Man having troubles with his hearing aids while trying to communicate with his friend.

Have you ever had your internet disappear just as you’re almost to the best part of your favorite Netflix show? You sit and watch that spinning circle instead of learning about who won that cooking competition. And so you just wait. Maybe it’s your modem, could be your router, possibly it’s the internet company, or maybe it’ll just fix itself. It kind of stinks.

When technology breaks down, it can be very frustrating. The same is definitely true of your hearing aids. When they’re functioning correctly, hearing aids can help you remain connected with the ones you love and better hear co-workers when they talk to you.

But when they quit working, your hearing loss symptoms can suddenly become a lot more frustrating. The technology you’re counting on has failed you. How do hearing aids just stop working? So how do you cope with that? Well, there are three common ways that hearing aids can fail, here’s how you can start to recognize and troubleshoot those issues.

Hearing aids can often have three common issues

Hearing aids are complex devices. Even still, there are some common issues that individuals with hearing aids might experience. Here’s what could be causing those issues (and what you can do to correct them).

Whistling and feedback

Maybe you suddenly begin to hear an awful high-pitched whistling while you’re attempting to have a chat with a friend or family member. Or perhaps you detect a little bit of feedback. You start to think, “this is weird, what’s up with this whistling”?

Here are three potential issues that could be causing this feedback and whistling:

  • The functionality of your hearing aid can be impacted by earwax accumulation in your ear canal. You’ll find this comes up fairly often. That includes causing your hearing aids to whistle or feedback. If possible, you can attempt to clean some earwax out of your ear or talk to us about the best way to do that (do not use a cotton swab).
  • The tubing that attaches the hearing aid with the earmold, on behind-the-ear models, can occasionally become compromised. Try to examine this tubing as closely as possible and make certain nothing is loose and the tube does not appear damaged.
  • You might not have your hearing aids seated properly in your ears. Try to take them out and re-seat them. If the fit isn’t right you may need to come in so we can help you get a better fit.

If these problems are not easily resolved, it’s worth talking to us about correcting the fit or sending your device in for maintenance (depending on what we think the root cause of that whistling or feedback may be).

Hearing aids not producing sound

The main objective of hearing aids is to produce sound. That’s what they’re made to do! Something has certainly gone wrong if you don’t hear any sound coming out of your hearing aid. So what could cause hearing aids to lose all sound? Here are several things to watch for:

  • Earwax buildup: Here we go again with the earwax! Take a close look to see if you find any earwax on the microphone or speakers. Keep your device very clean.
  • Your settings: If you have them, cycle through your personalized settings. It’s feasible your hearing devices are not on the right custom setting (so maybe your hearing aids think you’re in a gymnasium instead of at the kitchen table). The sound you’re hearing may be off as a consequence.
  • Batteries: Make certain your batteries are completely charged. And whether your batteries are rechargeable or not, it may be worth switching them out for fresh ones.
  • Power: Everybody forgets to turn their hearing aids on once in a while. Make sure that isn’t the issue. This possible problem can then be eliminated..

If these steps don’t address your issues, we might have the answers. Whether repair, maintenance, or replacement is your next step, we will be able to help you figure that out.

When you have your hearing aids in, your ears hurt

What if your hearing aids work perfectly, but whenever you put them in your ears, your ears begin aching? And you’re likely wondering why your hearing aids would hurt your ears. This sort of discomfort is not exactly conducive to using your hearing aids over the long term. So, what could be causing it?

  • Time: Sometimes, it just takes a little while to get used to your hearing aids. How long it takes will depend on the person. When you first get your new hearing aids, we can help you get a realistic concept of the adjustment period you can expect. If uncomfortable ears continue, talk to us about that too!
  • Fit: The fit of the device is the most obvious issue. Needless to say, when the fit is nice and snug, your hearing aids will work best. So when your hearing aids aren’t fitting very well, there can be some discomfort. Some models of hearing aid can be fit to the specific shape of your ears. Over the long run, you will have fewer problems if you have a good fit. If you come see us, we can help you achieve the best fit for your device.

Take your new hearing aid out for a test ride

One of the best ways to prevent possible problems with hearing aids is to take them out for a bit of a test drive before you commit. Most of the time we will have loaner pairs for you to try out before you make a decision.

Choosing the right hearing aids, adjusting them to fit your requirements, and helping with any ongoing issues you may have, are all things we will assist with. We will be your resource for any assistance you need.

And that’s a lot more than you will get with an over-the-counter hearing aid!

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