastic tubing located on the end of the ear hook transfers the sound from the microphone to the ear mold. The length of this tubing depends on what make and model your hearing aid is, and it can be customized for the best fit. Just like the ear hook, the tubing is made from plastic and will need to be replaced.
You should check these tubes each day to be sure that they are securely attached to the ear hook and ear mold, and to look out for any possible damage.
Earmolds rest comfortably inside your ear canal and concha bowl (the outer ear located closest to your ear canal). It gives the hearing aid an acoustic seal for the electronic sounds that the microphone is funneling inside. The fit and shape of the earmold depends on your hearing aid model and the severity of your hearing loss. Here are four of the most common types of ear molds that are available:
Hearing aid wearers frequently believe that their hearing devices are not working properly due to this switch. For BTE models, this switch is located in the casing that rests behind the ear. If you notice that your hearing aids are not working, make sure that it is switched on. It’s a good idea to switch off your hearing aids when you are not wearing them so as not to drain the batteries.
The majority of BTE models have a battery compartment that is found near the on/off switch. It is generally recommended that you take the batteries out and keep the compartment open overnight. This will allow the hearing aid to dry out.
Hearing aid batteries last for 3 to 22 days. If your hearing aid is not functioning properly, make sure that your battery is correctly inserted in the device. If it does not work, even after you have switched it on, replace it with a new battery.
If you, or a loved one, are in need of a new hearing aid, a hearing aid repair, or new batteries, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing Aids.
Debris and moisture can destroy your hearing aids. Generally, hearing aids last for three to five years as long as there hasn’t been any deterioration in your hearing abilities.
Here is some advice on keeping your hearing aids clean, dry, and still functioning so they can last as long as possible.
Keep the Devices Clean
Earwax protects the inside parts of our ears from foreign debris, harm, and infections. It can also buildup and obstruct the mechanics of a hearing aid, by becoming clogged in the microphone or receiver.
In some instances, wearing hearing aids can cause people to produce more earwax. Earwax is meant to prevent foreign objects from coming in contact with the eardrum. By placing a hearing device in your ear, your body may view it as something that they need to attack with more ear wax.
According to the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery (AAO-HNS) their guidelines when dealing with earwax state that those who wear hearing aids have a higher risk for impacted earwax, which is when an excessive amount of wax builds up in the ear.
It’s important to clean and maintain your hearing aids each day in order to keep them from being coated with too much earwax, dust, or debris.
You can use a cleaning brush, or even an old toothbrush to lightly clean off any earwax or other foreign matter from the hearing aid. You should also open the battery compartment and brush off any debris found inside. Different hearing aid devices may require certain directions and tools for cleaning. Your hearing instrument specialist can give you further recommendations on taking care of your device.
If there is a wax guard or wax trap (in-the-ear, receiver-in-ear, or in-the-canal hearing aids may have this), they should be changed on a daily basis in order to avoid earwax blockage, which can restrict the quality of sound. Your hearing instrument specialist should tell you how frequently to replace them, and demonstrate how to do so. He or she may supply replacements, or you can purchase them online.
Keep the Hearing Devices Dry
Moisture and hearing aids do not go together. The nuts and bolts of a hearing device are exposed to weather, sweat, or dirt in order to harness sounds. As a result, moisture can quickly find its way inside and ruin a hearing aid.
Use a secured case when you go to the pool or a sauna. If it’s a place where you would not take your phone, it wouldn’t be a place where you would bring your hearing aids.
When you are getting ready for your day, complete your cleaning and grooming routine before placing your hearing aids in your ears. This will help prevent any possible contact with water, hairspray, or hair gel.
Never store your hearing aids in the bathroom. Steam can permeate into the devices and you may accidentally get them wet or drop them in water.
Store the devices in a dry aid kit or dry storage kit overnight. You may use desiccant and a container, or an electronic accessory that disperses air around the aid. Talk to your hearing instrument specialist about getting one.
If your hearing devices get wet, you should use a dry storage kit to dry them. Do not use a hair dryer or place your hearing aids in the microwave or oven - your hearing device will get damaged.
It is recommended that you wear your hearing aids all day, if possible. If you remove them in the middle of the day, you may forget where they are, and they might accidentally go through the washing machine. It’s also important to keep your hearing aids away from your pets. They could chew up the devices.
Advice for Troubleshooting
If your hearing aids are not working properly, thoroughly clean and dry them.
Intermittent sounds or noises full of static could indicate that moisture has reached the batteries. You may be able to resolve this problem by inserting new batteries. Feedback noises from your hearing aids are usually a sign of excessive earwax, so you may need to get your ears examined.
If none of these tips work, contact your hearing instrument specialist. Faulty parts can be replaced in the office, or sent to a manufacturer for repairs.
Millions of people wear tiny, custom-made, digitally programmed hearing aids while going about their daily routines. If you depend on hearing aids, it is important to promptly recognize and correct any issues that may arise.
4 Frequent issues with Hearing Aids
If you cannot repair these issues yourself, you should take them to a hearing instrument specialist to get them checked out.
6 Tips for what to do if Your Hearing Aids are not Producing any Sound
4 Things to Consider if Your Hearing Aids aren’t Loud Enough
4 Tips on What to do if Your Hearing Aids sound Strange or Distorted
4 Tips on What to do if Your Hearing Aids make a Whistling Sound or Create Feedback Noise
If you recently lost a large amount of weight, this may affect the way your hearing aids fit. Your hearing instrument specialist can adjust the hearing aids and determine whether they can repair this issue in their office, or if you need to have your hearing aids or earmold remade.
If you have tried these suggestions and your hearing aids still do not work for you, please make an appointment at Pure Sound Hearing Aids with one of our hearing instrument specialists.
Cleaning your hearing aids on a regular basis will help you maintain a reliable sense of hearing. Because hearing aids are such an important investment, it would be a good idea to know how to properly clean and take care of them on your own.
These hearing devices rest within your ear canals, so they are constantly exposed to moisture, earwax, and foreign debris. Routine cleanings that you can do yourself - in addition to regular hearing aid care services from your hearing healthcare professional - will ensure that your hearing aids will be reliable under any circumstances.
4 Tips for General Hearing Aid Care
3 Tips for cleaning ITE (In-The-Ear) model Hearing Aids
3 Tips on how to clean Behind-the-ear (BTE) and Earmold Hearing Aids
3 Cleaning Tips for all types of Hearing Aids
Cleaning Tools for Hearing Aids
Talk to your hearing healthcare provider and find out which tools are best for your hearing aids.
Here are the most common tools used for cleaning hearing aids:
When to get Professional help to Clean Hearing Aids
Hearing aids should be cleaned by a professional health care provider or hearing instrument specialist once every 6 months.
If you need help to get your hearing aids cleaned, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing Aids to set up an appointment!
Our Patient Care Coordinator, Martha, is busy checking appointments at our office in Lititz! If you need an appointment for a hearing test, or hearing aid care, call Martha!
Moisture, earwax, and other external substances regularly come in contact with hearing aids. Just like with any digital accessory, harsh environments make them susceptible to damage. As a result, the device may malfunction. There is a higher risk for this problem if someone who wears hearing aids engages in more active routines.
To alleviate this problem, nearly all hearing aids have a feature known as “nano coating”, which deflects moisture. This element delays or prevents any possible damage to the hearing aids.
A Nano Coating Inspired by Nature
Surface™ Nanoshield, is an invisible nano varnish. It comes from lotus plants, which repel water drops while removing dirt from the leaves.
This coating changes the exterior of the hearing aid, and how it comes in contact with moisture, earwax, oils, sweat, etc., by stopping these substances from clinging to or permeating through the hearing aid. In other words, the Surface™ Nanoshield is hydrophobic (water resistant) and oleophobic (oil repellent).
It is crucial to prevent these fluids from getting into your hearing aids. Your ears have various types of fluids: dirt, sweat, wax, and sometimes even water, depending on how humid it is. The Surface™ Nanoshield helps to protect your hearing aids, and as a result the coating makes them last longer.
Do not allow fluids to get directly in contact with your hearing aids -- do not shower or swim with your hearing aids on. Certain contact with moisture is inevitable. Body sweat is prevalent during the summertime and workouts at the gym.
Starkey Tested, Wearer Approved
The Surface™ Nanoshield was tested by using a salt fog, which is typically used in consumer electronic industries. Hearing aid devices that had the Surface™ Nanoshield, are put in a salt fog environment for 48 hours, in 95 degrees Fahrenheit. This replicates how the hearing aids may function during a long period of time, in a sweaty and muggy atmosphere. After the humidity and moisture tests, the aids are dried for 48 hours. The Surface™ Nanoshield has steadily withstood the test, which guarantees that it will provide the assistance and reliability necessary for your hearing.
Hear Clear Wax Guards
Starkey hearing aids have a state-of-the-art, earwax defense system known as Hear Clear. Hear Clear features disposable wax guards, which stop the buildup of earwax in the hearing aid receiver.
Even though maintaining and cleaning your hearing aids is vital for their durability, it’s important to know that all Starkey hearing aids have a protective shield to help you hear better.
If you are interested in Starkey hearing aids, featuring the Surface™ Nanoshield, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing Aids!
Our Hearing Instrument Specialist, Christine, is hard at work in the Mount Joy office as she shows patients how to clean their hearing aids. Keeping your hearing aids clean significantly impacts the quality of your hearing abilities. Contact Christine if your hearing aids have not been checked for a while.
Our Patient Care Coordinator, Desiree, is busy stocking her hearing aid lab at Pure Sound Hearing in Strasburg. Hearing aid maintenance is very important, so contact Desiree at Pure Sound Hearing Aids if your hearing aids have not been checked for a while.
Does using your earbuds excessively, sharing them, or putting them everywhere harm your ears? On flights, for example, earbuds can end up being contaminated by being everywhere from your carry-on bag to your tray table. They can even be contaminated by being on your desk from home. How clean are earbuds and can they be shared?
Your own earwax is good; it helps clean, protect, and lubricate your ears. It also helps keep debris out of your ears. But someone else’s earwax can introduce new bacteria and infection into your ears, even though the chances are slim.
If you have to share earbuds, disinfect them with rubbing alcohol or disinfecting spray. Use a dampened cotton ball to get rid of any waxy residue and invisible bacteria or get disposable earbud covers.
Offering protection against bacteria, earwax is good. But not with sharing earbuds. It introduces new bad bacteria into the ears and can even cause a yeast infection, according to studies. Even though most of the bacteria is harmless, sharing does increase the chances for fungus, middle ear infections, and swimmer’s ear. So, avoid sharing if possible. Also, simply wearing your own earbuds can trap moisture and heat in the ear canal, breeding bacteria.
Use a cloth to wipe the outer ear canal or use a few drops of ear-cleaning drops to soften or remove wax in your ears, so you can hear better and prevent build-up on your earbuds. You can see a professional about earwax buildup if your ears feel blocked. Stress increases earwax, but jaw movements from eating or talking move the earwax to the outer ear.
For more information, contact your hearing instrument specialist at Pure Sound Hearing Aids.
Just like an oven, your ears are self-cleaning. Really! With the help of earwax, your ears can clean themselves. Earwax forms on the outer one-third of your ear canal, naturally moving to the outer edge with jaw movements, such as chewing or talking. This movements cleans your ears.
Earwax is also believed to contain protective, antibacterial, and lubricating elements. Wax provides a barrier from debris for the eardrum. You might harm the wall of your ear canal or the eardrum by inserting ear-cleaning or wax-removal tools. And without the natural lubricants, your ears can feel dry and itchy.
To clean or not to clean your ears?
According to the American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery Foundation (AAO-HNSF), your ears never need to be cleaned. It’s a misnomer that they need to cleaned for hygiene purposes, they suggest. In fact, inserting stuff like cotton swabs or other devices into the ears can be dangerous. You can push earwax down and block the ear canal completely, cause impaction, and/or trauma.
But if you want to clean your ears from earwax buildup, you can use a softening agent once a week. Or, you can schedule with a doctor or hearing instrument specialist. However, if you have diabetes, a weakened immune system, tubes in your ears, or a hole in your ears, do not clean them yourself. Consult a physician.
There are signs revealing excessive buildup. You will experience pain, infection, decreased hearing, itching, and more. Excessive buildup is impaction and includes a plugged sensation, pain, or fullness. You might also experience more coughing, odor, decreased hearing, ringing, or itching. Have an expert use a curette, suction, irrigation, or microscope for earwax removal.
Earwax on hearing aids
Hearing aids may increase your ears’ manufacture of earwax because it can stimulate the glands in the ear canal and block the normal movement of wax from the ear canal to the outer one-third of the ear. Also, earwax can block the inner workings of the hearing aids, reducing performance. See your hearing instrument specialist for a proper cleaning of your hearing aids. Contact Pure Sound Hearing Aids for assistance.
Hearing aids are more and more high-tech every day. Typically you can get 3 to 10 days out of a single hearing aid battery, depending upon how much how much you engage in streaming, use the hearing aids, and get hearing aid maintenance. However, there are steps you can take to maximize the life of your hearing aid batteries.
Here are 10 tips to get more mileage out of your hearing aid batteries:
Hopefully, these 10 tips will be useful to you in maintaining the life of your hearing aid batteries. Contact a hearing instrument specialist at Pure Sound Hearing Aids for any additional information that would useful in preserving your hearing aids.
As it gets warmer out, you might be ready to tackle the dirt and clutter that have amassed over the wintertime. In no time, you will be spring cleaning your basement, purses, wallets, car, and garage. But don’t forget about optimally cleaning your hearing aids, since you wear them every day. Below are ways to sanitize them on a higher level, besides using your normal cleaning routine.
Dehumidify your hearing aids
Rather than just air drying your hearing aids, per usual, go to the next level and dehumidify them once a year, such as in the spring. Water intrusion and sweat can be damaging to the delicate mechanisms inside. Routinely, you probably dry them out by putting them on a towel overnight with the battery compartment open, which is fine. But to extend the life of your hearing aids, use a dehumidifier made specifically for them, instead. Doing so is more effective than just airing them out. Please take note of the list of options for dehumidifiers which are available for hearing aids:
Clean out the dirt buildup and wax
Using a soft cloth to wipe your hearings aids on a daily basis is fine. But do a more thorough cleaning once a year to clear out wax, dust, dirt, and other contaminants. A quick rubdown all the time is not enough. So, use the cleaning kit supplied to you when you bought your hearing aids from your hearing instrument specialist. The tools are:
These tools will help you clean out every tiny opening, like the vents and microphone. Earmolds, if you have them, can be removed and washed, occasionally, in mild, soapy water. Be careful, though; you may need a professional to do this to avoid damage. Day to day, however, the earmolds can be wiped with a soft cloth. If you experience significant earwax buildup, you may need specialized cleaning cloths or tools from your hearing instrument specialist for your kind of hearing aids. If you are unsure, you might need to call a professional hearing instrument specialist for cleanings, instead.
Make a service call
Don’t just dehumidify and thoroughly clean your hearing aids. Also make a service call in spring. Your hearing instrument specialist can look over your hearing aids and see if any maintenance needs to be done beyond your own efforts. The hearing aid specialist can assess whether or not your hearing aids are in good working order. It might include replacing plastic tubing and microphone screens. They can also run an ANSI test to be sure your hearing aids are running up to spec. Such efforts will certainly extend the life of your hearing aids. However, your hearing aids can get so they are near the end of their life-cycle and require replacement. Contact your hearing instrument specialist at Pure Sound Hearing Aids for quality checks on your hearing aid devices.