You finally obtained those new hearing aids. You’re finally going to be able to get back into the swing of your social life again. Now, you won’t be missing elements of conversations or going through awkward transitions. But your hearing aids just don’t seem quite right.
The reason for this is that it will usually take a bit of time before you get used to your new hearing aids. Often, this transition can be frustrating. You were so looking forward to enjoying your hearing again and it feels like it’s taking so long.
But there are a few tips you can use to decrease this transition period. Pretty soon, with a bit of practice, you will be paying attention to what you’re hearing rather than your hearing aids.
Start slowly with these tips
Your brain will take a little while to get accustomed to hearing certain sounds again regardless of how sophisticated your hearing aids are. Here are some ways you can intentionally give yourself time to adjust and take it slowly:
- Start with one-on-one conversations first: If you use your hearing aids while eating at a crowded restaurant on your first day using the devices, you could be discouraged, not because the hearing aids aren’t working. It’s just that it’s difficult for your ear and brain to deal with focusing on all those different voices. By starting out with one-on-one conversations you will make the transition smoother and also get a bit of extra practice.
- Wear your hearing aids only around the house initially: You’ll be less likely to encounter noise pollution at home and you will be able to have a greater amount of control over the sounds you’re hearing. This will help you concentrate on individual voices.
- Only wear your hearing aids for short amounts of time to begin with: A few hours at a time is the most you should use your hearing aids when you first get started. They might feel a little funny at first (this is normal), so it’s okay to start a little bit at a time. You can begin to use your hearing aids for longer durations as you become accustomed to them.
Tips that help you get added practice in
There are some things you can do, as with any skill, that can help you practice hearing. You may even have a little fun!
- Listen to an audiobook while you read the print version: This comparable exercise can also be very enjoyable. Reading and listening to an audiobook together will help your brain make associations between words and sound.
- Do some listening exercise: That’s right: sit in a quiet space and let your ears do the hearing. You can practice by focusing on trying to hear the fridge running or the cat meowing in another room or the birds chirping outside.
- Watch TV with the closed-captions enabled: It’s easy: put your hearing aids in, flip on the TV, and watch your favorite program. As you read the words you’ll also be hearing the actors talk, and your brain will start remembering what all these words sound like. This type of practice will help you adjust to understanding speech again.
Improve your hearing health with these tips
Obviously, one of the purposes of hearing aids is to keep your ears as healthy as possible. And there are some tips you can do to keep your ears happy as you get used to wearing your new hearing aid:
- Keep visiting us: There might be a temptation to think that once you’ve got the right hearing aids, you won’t need to see us anymore. This would be the worst idea. We can continue to monitor your hearing, make sure the fit is comfortable, and make any required adjustments. These follow up appointments are very important.
- If you’re experiencing any pain, be sure you document it and report it to us.: Because it shouldn’t be painful to wear hearing aids. So if you’re noticing any pain or something’s not fitting right, it’s important to let us know as soon as possible.
Be patient, and work up to full-time hearing aids
Your goal here will be to work your way up to wearing your hearing aids all of the time. Everybody’s unique but the slow and steady approach usually works best. You’ll want to get personalized advice from us on the best way for you to get used to your new hearing aid.
These tips will help you live a more enjoyable and enriched life with your new hearing aids.