Three Ways Hearing Aids Can Malfunction

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 movie? You sit there and watch that spinning circle instead of finding out who won that cooking competition. And so you just wait. Is it your internet provider, modem, router, or maybe it will simply come back on its own? It’s not a great feeling.

When technology malfunctions, it can be very frustrating. Your hearing aids certainly fall into this category. Most of the time, your hearing aids will provide you with the means to stay connected to loved ones, have conversations with co-workers, and keep up with your neighbors.

But when they stop working, your hearing loss symptoms can suddenly become much more frustrating. The technology you’re depending on has let you down. Why would your hearing aids just quit working? So what can you do? Here are the three prevalent ways your hearing aids can fail and how to diagnose and identify them.

Three common issues with hearing aids (and some possible solutions)

Hearing aids are sophisticated devices. Even still, there are some common issues that people with hearing aids may encounter. Let’s have a look at possible causes of these problems and potential fixes.

Whistling and feedback

Maybe you suddenly start to hear a terrible high-pitched whistling while you’re trying to have a chat with a friend or family member. Or perhaps you notice a little bit of feedback. And so you think, “Why am I hearing whistling in my hearing aids? This is strange”.

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

  • You may not have your hearing aids seated properly in your ears. Try removing them and putting them back in. You can also try turning the volume down (if this works, you may find some temporary relief, but it also likely means that the fit isn’t quite right and you should speak with us about it).
  • The tubing that attaches the hearing aid with the earmold, on behind-the-ear models, can occasionally become compromised. Have a close look to identify whether the tube might have separated or might be damaged somehow.
  • The functionality of your hearing aid can be impacted by earwax accumulation in your ear canal. You’ll notice this comes up pretty regularly. That includes causing your hearing aids to whistle or feedback. You can try to clear some of the earwax out (never use a cotton swab) and if that doesn’t work out, you can get some assistance from us.

If these issues are not easily resolved, it’s worth speaking with us about correcting the fit or sending your device in for servicing (depending on what we determine the underlying cause of that whistling or feedback might be).

No sound coming from your hearing aids

The main purpose of hearing aids is to produce sound. That’s their main function! Something has certainly gone wrong if you can’t hear any sound coming from your hearing aid. So what could cause hearing aids to lose all sound? Well, there are a couple of things:

  • Earwax buildup: Here we go again with the earwax! Have a close look to see if you discover any earwax on the microphone or speakers. You want to make sure the device is good and clean.
  • Power: Everyone forgets to turn their hearing aids on once in a while. Check for this first. This potential issue can then be eliminated..
  • Batteries: If you have rechargeable batteries, make sure that they’re completely charged. And whether your batteries are rechargeable or not, it may be worth swapping them out for new ones.
  • Your settings: If you have them, flip through your personalized settings. Your hearing aids may think you’re in a huge room when you’re actually in a little room because the setting isn’t right. This incorrect setting could throw off the sound you’re hearing.

We are here for you if these steps don’t clear your issues up. We’ll be able to help you find out the next steps, and whether maintenance, repair, or replacement is required.

Painful ears when you’re wearing your hearing aids

What if your hearing aids are working fine, but every time you put them in your ears, your ears begin aching? And you’re most likely thinking: why do my ears ache when I use my hearing aids? You’re not as likely to wear your hearing aids every day if they hurt your ears. So, why do they ache?

  • Time: Getting used to your hearing aids will take some time. How long it takes will depend on the individual. When you first get your hearing aids, we can help you get a reasonable idea of the adjustment period you can anticipate. If uncomfortable ears continue, speak with us about that as well!
  • Fit: The most obvious problem can be the fit. Naturally, when the fit is nice and tight, your hearing aids will work best. So when your hearing aids aren’t fitting quite right, there can be some pain. Many hearing aids can be personalized to your specific ears. The better the fit, the fewer issues you’ll have with pain over the long run. We will be able to help you get the best possible fit from your devices.

Take your new hearing aid out for a test ride

Before you decide on a pair of hearing aids, it’s a good idea to try them out for a while. In the majority of instances we’ll let you test out a set of devices before you decide that’s the pair for you.

As a matter of fact, we can help you determine the best kind of hearing aid for your requirements, adjust the fit to match your ears, and help you manage any ongoing problems you may have with your devices. We will be your resource for any help you need.

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

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.

Questions? Talk To Us.

    Delaney Hearing Center

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