Tanya is visiting her hearing specialist, being measured for her very first set of hearing aids. And she’s feeling a little anxious. Not, you know, a lot of anxiety. But hearing aids are new to her, and she’s somewhat stressed that she will feel uncomfortable with a high tech gizmo inside of her ears, especially since she’s never been a huge fan of earplugs or earbuds.
These worries are not only felt by Tanya. Fit and overall comfort are worries for many first time hearing aid users. Tanya wants to wear her hearing aid. She’s looking forward to hearing her son’s jokes and listening to her television at a volume That won’t cause trouble with the neighbors. But will those hearing aids be fit her ears comfortably?
How to Adjust When You First Use Your Hearing Aids
So, are hearing aids uncomfortable? Put simply: some people experience them as a bit uncomfortable at first. Initial levels of comfort will vary because, like many things in life, there’s a period of adjustment. But in time, you’ll become accustomed to the feeling of your hearing aids and become more comfortable.
Knowing that these adjustments are coming can help ease some of the stress. Knowing what you should expect will help your adjustment period be easier.
Adapting to your hearing aid includes two phases:
- Becoming comfortable with an improved quality of sound: In some situations, the improved sound quality takes a little getting used to. If you’re like most people, you put off on getting hearing aids, and you’re not used to hearing a full range of sounds anymore. It may sound a little loud at first or there may be frequencies of sound your not used to hearing. Initially, this can be rather distracting. For instance, one patient complained that he could hear his hair rubbing against his jacket. This is normal. After a few weeks, your brain will filter out the noises you don’t want to tune in to.
If either the quality of sound or the physical placement of the hearing aids is annoying you, it’s critical to speak with your hearing specialist about adjustments to increase your all-around comfort and progress the adjustment period.
Can I Make my Hearing Aids More Comfortable?
Fortunately, there are a few strategies that have proven to be quite successful over the years.
- Practice: The world may sound just a little bit different once you get your hearing aids. And it might take a while for your ears to adjust, particularly when it comes to speech. In order to get the hang of it more quickly, there are numerous practices you can do like watching a movie with caption or reading along with an audiobook.
- Start slow: You don’t have to wear your hearing aids 24/7 at first. You can build up to that. Start by wearing your hearing aid for one to four hours a day. That said, you’ll want to work up to wearing your hearing aids all day, but you don’t have to start there.
- Get the right fit: Hearing aids are made to fit your ears well. It could take several visits with your hearing specialist to get everything working and just the right fit. And for optimal comfort and effectiveness, you might want to consider a custom fit hearing aid.
You’re Hearing Aids Can be More Comfortable
Your hearing aids might feel a little awkward for the first few days or weeks. But the faster you adapt to your new hearing aids, the faster they’ll become a comfortable part of your day to day life. In order to really make that transition, it’s critical that you wear them every day.
Soon all you will have to think about is what you hear, not how you hear it.