Tanya is being measured for a new set of hearing aids by her hearing specialist. And it’s the reason for some anxiety. Her anxiety isn’t actually that bad. But she’s never had to use hearing aids before, and she’s somewhat worried about how comfortable she’ll feel with a high tech gadget inside of her ears, especially since she’s never been a big fan of earbuds or earplugs.
Tanya’s doubts are not unusual. Many first-time hearing aid users have doubts about the comfort and general fit of their hearing aids. Tanya has every intention of wearing her hearing aids. Now she won’t need to crank the television up so loud that it bothers her family or even the neighbors. But will those hearing aids be fit her ears comfortably?
Adapting to Hearing Aids For The First Time
So, is wearing hearing aids uncomfortable? The short response is: some individuals experience them as a little uncomfortable when they first wear them. Initial levels of comfort will vary because, as with many things in life, there’s an adjustment period. But in time, you’ll get used to the feeling of your hearing aids and become more comfortable.
At times it’s just good to know that these adjustments are coming. Knowing what you should expect will help your adjustment period be easier.
There are two steps to your adjustment:
- Becoming accustomed to a hearing aid in your ear: There might be some moderate physical discomfort when you first begin wearing your hearing aid, and your hearing specialist may recommend you start off wearing your hearing aids for only part of the day. That being said, there shouldn’t be any pain involved. You should get in touch with your hearing specialist if your hearing aid is causing pain.
- Adjusting to the enhanced sound quality: In some situations, the improved sound quality takes some adjusting 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 might sound a little loud at first or there could be frequencies of sound your not accustomed to hearing. Initially, this can be annoying. For instance, one patient reported that he could hear his hair rubbing against his coat. This is not abnormal. After a few weeks, your brain will filter out the noises you don’t want to tune in to.
In order to better your overall comfort and speed up the adjustment period, get in touch with your hearing specialist if you’re having trouble with the physical positioning or sound quality of your hearing aids.
How Can I Improve The Comfort of My Hearing Aids?
Over the years, luckily, there are a few techniques that have worked fairly well.
- Get the right fit: Fitting your ears comfortably is what hearing aids are made to do. It may take a few visits with your hearing specialist to get everything functioning and fitting just right. You might also want to consider a custom fit hearing aid for optimal effectiveness and comfort.
- Practice: Once you get your hearing aids, the world won’t sound quite the same. And it may take some time for your ears to adjust, particularly when it comes to the spoken word. In order to get the hang of it a little more quickly, there are a number of practices you can do including watching a movie with caption or reading along with an audiobook.
- Start slow: You don’t need to use your hearing aids 24/7 when you first get them. You can take your time and work your way up to it. From one to four hours every day is a good way to start. Inevitably, you will be wearing your hearing aids all day, when you become comfortable with them.
You’re Hearing Aids Can be More Comfortable
Your hearing aids may feel a little awkward for the first few days or weeks. Pretty soon you’re hearing aids will become a comfortable part of your everyday life and the sooner you make the adjustments, the sooner this will occur. In order to really make that transition, it’s critical that you wear them every day.
Before long all you will have to consider is what you hear, not how you hear it.
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