Three Ways Hearing Aids Can Fail

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 getting to the best part of your favorite Netflix movie? You sit there and watch that spinning circle instead of learning about who won that cooking competition. All you can do is wait around for it to come back. Perhaps it’s your modem, could be your router, possibly it’s the internet provider, or maybe it’ll just fix itself. It’s not a very good feeling.

Technology can be tremendously aggravating when it doesn’t work correctly. Your hearing aids definitely fall into this category. When they’re working correctly, hearing aids can help you stay connected with the ones you love and better hear co-workers when they speak to you.

But your symptoms of hearing loss can suddenly become very frustrating when your hearing aids quit working. You’ve been disappointed by the technology you depend on. Why would your hearing aids just stop working? So what should you do? Here are the three common ways your hearing aids can fail and how to troubleshoot and identify them.

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

Hearing aids are sophisticated devices. Even still, there are some common problems that people with hearing aids may experience. Here’s what might be causing those issues (and what you can do to fix them).

Whistling and feedback

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

Here are three potential problems that could be causing this whistling and feedback:

  • The tubing that attaches the hearing aid with the earmold, on behind-the-ear models, can occasionally become compromised. Try to examine this tubing as closely as possible and make certain nothing is loose and the tube does not appear damaged.
  • Earwax buildup in your ear canal can undermine the way your hearing aid functions. This is a fairly common one. That includes making your hearing aid whistle or feedback. If possible, you can attempt to clean some earwax out of your ear or talk to us about the best way to do that (do not use a cotton swab).
  • Your hearing aids may not be seated in your ears properly. Try to take them out and re-seat them. You can also try reducing the volume (if this works, you may find some temporary relief, but it also likely means that the fit isn’t quite right and you should talk to us about it).

If these issues are not easily resolvable, it’s worth talking to us about correcting the fit or sending your device in for maintenance (depending on what we determine the root cause of that whistling or feedback might be).

No sound coming from your hearing aids

The main objective of hearing aids is to produce sound. That’s what they’re made to do! So if you find yourself thinking, “I can’t hear any sound coming from my hearing aid,” well, then something is definitely not right. So what could cause hearing aids to lose all sound? Well, there are a couple of things:

  • Your settings: If you have them, flip through your custom settings. It’s possible your hearing devices are on the wrong custom setting (so perhaps your hearing aids think you’re in a gymnasium instead of around the kitchen table). The sound you’re hearing might be off as a consequence.
  • Earwax buildup: Here we go again with the earwax! Inspect your device for signs of earwax on the microphone or speakers or any sensitive bits. You want to be sure the device is nice and clean.
  • Batteries: Make sure your batteries are fully charged. And even rechargeable batteries should be swapped out on occasion.
  • Power: Look, we’ve all disregarded turning on the hearing aid before. Be sure that isn’t the problem. This potential issue can then be eliminated..

If these steps don’t correct your problems, we may have the solution. Whether repair, maintenance, or replacement is your next step, we will be capable of helping you figure that out.

When you have your hearing aids in, your ears hurt

Maybe your hearing aids are fine functionally but they hurt when they’re in your ears. And you’re most likely thinking: why do my ears hurt when I use my hearing aids? This type of discomfort is not exactly conducive to wearing your hearing aids on a day-to-day basis. So, why do they ache?

  • Fit: The most evident problem can be the fit. After all, most hearing aids work best when the fit is nice and snug. Which means that there can occasionally be pain involved in a poor fit. Many hearing aids can be personalized to your particular ears. Over the long haul, you will have fewer issues if you have a snug fit. If you come in for a consultation, we can help you get the best fit for your device.
  • Time: Getting accustomed to your hearing aids will take some time. Each person will have a different adjustment period. When you first get your hearing aids, we can help you get a reasonable idea of the adjustment period you can anticipate. Also, speak with us about any discomfort you may be having.

Bypass issues with a little test drive

One of the best ways to avoid possible issues with hearing aids is to take them out for a bit of a test run before you decide. In most cases we’ll let you try out a pair of devices before you decide that’s the set for you.

Choosing the right hearing aids, adjusting them to fit your needs, and helping with any extended issues you may have, are all things we will assist with. We will be your resource for any assistance you need.

And that’s probably more dependable than your internet company.

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.