Your hearing aids help you hear and understand the world around you. Around 4 million people invest in hearing aid technology each year, and hearing aids are amazing devices that can literally transform your life and allow you to experience all of the beautiful things you love most. But they need a little help. Like any investment, you have to put a little love and effort into your hearing aids to keep them in tip-top shape.

Over time, dirt, debris, and earwax can impact the performance of your hearing aid and lead to sound quality degradation, a decreased lifespan, and some nasty hygiene issues. Don’t worry! There are some basic steps you can take to ensure that your hearing aids stay clean and free of debris. Today, we’re going to go over some basic tips to help you maintain your hearing investment.

Make Sure You Have the Right Tools

First things first, you need the right set of tools to perform basic cleaning and maintenance on your hearing aids. In general, you have to worry about the three big common enemies of hearing aids — moisture, earwax, and dirt/debris. It’s important to remember that, while these tools can help, there are some hearing aid cleaning issues that will require you to connect with an expert Audiologist.

Here are the tools you should have on hand:

  • A soft and dry cloth. Please don’t use tissues with any ointments or lotion in them. You want a dry cloth that’s free of any moisture.
  • A wax pick and brush. You can pick these up at our office if you don’t have any on hand.
  • A humidifier or drying area.

Set Up a Basic Routine

The easiest (and most effective) way to keep your hearing aids cleaned is to establish a basic routine.

  • Clean your device at the beginning/end of the day: Any good habit starts with regularity. You should either clean your hearing aids every night (giving them time to dry off for hours while you sleep) or morning (giving them time to dry off while you perform the rest of your personal hygiene routine). Start by wiping the device down with a dry cloth. Remember to use a wax pick or brush if you notice any earwax buildup. Hearing aid malfunctions are often due to earwax buildup. Finally, take the batteries out (this conserved battery life) and place the hearing aids in a cool, dry location (such as by a humidifier or in a designated drying area).
  • Take off your device during your hygiene routines: This is incredibly important! Take your device off while you perform basic hygiene routines. The last thing you want is to expose your device to moisture in the shower.
  • Avoid moisture, heat, and extreme cold: You probably already know that you should take your hearing aids off before you jump into the pool or take a shower, but you should also remember not to leave them in extreme temperatures. So, if you take those hearing aids off to have a dive in the nice cool pool in the middle of summer, remember to put them somewhere in the cool shade.

Contact A Professional for a Semi-regular Cleaning

In addition to basic cleaning, you should schedule semi-regular professional cleanings. Remember, your hearing aids are a significant investment that improves your quality-of-life. Take care of them like you would any significant investment. If you have any questions about daily maintenance, cleaning routines, or you need to schedule a professional cleaning, contact us.

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Dr. Kalyn Bradford Au.D.

Dr. Kalyn Bradford is the director of hearing aid services here at Physician's Hearing Care. She completed her externship with Physician's Hearing Care in 2013 and subsequently joined the practice in 2014 after graduating with her doctoral degree in audiology from Louisiana Tech University. She joined PHC as a clinical audiologist, where she performed comprehensive audiological exams and specialized in helping patients to hear better using the latest hearing aid technology available. She has carried that experience into her current role as director of hearing aid services, where she does an excellent job managing the audiologists to ensure that all patients are treated with the best hearing care possible.