If you have lost hearing in one or both of your ears, you may be considering buying a hearing aid, but there are a few things you should know before doing this. None of this information should discourage you from getting a hearing aid, but you should know what to expect as you go down this path.
A hearing aid will not completely restore your hearing
Most patients who are fitted with a hearing aid will experience a substantial improvement in their hearing. However, hearing is seldom fully restored. As long as you understand this, you will not be disappointed, and like most people who get a hearing aid, you will find that the quality of your life improves.
A hearing aid requires daily maintenance
All hearing aids will need to be replaced at some point, but you can extend the life of a hearing aid with proper maintenance. This means you will need to plan on a routine of daily maintenance. At the least, you will need to wipe it clean with a cloth every day. In addition, you will get cleaning tools with your hearing aid. Most important among them will be a pick and a brush to remove ear wax. You will need to be vigilant in removing ear wax to extend the life of the device. Ear wax can cause corrosion of electronic components of a hearing aid. Other than this, your battery will need to be replaced periodically. Once you get used to the daily routine of maintenance, you will find that it is not time consuming.
There are several types of hearing aids
Once you decide to get a hearing aid, you will have to choose a type of hearing aid. There are basically two types: one that goes on the outside of the ear and one that fits inside of the ear canal. The outside type is one that you have likely seen before. It fits behind the ear and stays in place with a hook around the ear. The inside type is smaller and is less noticeable, but because of their size, they are more difficult to put in place than the exterior types. And because they are smaller, they don't have the manual controls of an exterior type such as an on and off switch or volume control.
Of course, if you suspect that you have a hearing loss you still need to have your hearing checked. A hearing loss may require something other than a hearing aid. But if your doctor recommends a hearing aid, keep the information above in mind, and you will be better prepared to make a hearing aid a part of your life.