You finally got your new hearing aids. You’re finally going to be able to get back into the swing of your social life again. Now, you won’t be missing elements of conversations or going through uncomfortable transitions. But your hearing aids just don’t sound quite right.
That’s because it’ll likely take you some time to adjust to a new set of hearing aids. This can be an annoying transition. You were so excited about enjoying your hearing again and it feels like it’s taking so long.
But there are a few tips you can use to reduce this transition period. Before long, with a little practice, you will be paying attention to what you’re hearing instead of your hearing aids.
Start slowly with these tips
Your brain will take a little time to get accustomed to hearing certain sounds again regardless of how sophisticated your hearing aids are. Here are some ways you can deliberately give yourself time to adjust and start things off slowly:
- Wear your hearing aids for a short period of time: When you’re just starting, you can practice by using your hearing aids for just a few hours at a time. Your hearing aids will probably feel a little weird in your ears for a while so starting gradually is okay. You can begin to wear your hearing aids for longer periods as you get used to them.
- Begin by wearing your hearing aids at home only: When you’re at home, you have a lot more control over what you’re hearing, and you’ll probably experience significantly less noise pollution. This means you can focus on one voice at a time.
- First, try to focus on one-on-one conversations: You might be setting yourself up for disappointment if you wear your hearing aids in a crowded setting right out of the box. When the brain has to focus on all those voices, it can get overwhelmed at first. By starting out with one-on-one conversations you will make the transition smoother and also get a bit of extra practice.
Tips that help you get added practice in
Much like any other skill (and hearing is a skill, among other things), there are a few activities that can help you practice with your hearing aids. You could even have a little fun!
- Turn on closed-captions when you watch TV: It’s easy: put in your hearing aids, flip on the television, and watch your favorite program. As you read the words you’ll also be hearing the actors talk, and your brain will start remembering what all these words sound like. This sort of practice will help you adjust to hearing speech again.
- Listen to an audiobook while you read the printed book: This is a really similar exercise (and allows you to get in some fun reading while you’re at it). Your brain will learn to make associations between words and sounds by employing this read along approach.
- Do some listening exercise: That’s right: Sit somewhere a little quiet and experience the sounds around you. You can practice by focusing on trying to hear the fridge running or the cat meowing in another room or the birds singing outside.
Improve your hearing health with these tips
Of course, one of the purposes of hearing aids is to keep your ears as healthy as you can. And there are a few tips you can do to keep your ears happy as you get accustomed to wearing your new hearing aid:
- Be sure to note and let us know about any pain: Because it shouldn’t hurt to wear hearing aids. So if you’re noticing any pain or something’s not fitting right, it’s important to report it as soon as possible.
- Keep visiting us: There might be a temptation to presume that once you’ve got the right hearing aids, you won’t need to see us anymore. This would be a bad idea. We can help tune your hearing aids, keep the fit comfortable, and continue to keep an eye on your hearing. These follow up visits are really important.
Go slow and increase your time as you get accustomed to your hearing aids
Working your way up to wearing your hearing aids full time is the objective here. A slow and progressive strategy is often effective, but everyone’s different. You’ll want to get individualized advice from us on the best way for you to get accustomed to your new hearing aid.
Implementing these tips (and tips like them) can help make sure that you enjoy having your hearing aids and that you keep using them because they continue to improve your life.