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Health

3 steps to keep hearing aids clean, performing well

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Want your hearing aids to last longer and work better? Invest time to follow your audiologist’s instructions to maintain them, recommends the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). All types of hearing devices need care, including hearing aids with earmolds, which are devices that pair with some hearing aids for a custom fit, based on the type of hearing loss.

For optimum performance, ASHA recommends:

1. Clean your hearing aids often. ASHA says, “Use a soft, dry cloth. Check for dirt and grime. Remove your earmolds from the hearing aids to clean them with mild soap. Dry them carefully using a forced air blower, not a hair dryer, which is too strong and can damage them.” Once dry, return them to the hearing aids.

2. Keep your hearing aids dry. “Use a drying container to keep moisture from building up inside the aids. Take the batteries out before putting your aids in the containers.”

3. Check the batteries. “Batteries should last one to two weeks. Check them with a battery tester. You’ll hear best when the batteries are at full strength. Always keep spare batteries with you. Store them in a cool, dry place. Batteries are toxic, so handle them carefully, and dispose of properly.”

Sometimes patients report hearing “feedback,” which is a whistling noise when sound seeps out of the earmold and goes back into the microphone. “You won’t hear feedback when your hearing aids fit well,” ASHA explains. If it does happen, turning down the volume may help.

ASHA recommends making routine appointments with your audiologist, to check your hearing and fix any problems with the hearing aids.

Susan Rogan Hearing : 319 W. Ogden Avenue, Westmont, IL 60559 : 630.969.1677; and 419 N. La Grange Road, La Grange Park, IL 60526 : 708.588.0155 : www.susanroganhearing.com.