Is the Performance of a Hearing Aid Impacted by Cold Weather?

Senior friends wearing aids enjoying a day on the slopes

Lots of people really love winter! Alright, it can certainly be a bummer if you have to go somewhere. Or if you don’t have the correct gear (or proper infrastructure). But during those cold winter months, you can find plenty of enjoyable things to do.

Still not convinced? Well, here are only a few instances of how cold weather can be enjoyable: you could go skiing or sledding. You could have a good time on a snowmobile! Or you could grab a pair of ice skates and spend some time out on the ice. You can enjoy being outdoors in the winter just as much as the summer, spring, or, autumn if you have the right gear.

But the secret here is having the appropriate gear. Perhaps you’re wondering if your hearing aid counts as part of that gear and whether it will be impacted by the cold. Or will cold weather damage my hearing aids?

Most hearing aids are manufactured to be all-weather… to a point

Hearing aids are made to be used on a daily basis. They’re designed to be worn pretty much everywhere you go. Which means that hearing aid makers are aware that these devices might take a pounding. We don’t recommend you do anything drastic with your hearing aids, just keep in mind that they’re made to go along with you throughout your normal daily tasks.

Most hearing aids are built to be basically “all weather” as a result. The safe temperature range for the majority of hearing aids is from -13 to 158 degrees Fahrenheit. That covers the broad range of temperature possibilities (even though there are some places, especially up north, that will sometimes get colder than -13 degrees).

Which is a good thing! It means you’ll be able to hear in most settings. So why don’t my hearing aids seem to work as well when it’s really cold? Well, drops in temperature will put strain on your devices, so while they may work, they may not work at their best.

Guidelines for hearing aids in the winter

You can keep your hearing aids functioning at close to maximum efficiency if you take a few measures.

  • Try not to let your hearing aid wet: When snow melts, it’s wet, so be careful about exposing your hearing aids to snow. If you’re wondering whether you can use your hearing aids in the rain or snow, the answer is yes. Most hearing aids are water resistant but not necessarily waterproof. So while your hearing aid will probably be okay if it gets a bit wet, you should dry it as soon as possible.
  • Consult us about the fit of your hearing aids: Hearing aids can sometimes be uncomfortable when they’re cold. Decrease any possible discomfort by getting help from us with the fit of your device.
  • When you’re not using your hearing aids, keep them in a dry and warm place: Your hearing aid will function better and with fewer problems if you keep moisture out of it. You’re probably asking: “How do I eliminate moisture from my hearing aids”? Normally, you can wipe it down and allow it to air dry in a warm spot.
  • Make sure you have freshly charged batteries: Hearing aid batteries don’t generally freeze but they will die faster in the cold. This means you’ll want to make certain you have a full charge before heading out into any inclement weather.
  • Try to dawn a hat or earmuffs: Not only will this keep your ears warm, it’ll keep your hearing aids warm, also! And your hearing aids will operate at their best level if they are warm. Your next question might be: can I wear ear muffs over my hearing aid without affecting my hearing? Well, it depends on the hearing aid, but in most cases, your hearing aids will still keep working.
  • Keep your hearing aids secured in your ear by making use of accessories.: There are all kinds of straps and clips you can use to make sure your hearing aids stay in place. This can be especially significant if you’re involved in strenuous activity, such as skiing, skating, or sledding.

Maybe you’re wondering how to safeguard your hearing aids when it gets cold. Well, now you have some answers.

What should you do if your hearing aids quit working?

Sometimes, unfortunately, your hearing aid will stop working even when the weather is warm and dry. There are a few basic troubleshooting measures you can take (be sure your device is dry and the batteries are charged, for example). If you still aren’t able to figure out why they’re not working, we should be able to help you with that.

Don’t let cold weather stop you from enjoying life!

When it’s -10 degrees outside, it’s reasonable that you would want to stay inside. Perhaps you’re not a winter person. Possibly you’re going to cook yourself some yummy warm soup. Possibly snowmobiles aren’t your jam. What’s important here is not to let issues with your hearing aid diminish your quality of life, even during the winter.

That’s particularly true if you take care of your devices, and observe the tips outlined above. If you have any questions about how cold weather might effect the performance of your hearing aids, call us today!

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.