You’ve been waiting for this day for quite a while. You received your new hearing aids. You’re so thrilled to be able to jump into your social life again. Now, you won’t be missing parts of conversations or going through uncomfortable transitions. But your hearing aids just don’t seem quite right.
The reason for this is that it will normally take a bit of time before you get used to your new hearing aids. Sometimes, this transition can be annoying. After all, there was so much you were excited to do, and that adjustment period just feels so slow.
But there are some tips you can practice to decrease this transition period. With a little practice, you can quickly get yourself to a place where you’re thinking less about your hearing aids, and tuning in to what you’re hearing.
Start slowly with these tips
Your brain will take a little time to get used to hearing certain sounds again no matter how sophisticated your hearing aids are. Here are some ways you can intentionally give yourself time to adjust and take it slowly:
- Use your hearing aids for a short duration: When you’re just beginning, you can practice by wearing your hearing aids for just a few hours at a time. Your hearing aids will probably feel a little strange in your ears for a while so beginning slowly is fine. As your hearing aids become more comfortable, you can wear them for longer durations.
- Use your hearing aids only around the house at first: You’ll be less likely to encounter noise pollution at home and you will be able to have a better amount of control over the sounds you’re hearing. This means you can focus on one voice at a time.
- At first, try to focus on one-on-one conversations: You could be setting yourself up for frustration if you use your hearing aids in a noisy setting on the first day. When the brain needs to pay attention to all those voices, it can become overloaded at first. By beginning with one-on-one conversations you will make the transition easier and also get a little additional practice.
Get extra practice with these tips
There are some things you can do, as with any skill, that can help you with hearing aid practice. Some of these are even enjoyable!
- Do some listening practice: That’s right: Go somewhere a little quiet and take in the sounds around you. You can practice by concentrating on trying to hear the refrigerator running or the cat meowing in the other room or the birds chirping outside.
- Watch TV with the closed-captions enabled: It’s easy: put your hearing aids in, turn on the TV, and watch your favorite program. Your brain will begin remembering what certain words sound like when you read along with the voices you’re hearing. This can give you some practice hearing and getting used to speech.
- Read along with the printed book while you listen to the audiobook.: This is a very similar exercise (and allows you to have some fun reading while you’re at it). Reading and listening to an audiobook simultaneously will help your brain make links between sounds and words.
Tips to keep your hearing health strong
Obviously, one of the purposes of hearing aids is to keep your ears as healthy as you can. And there are some tips you can do to keep your ears happy as you get accustomed to wearing your new hearing aid:
- If you have any pain, be sure you document it and report it to us.: Your hearing aids shouldn’t hurt. So it’s important to report any issues with fit or any pain right away.
- Keep visiting us: You may not think you need to get hearing exams anymore after you get your hearing aids. Nothing could be further from the truth. We can help adjust your hearing aids, keep the fit comfortable, and continue to check in on your hearing. These follow up visits are very important.
Go slow and maximize your time as you get accustomed to your hearing aids
Your goal here will be to work your way up to using your hearing aids all of the time. Everybody’s different but the slow and steady strategy often works best. Understanding the best ways to get comfortable with your new hearing aids is something we can help you with.
Following these tips (and tips like them) can help ensure that you enjoy having your hearing aids and that you keep wearing them because they continue to improve your life.