Will wearing cheap hearing aids affect your health?
Hearing aids will not have any impact on the health of the body. It is not cheap hearing aids that are not good. The only thing matter is whether hearing aids are suitable or not. Of course, cheap hearing aids are not comfortable to wear. If the matching is not good, it will have an impact on deafness.
If it is big, it will be ear shattering, but if small, it will not be heard. Therefore, hearing aids must be tested and matched in a professional agent, which is suitable for your own hearing aids. Only in this way can it be helpful to wear them, and they will not become more and more deaf.
Hearing Aid Troubleshooting Tips
Has your hearing device developed an annoying whistle? Before making a special trip to the audiologist’s officer to get it fixed, it’s worth knowing that some problems have simple fixes. Take a look to see if you can sort these simple issues at home with minimal fuss and inconvenience. If the following tips don’t help, schedule an appointment with your audiologist to assist with your hearing aid repairs.
Q: My hearing aid no longer works. What can I do to fix it?
A: Common things are common, of which a dead battery heads the list. Remove the battery and wipe the contact with a clean dry cloth. Replace the battery with a new one that is within date, taking special care to insert it the correct way up, matching the symbols.
At the same time check the receiver tube for blockages. This is the length of tubing along which the amplified sound passes from the body of the hearing aid into your ear. It is prone to blockages, either from a buildup of earwax or condensation. Visually check the tubing and make sure it is clear. If it isn’t then insert a slim tool (inexpensive hearing aid maintenance kits are usually equipped with an appropriate tool) into the tubing and earmold to clean it. With the obstruction cleared there should be no further blockage to sound transmission into your ear.
If this fix and the new battery still doesn’t sort the problem then fair enough, you ruled out a simple fix and a trip to the audiologist is a good idea after all.
Q: My hearing device doesn’t make the sound as loud as it used to. What can I do?
A: If the amplified sound seems too quiet the two most likely causes are a blockage in the receiver tubing or your hearing has changed. As mentioned above, the receiver tube is the conduit along which the amplified sound travels. Any blockages in that tubing will act to deaden the sound, in the same way as putting your fingers in your ears would.
If you’ve carefully checked the tubing and it all seems in order, then consider the possibility that there’s been a change in your ability to hear and it is time to have a hearing checkup. Audiologists advise an annual hearing test.
Q: My hearing aid whistles and it’s driving me mad. How can I stop it?
A: This time it might not be the problem is with the hearing device but with wax in your ear canal or the way the device is inserted. Check to see you inserting the hearing device correctly and it sits where it should. Sometimes just removing the aid and the reinserting it correctly is all it takes to get whistle free sound. If you have no such luck then have your physician or hearing healthcare professional check your ear canal for wax build up and if necessary have the ears syringed.
Handling Hearing Aid Repairs
Here are some common problems encountered by hearing aid users that are often easily solvable, if you don’t have any luck with these solutions be sure to contact your audiologist.
• Feedback: This can happen when the sound being amplified by the hearing aid is picked up by microphone, it can result in an irritating ‘whistling’ sound. One possible cause is the earmolds not sitting correctly in your ear; try gently adjusting them or pushing them in. Another common problem that can create feedback is excessive earwax; make sure you keep your ears and hearing aid as clean as possible.
• Buzzing sounds: If your hearing aid has a loop setting, check that you haven’t accidentally activated it; this is a common cause of ‘buzzing’ sounds.
• Distortion or unclear sound: Make sure the volume is set at an appropriate level and is not too high or too low. Check that the batteries are in correctly; if that isn’t the problem try new batteries. Exposure to moisture can cause corrosion in the battery compartment, if your hearing aid is producing no sound at all, check for this. Always keep your aid as dry as possible.
• Behind-the-ear (BTE) users: If you have a BTE hearing aid, carefully remove the tubing and check for blockages or condensation build up by blowing gently through the tube. Be sure to check that the tubing is not squashed or twisted as this can also cause problems.
When to contact your audiologist
If none of these solutions have fixed your problem, it’s time to contact your audiologist. Many hearing aid warranties cover necessary repairs; it could even be something as simple as a programming issue. In cases of physical damage, many hearing care providers are able to conduct simple repairs themselves, so if you catch the problem early enough there may be no need to send your device back to the manufacturer. Contact your audiologist immediately if any of the following points apply to you:
• You have been comfortably using your hearing aid for a while and it suddenly starts to produce static; excessive feedback or volume disturbances
• You notice any cracks or holes in the faceplate of your hearing aid
• You have a BTE hearing aid and your tubing has become dislodged
Taking an Earmold Impression
Depending on the type of hearing aid you decide to purchase, an earmold impression may need to be taken. Do not be afraid. There is nothing scary about having an impression taken. It may feel a little bit weird or slightly awkward, but it will only last for a few minutes and then you are done. What does the process consist of? Let’s take a closer look.
1.Looking inside: Your hearing health professional is first going to look in your ears to ensure they are clear of any debris or excessive wax buildup. If there is anything present your hearing health professional will generally remove the wax to avoid the impression pushing the wax or object closer to the eardrum.
2.Placing of the otoblock: With a small pen light your hearing health professional will place a small otoblock, either a cotton ball on a string or foam ball on a string, into your ear and gently and slowly push it down your ear canal. This may feel a bit scratchy and may cause some people to cough, sneeze or gag because of the nerve endings it passes over in the canal.
3.Impression material in: Next, your hearing health professional will put the impression material in your ear. This is done through a large syringe with the mixed material or through an impression gun that mixes the material as it goes. The material will fill into your canal up to the otoblock and into the bowl and outer part of your ear.
4.Waiting game: You will now have to sit back and relax for a couple minutes. The material only takes a couple of minutes to set up and become solid, though still pliable, so close your eyes and be patient.
5.Removal: Your hearing health professional will now slowly and gently remove your earmold. To release the build up of pressure that has been created your hearing health professional will more than likely pull back on the upper part of your ear and at the same time start to pull up and out the mold from your ear.
Once the earmold is taken it is sent to the manufacturer to be made into your new hearing aids or the mold for your BTE. They can even be used to make hearing protection, earbuds and sleeping molds.
How Hearing Aids Work
There are many types and models of hearing aids made by many companies. But they all basically have the same parts and work in the same way.
Parts of a Hearing Aid
Hearing aids have three parts: the microphone, the amplifier and the speaker.
The microphone works like any other microphone. It picks up sounds and converts them into electrical signals. It is like a converter, it converts sounds into a signal that can be understood by the amplifier.
Just like in music equipment, the amplifier takes the converted signal from the microphone and increases it or makes it louder.
The speaker is like a mini-transmitter. Its job is to take the amplified signal and send it to the cochlea. The cochlea has hair cells (which aren’t hair at all) that convert the signal into neural signals for transmission to the brain. When the brain gets the neural signal it processes it and you “hear” the sound
Hearing Aid Technology
Gone are the days of the ear trumpet. Modern hearing aids are electronic and not mechanical devices. They all handle electrical signals. But, there are major differences in the way those electrical signals are processed. Older hearing aids use analog technology. Newer hearing aids utilize digital technology.
• Analog: Analog technology is the original electronic hearing aid technology. Analog devices transmit signals without changing the signal. In other words, analog devices don’t enhance or clarify sounds. They just pick up the signal, amplify it, and send it to the hair cells. The audiologist gives programming directions to the manufacturer when the hearing aids are ordered. These hearing aids come with different settings for different environments. This is because they cannot modify signals. Hearing aids using analog technology usually cost much less than hearing aids.
• Digital: Digital technology is a major improvement over analog technology. Digital hearing aids have a highly specialized microphone. This microphone not only picks up a signal but it breaks it down into a series of 1s and 0s that computers use to communicate. The signal that is sent to the amplifier includes the sound as well as information about the sound. The amplifier can detect problems in transmission and filter them out before sending them on to the cochlea. Because it is using computer language, your audiologist will program it. They can be programmed for special handling of specified tones or pitches. This means your audiologist can program them to your exact needs. If your hearing loss is not consistent across all frequencies, this represents a major improvement over analog technology. Newer technology generally comes with a higher price tag. However, most hearing aids sold today utilize digital technology.
What to Expect When You Purchase a Hearing Aid
If you’re suffering from hearing loss, it may be time to see an audiologist and possibly purchase a hearing aid. Having to wear a hearing aid can be the cause of some anxiety for many people. It brings on a lot of emotions such as anticipation and stress. If you are considering purchasing a hearing aid or need to update your current one, you need to understand what to expect. This will be a new piece of technology for you and you need to understand what it does and how to take care of it. Thus, it is important to have a realistic idea of what to expect when you receive a new hearing aid.
What should you expect?
So, what should you expect when you’re purchasing a hearing aid for the first time? Well, first, you won’t be expected to go at it alone. Your audiologist will be there to help guide you through the process. Your audiologist will go over the basics and check the way the hearing aid fits. They will also help you determine what settings are best and will program the hearing aid to work for you. Your audiologist can also show you how to make adjustments on your own too (so you can change settings at your leisure).
You’ll learn how to maintain the hearing aid as well. This includes basic maintenance like cleaning, as well as taking care of the batteries.
Hearing aid basics
Once you’ve purchased your hearing aid, you may be wondering how long it will take to get used to your new device. Be prepared, it may take up to a month before you are used to your new hearing. Of course, it all depends on you and your personality too. Every patient is different and experiences improve hearing in different ways. Sounds will be strange to you, the way you hear things will be completely different. While all these changes take some time to get used to, the human brain is very adaptable.
In general, your new hearing aid will improve your hearing to an extent where you are more aware of the noises in your normal life. It will seem to be noisier than usual and that can be distracting. You may even feel that some of these sounds are intrusive but you’ll learn how to filter out the background noise with time. It also means that you have to learn how to focus your hearing again. You want to hear some things and not everything. Thus, getting used to the new settings on your hearing aids will take some time and practice.
You may also be wondering if this will completely fix your hearing. There isn’t a simple answer to this question. While the amount of hearing a hearing aid restores varies from person to person, what you should know is that your new hearing aid will make you hear sounds you could not hear before. Does that mean you’ll hear perfectly? It is entirely possible.
Is Wearing a Hearing Aid Classified as a Disability?
Yet, the laws that govern the classification of disabilities seem to be very inadequate. Often, this has led to so many questions about the conditions that can fall under disabilities. One such problem is whether wearing a hearing aid can be classed as a disability. This article will answer this question and other commonly asked questions about hearing disability or impairment.
Hearing impairment as a disability
Different organizations have different classifications for disability. For example, according to the World Health Organization, any disability definition can be broken down into three categories:
* Impairment: This looks at the physical appearance of the body.
* Activity limitation: This deals with limited physical movements or hindered due to the impairment. Hearing difficulties fall under this category.
* Restriction in participation: This involves the notion that society has reduced your involvement in certain situations because of your impairment.
How much of hearing loss is a disability?
The issue is no longer whether hearing loss qualifies for disability, but when we can identify it as a disability. Without the right treatment, most hearing loss or impairment issues are degenerative. This means that they continue to deteriorate with time, and treatment only helps slow the process.
When can your loss of hearing be regarded as a disability? Again, this depends on who you’re asking and why. For example, to gain any form of benefits, there are certain levels that people wearing hearing aids need to reach. These are:
* Failure to repeat 40% of the words in a test for word recognition
* A hearing threshold that falls below 60 dB according to bone conduction.
* A hearing threshold of 90 dB or more according to an air conduction
Once a person reaches any of the three thresholds or levels above, they may be eligible to receive disability grants for their hearing impairment.
Would wearing a hearing aid be deemed a disability?
So, we are back to our main question – is wearing a hearing aid classed as a disability? We have already mentioned the different levels or thresholds that a person with a hearing impairment must meet for disability grants. The test to prove a person’s disability level is performed without the person wearing a hearing aid. According to the Social Security Regulations and Americans with Disabilities Act, wearing a hearing aid would not put you in the category of being disabled.
In most cases, hearing aids are worn to improve low-level hearing impairments that fall well below the thresholds set by the Act and Regulations for hearing disabilities. The logic here is that wearing a hearing aid helps to provide some assistance for hearing loss or impairment, and this eliminates, to some degree, the state of disability. Therefore, to answer the proposed question, you cannot be classified as having a disability just because you wear a hearing aid.
The disability and its protection
A lot of people have different ways of defining disability or what it constitutes. For most people, any form of disability that is not immediately visible is not taken seriously, ignored or sometimes even considered invisible. This has affected the kind of protection we make available to people with hearing impairment.
Therefore, considering everything we now know about hearing loss and hearing aids, it is essential to take enough time to think about your hearing condition. Regardless of hearing loss level, it should be immediately treated, as the situation may only worsen without the right care. If you already have a hearing impairment, it is best to get your ears and hearing regularly tested to ensure that you do not require more effective treatments.