Posted on Leave a comment

Here Are Things You Can Do At Home to Support Hearing Loss

If you or a loved one is experiencing hearing loss, you need support. Even if you are unable to visit an audiologist or other hearing healthcare specialist soon due to COVID-19 restrictions, you can take steps to support hearing loss at home. Experiencing hearing loss does not have to mean that you become reliant on others or that you lose your independence. It instead means you will need to find alternative solutions to the challenges of everyday life.

The following tips are simple, yet they can make a big difference for you and your loved one suffering from hearing loss:

  • Put alert systems in place.
    Those with hearing loss often cannot hear normal alarm systems like smoke alarms or carbon monoxide detectors. Special systems can be put into place that instead vibrate your bed, flash a bright light, or sound a very loud alarm to alert you of an emergency situation.
    Doorbell systems work in a similar fashion. Since you will likely no longer hear your doorbell, these systems use lights or vibrations to alert you of visitors. There is even a similar solution available for your everyday alarm clock. Now you don’t have to worry about sleeping in too late!
  • Make communication easier.
    One common solution for making communication easier with hearing loss is the use of hearing aids. They can be life changing! If you have hearing aids, be sure to wear them. Using your hearing aids more frequently will help you get used to them.
    If you do not have hearing aids and cannot visit a hearing specialist at this time, you can use other communication tools. Telephone amplifiers, extension ringers, and other assistive devices can make landline calls clearer. Most mobile phones and smartphones come with accessibility settings you can use to make it easier to use your phone. You can choose options like flash notifications, left/right balance to assist hearing when using headphones, and more.
  • Enable entertainment options.
    For many people, one of the first signs of hearing loss is being unable to hear their television or radio at a normal volume. In addition to turning up the volume, there are other options you can use to make it easier to enjoy entertainment once again. Check the sound settings on your television. Reducing the bass can help you hear higher-pitched sounds better. Many TVs also come with a “speech enhancement” setting that can make it easier for you to understand speech.
    You can also use subtitles on your television. If you have a hearing aid, many TVs can connect to hearing aids via a hearing loop so the sound is streamed directly to your hearing aids. If you do not have hearing aids, you might consider using headphones that allow you to adjust the volume and sound settings.

Of course, one of the keys to supporting hearing loss is to be patient–whether it is with yourself or a loved one. Hearing loss is a new experience that will require adjustments from everyone.

To learn more about how you can support hearing loss at home, especially during this unprecedented time, we welcome you to contact our hearing practice today.

Posted on Leave a comment

9 Tips for Taking Care of Your Hearing Aids at Home

With the current “stay at home” and “shelter in place” orders around the country, it can be difficult to see your hearing aid professional as often as usual. Even as states begin to ease restrictions and businesses cautiously start to reopen, it is best to avoid unneeded visits to places like stores and offices. Even with the best safeguards in place–like social distancing and a face covering–it is safest to avoid contact with anyone who could have COVID-19.

Because it is more challenging to see your hearing aid specialist, it is essential that you know how to take care of your hearing aids at home. While certain problems and emergency situations will need to be brought to a professional, some issues can be resolved on your own. One important way to prevent problems with your hearing aids is to properly maintain them.

While all hearing aids are subject to environmental factors, such as earwax, humidity, moisture, and debris, different types of hearing aids are particularly susceptible to certain types of problems. In-The-Ear (ITE) and Invisible-In-The-Canal (IITC) hearing aids are especially susceptible to earwax. On the other hand, devices that are worn over the ear are more frequently exposed to sweat, water, and physical debris.

No matter which type of hearing aid you have, you can take steps to keep your hearing aids working well. Here are a few simple tips for maintaining your hearing aids at home:

  1. Always handle your hearing aids with care. Although they are not necessarily fragile, they could break or become lost due to an ill-timed drop.
  2. Wash your hands before handling your hearing aids.
  3. Store your hearing aids in a safe, dry place when you are not wearing them. A small, plastic container, like the one your hearing aids likely came in, is perfect. Be sure to keep your hearing aids in a safe place, away from any pets or children.
  4. Turn off your hearing aids when you are not using them. This can help to extend the battery life.
  5. Consider using a cord-and-clip system. This attaches to your hearing aids on one end and clips to your clothing on the other end. If your hearing aids fall out, this system prevents them from falling and becoming lost or broken.
  6. If you often find yourself losing your hearing aids, consider painting them a bright color or adding a bright-colored dot sticker. This can help you find them more easily.
  7. Periodically clean the battery contacts in your hearing aids. Be sure to also remove any visible earwax or other debris with a clean cloth.
  8. Regularly change the filters or wax guards. This helps to remove wax and dirt that could interfere with sound quality.
  9. Do not wear your hearing aids while you shower, swim, use a blow dryer, or use hair spray.

With these easy tips, your hearing aids are likely to stay in good working order. To learn more about how you can take care of your hearing aids at home, we encourage you to contact our hearing practice today. We look forward to assisting you!

Posted on Leave a comment

ADAPTING TO YOUR NEW HEARING AIDS

CONGRATULATIONS ON YOUR NEW HEARING AIDS!  

If you experience hearing loss, getting hearing aids can be a big step forward. We know it will be a significant contributor to a new and improved quality of life, both for you and your loved ones.  

WHAT’S THAT SOUND? 

Even though they are a godsend, wearing hearing aids for the first time can be a little strange. You may hear sounds that you might not have heard for a long time, and it will take some getting used to. We want you to know that this is normal. It’s all part of the process, but we want you to know that the team at California Hearing Center is always here to help. 

Initially, the sounds you will hear will seem tinny and metallic. You will also be more aware of sounds and conversations going on around you. While it might be a little surprising at first, this is normal, as the brain is receiving more cues than it was with untreated hearing loss. 

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO ADJUST TO NEW HEARING AIDS?  

Much like getting a new prescription for glasses, hearing aids have an adjustment period. For most people, the adjustment period usually takes one to three days. By day four, you might still have some awareness, but this will soon dissipate.  

During this initial period, you might experience a slight itching in your ear canals as well. Your ears are unaccustomed to having something sitting inside them for prolonged periods, so this is completely normal. Because adapting to hearing aids is different for every individual, it’s best to put them in first thing in the morning and remove them at night. The more consistent you can be with your routine, the quicker you will adapt.  

By days five to seven, wearing your hearing aids should feel more natural. However, it is common at this point to suspect that you are not hearing as well or that the technology is not as clear as it was on the first day. This is expected, and it’s an indication that you are adapting.  

COMING BACK FOR YOUR FIRST ADJUSTMENT 

The initial hearing aid programming is designed to help ease you into better hearing.  

At your first “real-world” adjustment visit, we will fine-tune your technology with long-term settings. Your hearing provider will be eager to hear about your journey so far, so any observations, questions, or thoughts are encouraged.

Posted on Leave a comment

ADAPTING TO YOUR NEW HEARING AIDS

CONGRATULATIONS ON YOUR NEW HEARING AIDS!  

If you experience hearing loss, getting hearing aids can be a big step forward. We know it will be a significant contributor to a new and improved quality of life, both for you and your loved ones.  

WHAT’S THAT SOUND? 

Even though they are a godsend, wearing hearing aids for the first time can be a little strange. You may hear sounds that you might not have heard for a long time, and it will take some getting used to. We want you to know that this is normal. It’s all part of the process, but we want you to know that the team at California Hearing Center is always here to help. 

Initially, the sounds you will hear will seem tinny and metallic. You will also be more aware of sounds and conversations going on around you. While it might be a little surprising at first, this is normal, as the brain is receiving more cues than it was with untreated hearing loss. 

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO ADJUST TO NEW HEARING AIDS?  

Much like getting a new prescription for glasses, hearing aids have an adjustment period. For most people, the adjustment period usually takes one to three days. By day four, you might still have some awareness, but this will soon dissipate.  

During this initial period, you might experience a slight itching in your ear canals as well. Your ears are unaccustomed to having something sitting inside them for prolonged periods, so this is completely normal. Because adapting to hearing aids is different for every individual, it’s best to put them in first thing in the morning and remove them at night. The more consistent you can be with your routine, the quicker you will adapt.  

By days five to seven, wearing your hearing aids should feel more natural. However, it is common at this point to suspect that you are not hearing as well or that the technology is not as clear as it was on the first day. This is expected, and it’s an indication that you are adapting.  

COMING BACK FOR YOUR FIRST ADJUSTMENT 

The initial hearing aid programming is designed to help ease you into better hearing.  

At your first “real-world” adjustment visit, we will fine-tune your technology with long-term settings. Your hearing provider will be eager to hear about your journey so far, so any observations, questions, or thoughts are encouraged.