Lots of people really enjoy winter! Well, if you have to go somewhere, it can definitely be difficult. Or if you don’t have the correct gear (or proper infrastructure). But there are plenty of fun things to do in those chillier winter months.
Still not convinced? Well, here are only a few instances of how cold weather can be enjoyable: you could go sledding or skiing. You could have some fun on a snowmobile! Or you could grab a pair of ice skates and spend a little time out on the ice. With the right gear, winter can be just as much of an outdoor season as spring, summer, or autumn (and the hot chocolate is so much more rewarding when you’ve been outdoors in the cold).
But that’s a significant caveat: you need the correct gear to stay comfortable. You may be thinking: Does my hearing aid count as “the right gear”… and if so, will cold air affect my hearing aids? Will the cold damage my hearing aids?
Most hearing aids are designed to be all-weather… to a point
Hearing aids are designed to be used full-time. They’re built so you can wear them to the grocery store, out for a hike, or simply around the house. Which means that hearing aid makers understand that these devices might take a beating. But just because hearing aids are designed to be worn all of the time doesn’t mean you should do anything drastic with them.
Most hearing aids are designed to be basically “all weather” as a result. The safe temperature range for most hearing aids is from -13 to 158 degrees Fahrenheit. There are some spots that will sometimes get colder than -13 but usually, that covers the broad range of temperatures.
You will be capable of hearing well in the majority of settings and that’s a wonderful thing. Now, you may be thinking: if that’s true, why don’t my hearing aids function as well in the cold? Well, drops in temperature will put stress on your devices, so while they may operate, they might not work optimally.
Some winter hearing aid advice
Luckily, there are some things you can do to help make sure your hearing aids continue to work at peak efficiency (or close enough) even in cold weather.
- Try not to let your hearing aid wet: When snow melts, it’s wet, so be careful about exposing your hearing aids to snow. If you’re going to ask, “Well, can I wear hearing aids when it’s raining or snowing”? Yes, you can. Most hearing aids are water resistant but not usually waterproof. So while your hearing aid will most likely be okay if it gets a little wet, you should dry it as soon as you can.
- Keep your hearing aids somewhere warm and dry when you aren’t using them: Your hearing aid will function better and with fewer problems if you keep moisture out of it. You’re most likely asking: “How do I eliminate moisture from my hearing aids”? In the majority of instances, you can dry it off and then put it somewhere warm and dry.
- Keep your hearing aids secured in your ear by utilizing accessories.: There are all kinds of straps and clips you can use to make sure your hearing aids stay in place. If you’re participating in any strenuous activities like snowboarding or sledding, this is particularly true.
- Check your batteries (and make sure they’re charged): Do hearing aid batteries freeze? Well, not really. But cold weather can drain your batteries faster than warm weather. So before you go out in the cold, be sure your battery is completely charged.
- Try to dawn a hat or earmuffs: Wearing a hat or earmuffs will keep both your ears and your hearing aid warm. And the warmer your hearing aids are, the more optimally they’ll be working. Your next question might be: can I wear ear muffs over my hearing aid without impacting my hearing? Well, it depends on the hearing aid, but in most cases, your hearing aids will still continue to work.
- Talk to us about the fit of your hearing aids: Hearing aids can sometimes become uncomfortable when they’re cold. Minimize any possible discomfort by getting help from us with the fit of your device.
So, if you’re wondering: how can I protect my hearing aids in the winter? That’s precisely what we’re going to find out.
If your hearing aid quits working, what should you do?
Sometimes, unfortunately, your hearing aid will quit working even when the weather is warm and dry. There are a few straightforward troubleshooting steps you can take (for example, make sure the batteries are charged and that your devices are nice and dry). If you still aren’t able to figure out why they’re not working, we should be able to help you with that.
You can still enjoy life even when it’s cold!
When it’s -10 degrees outside, it’s understandable that you would want to stay inside. Perhaps you aren’t a winter person. Maybe a delicious hot bowl of soup would do the trick. Perhaps you aren’t a big fan of snowmobiles. What’s important here is not to let issues with your hearing aid impact your quality of life, even during the winter.
That’s particularly true if you take care of your devices, and observe the tips outlined above. Contact us if you have any concerns about how your hearing aids may be impacted by the cold.
The content of this blog is the intellectual property of MedPB.com and is reprinted here with permission.
The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive a personalized free hearing test and hearing loss consultation, call today to set up an appointment.