You’ve taken your hearing test and you’ve selected a new pair of hearing aids. All the hard work is done now and you can now look forward to instantly better hearing right? Well, it’s important to be patient, because it takes time to adjust to new hearing aids.
Hearing aids are not like glasses, and there is an adjustment period to get through before you can really see the benefits. It can take as long as four months for you to get used to the sound of your devices.
Here are four tips to help you get used to your new devices:
1) You will eventually get used to all these new sounds
You must remember that people usually wait about seven years before they seek treatment for their hearing loss. In that time, they have usually gone year without hearing certain environmental sounds in such high fidelity.
As such, when people use hearing aids for the first time, every little sound they had forgotten about is suddenly bought to the forefront. From barking dogs to ticking clocks, the sheer amount of now-perceptible sounds might seem overwhelming.
Rest assured that after a period of prolonged use, these sounds will fade into the background as your brain gets used to their presence again.
2) Keep wearing your devices
When you put your hearing aids on for the first time, do so alone in the home so that you may have time to get accustomed to how much louder the sounds are. Once you have had some time to practice operating them, test them out in a low-risk social setting, perhaps by having a close friend over for coffee. It is a good idea to practice like this before you take them outside or to a place where there are more people around.
It’s also important to wear your hearing aids regularly if you want to decrease the time it takes for your brain to learn how to work with the hearing aid. Those who do this adjust to their hearing aids more quickly. Having said that, try not to wear them all day for the first few weeks. Gradually increase the time you use them in order to give your brain a rest from all the new sounds.
3) Talk us at Evergreen Audiology and other hearing aid users
It is expected that you will need to return to visit us in the weeks following the first wear to ensure that your hearing aids are still fitted properly. This is also a good opportunity to talk to our team about your experiences using the hearing aid. The more information you can give us, the better we can adjust your settings to maximize benefit to you.
You might also find it helpful to talk to other hearing aid users about their experiences when wearing hearing aids for the first time. Their advice will no doubt help you adjust better to your hearing aids, as well as give you a vital dose of perspective that no one else can give.
4) Make a plan and stay positive
Commit yourself to wearing the hearing aids according to a set schedule and stick to it. If you have an idea of what to expect, as well as an organized plan of action, it will help you get through those tricky first few weeks.
Although you should temper your expectations before wearing your hearing aids, try to stay positive while wearing them. It’s a bit of a cliché, but hearing aids really are an investment. They will not deliver instant benefits, but you will slowly begin to rely on them for improving your hearing, to the extent that it will be difficult to leave the house without them.
This is where they really start to improve quality of life not only for you, but for the people around you that you care about. You will be able to reconnect with those around you on a level unavailable to you when you were struggling with hearing loss. It’s important not to lose sight of that goal as you enter this adjustment period. Stick at it. It will be worth it in the end.
For help in adjusting to your hearing aids, a refitting, or for just an opportunity to talk about your experience, we’re here to help you! Contact Evergreen Audiology to schedule an appointment.