Individuals using hearing aids for the first time can feel a bit of frustration and confusion. This fact is especially true if the hearing loss happened gradually over a number of years. There will be sounds the wearer of the hearing aids will hear for the first time in years and the brain needs to adjust before it will properly interpret these sounds. The following tips will help new hearing aid users adjust to their new reality.
Be Patient With Yourself
You should not expect your brain to identify and interpret sounds immediately after not hearing them properly for many years. There can also be a bit of discomfort at first so don’t be alarmed if it takes a few days or even weeks before your hearing aids feel comfortable to wear.
You should sit in a quiet place inside your home when you first try on your hearing aids. This will allow you to get used to sounds like ticking clocks, air conditioners, and other sounds in your home you have not heard in a while.
You should wear your hearing device for short periods of time at first. Take them out whenever you feel overwhelmed and try to leave them in place a little longer each day. You will fill yourself becoming more adept at identifying and interpreting voices and sounds with practice.
Read Out Loud
It is likely that you have been told at least once to stop shouting before you were fitted for a hearing aid. You will be better able to regulate the sound of your voice now that you will be able to hear properly. You can accelerate this process by reading aloud to yourself with your hearing aids in place.
Get Help From Family And Friends
Friends and family are vital to the hearing aid adjustment phase. Visiting with loved ones will provide you with the opportunity to speak in front of others in a relaxed atmosphere before interacting with the general public.
You should use a journal to record any sounds that irritate or bother you. For example, if the ticking of a clock in your home is too loud and causes you to become irritated make a note of this. If it is still difficult for you to understand when a dinner guest speaks in a crowded restaurant, you should also record this in your journal. Recording struggles with your hearing aid will allow you to relay them to a hearing aid specialist later.
Maintain Realistic Goals
Listening to voices and sounds through a hearing aid will always represent a slight difference from the way you use to hear before your hearing loss. Do not become frustrated by this. The goal is to restore your hearing to as close to normal as possible.
Easy On Volume Adjustment
There has been a number of advancements with hearing aids in the last few decades. A good hearing aid will adjust the volume automatically to fit different environments. This negates the need to adjust the volume manually. It will be tempting to toy with the volume when the noise level in the room changes but try not to do this too much.
Read And Listen At The Same Time
Practice reading a book along with the matching audio version. When watching television, turn on the closed caption and read along with the audio. This practice will help your brain adjust to associating words, speech, and sounds.
Perform Closed-Eyed Listening Exercises
Take a few minutes each day to sit alone with your eyes closed surveying the sounds around you. Identify the directions of the sounds you hear. Also, differentiate between sound types and patterns of speech without looking around.
The Bottom Line
It can be slightly confusing and a bit frustrating when you begin to wear hearing aids for the first time. The nine tips above are sure to smooth the transition process for individuals new to wearing hearing aids.