If you or someone you care about uses a hearing aid, you may be interested to know what kinds of hearing aid accessories are out there to help you care for this most important piece of equipment.
It’s understandable that the idea of there being accessories that are needed to care for one’s hearing aid seems like a stretch of the imagination. After all, how much care can a hearing aid actually need?
You put in fresh batteries, turn it on, use it, take it off at night, wipe it down and you’re done, right? Wrong.
There is much more involved in the care of a hearing aid than you might originally have expected, and for good reason; the ear is a delicate instrument and you don’t want to do any further damage to your ears by misusing your hearing aid, which means that it is important to make sure that you take care of your hearing aid properly.
First consider the fact that the ear is continually producing oil through glands located behind the ears; this oil is part of what makes you smell like you and not like someone else.
While you may not notice the smell it is there, just within the human range of scent and it is suspected that there is actually a relation between these oils and the attraction that some people find for each other.
The point is that these oils tend to build up and seeing that hearing aids traditionally tuck behind the ear, they tend to get oily after a while and need to be cleaned, which is where the concept of hearing aid cleaners come into play.
Hearing aid cleaners are specially formulated substances that will remove this waxy build-up from your hearing aid so that it can continue to work properly.
Of course these cleaners can then affect the skin behind the ears; drying it out and causing it to flake, which is where you may be in need of ear cream or lotion to counter the drying effects of the cleaners.
While most cleaners dry fairly fast, it is a sure bet that at some point you might get your hearing aid wet; forgetting to take it off when you get in the shower, getting caught in the rain, or falling into a pool.
So what happens then? Well, luckily there is another accessory known as a hearing aid dryer. This nifty device sees to it that your hearing aid dries out properly (including all of the electronic circuitry). Just stick your hearing aid in, flip the switch, and wait until it is finished.
Then of course there are batteries to keep your hearing aid working properly.
You always want to have extras on hand, just in case. And how about a case to hold your hearing aid when you are not using it?
Whether you choose a cloth pouch or a plastic container, it is important to have a special place to store your hearing aid so that you do not accidentally misplace it.
Yes, as you can see, there are plenty of accessories that are needed to take proper care of your hearing aid, and it makes sense to invest in these because you have already invested a large amount of money in your hearing device, so why not give it the kind of care that it deserves?
After all, it is helping you to regain your sense of hearing, and even one hundred years ago, you would not have had this kind of opportunity.
For millennia individuals have suffered from hearing loss. For whatever reason people have been born without completely working auditory systems, brain damage that affects the sound processing centers of their brain, a miss-firing of the auditory nerve or blockages and/or malformations of the outer, middle or inner ears.
It used to be that those who were born without the ability to hear were seen as being touched by the gods.
Today these same people are touched by an auditory specialist who can conduct simple procedures to help them regain their hearing. And those for whom regular procedures do no good, there is the relatively modern invention of the hearing aid.
The first hearing aids were incredibly bulky. They had to be carried by the person using them, usually in a pouch or sling because they were too big to fit over the ear.
As technology has increased, hearing aids have gotten smaller and smaller, until today they can tuck behind the ear with hardly anyone noticing.
In fact, there are even hearing aids that can be tucked directly into the outer auditory canal and which are invisible unless you truly know what you are looking for.
These kinds of hearing aids can make all the difference to someone who needs help in distinguishing sounds but who is unwilling to admit that they need a hearing aid thanks to their association of them as being something only old people need.
The point is, you’ve paid a good amount for your hearing aid, and why not keeps your investment clean and safe using the hearing aid accessories that are recommended to keep it in its best possible working condition?
Don’t Overlook the Importance of Hearing Aid Batteries
Hearing aid batteries are a vital part of the hearing aid itself.
Without power from the battery, the whole device is essentially useless. In fact, they’re so important that a lot of people who wear a hearing aid keep a hearing aid battery tester handy.
That way they can tell when the battery is beginning to run out of power, then they can be prepared with spare batteries when it needs to be replaced.
The length of time that hearing aid batteries will last depends on the style of hearing aid being worn.
The smaller hearing aids that fit into the ear canal have a shorter battery life, the reason is that these are smaller batteries and don’t have as much of the power producing components.
Older styles of hearing aid batteries used mercury to power the device, but there are newer zinc batteries that are much more effective and therefore more commonly used.
Something called zinc air is the secret behind zinc batteries.
This is a mixture of oxygen in the air along with the zinc present inside the battery.
This produces a reaction that powers the battery, they have about twice the life of the conventional mercury batteries.
You’ll find that zinc hearing aid batteries have a color coded tab, one of the reasons for this is so you can know the size of the battery. However, it also prevents air from entering the battery until you’re ready to start using it.
As soon as the tab is pulled off, oxygen starts to enter the battery. As the oxygen combines with the zinc, the battery becomes activated. For this reason the tab should not be removed until you’re ready to use it so it doesn’t start losing power.
Most hearing aids today use one of four different sizes of batteries that are readily available. There’s a specific size of battery for every type of hearing aid out there.
A number 10 battery with a yellow color code is the smallest you can purchase. The largest size is 675 and is labeled in blue.
The small sizes are most commonly used for the smaller digital hearing aids that go into the ear canal, the large sizes are used for the behind the ear hearing aids.
The larger sizes are longer lasting since there is room to hold more zinc inside the battery. However, they are a lot more bulky.
Many people would rather change the battery more often and have a less noticeable hearing aid.