Have you recently been fitted with a new pair of hearing aids? Welcome to a brand-new world of clear sound, keeping up with conversations, and staying connected to your friends and loved ones. Hearing aids are the most common form of treatment for hearing loss, and these spectacular devices bring invaluable benefits beyond just access to clear sound.
The Hearing Loss Association of America estimates that people wait an average of seven years before they decide to seek treatment for hearing loss. During this time, your brain may have gotten used to hearing muffled or incomplete sounds and speech. For this reason, the process of adjusting to new hearing aids requires patience in order to experience the full benefits.
Here, we offer some tips for adjusting to a new pair of hearing aids.
Fitting is an Ongoing Process
With your new pair of hearing aids, keep in mind that fitting is an on-going process. Our team at Able Hearing is here to ensure that your hearing aids are the right devices to meet your specific hearing needs. Fitting refers to more than just the physical feel of the hearing aids in your ears – though this is also an important aspect. We want to be sure that the hearing aids perform as they are meant to, ensuring that your access to sound is natural and clear. In the first few weeks with your new hearing aids, take note of moments of physical discomfort as well as your access to sound. Visit us to make tweaks to your hearing aids to ensure the best fit.
Start Off Slowly – and Quietly!
Keep in mind that your brain needs time to get used to hearing properly again. For this reason, everything may seem very loud when you are first fitted for hearing aids, but we do advise that you do not make too many adjustments to the volume. Give yourself time to re-adjust to hearing clearly.
Additionally, it is important to give yourself time to re-learn the sounds of different listening environments. Start off in quiet places, such as your own home, and get used to hearing the different house noises, beeps, and alerts in your own space. It may be overwhelming to take your new hearing aids to a rock concert right away!
Hearing clearly again may be overwhelming and you may find yourself tired out after a day of access to sounds you’d previously missed. Give yourself breaks so that you do not experience cognitive fatigue.
Commit to Wearing Your Hearing Aids Every Day
Even with breaks, make a commitment to yourself to wear your hearing aids every single day. Hearing aids are meant to be worn throughout the day and taken out at night. (That being said, be sure to complete your morning washroom routine before putting in your hearing aids, as moisture may harm your hearing aids!)
At first, your voice may sound odd with your new hearing aids. To get used to your hearing aids, here are a few things to practice. Read to yourself or to your grandkids to familiarize the experience of your own voice. While watching movies or TV, put on the captions to help you follow along with the audio.
Eventually, you’ll feel more confident with your new hearing aids. Wear them on a short walk and reconnect with the sounds of nature and traffic. Take them to the grocery store and experience the joy of speech recognition with the cashier.
Practice Conversations with Your Loved Ones
You may have missed a lot in conversations before – but no more! Practice conversations with your loved ones to experience the benefits of your hearing aids. Start off small with a one-on-one coffee at home, and graduate your way to a dinner with a small group of friends. Use this opportunity to learn more about your hearing aid’s features and options, and make adjustments to your listening experience as necessary.
Visit Us at Able Hearing
Remember – adjusting to hearing aids does not happen overnight! It is an on-going process to figure out the best practices for you. Eventually, you will work your way up to wearing your hearing aids every day, and you’ll find them to be an indispensable part of your life, from your favorite activities to a boisterous dinner party with friends. Our team at Able Hearing is always here to help you with your adjustment process – reach out to us for support!