You finally obtained your new hearing aids. You’re so thrilled to be able to dive into your social life again. Now, you won’t be missing elements of conversations or experiencing uncomfortable transitions. But there’s an issue: everything sounds a little bit off.
The reason for this is that it will normally take some time before you get used to your new hearing aids. This can be a frustrating transition. You were so looking forward to enjoying your hearing again and it feels like it’s taking so long.
But there are a few tips you can practice to reduce this transition period. Before long, with a bit of practice, you will be focusing on what you’re hearing instead of your hearing aids.
Tips that help you start Slowly
Your brain will take a little while to get accustomed to hearing certain sounds again regardless of how sophisticated your hearing aids are. Here are some ways you can intentionally give yourself time to adjust and start things off slowly:
- Wear your hearing aids for a short period of time: A few hours at a time is the most you should wear your hearing aids when you first get started. Your hearing aids will most likely feel a little strange in your ears for a while so beginning slowly is okay. You can start to use your hearing aids for longer durations as you become accustomed to them.
- Begin by using 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 considerably less noise pollution. This will help you focus on individual voices.
- Initially, try to focus on one-on-one conversations: If you use your hearing aids while eating at a crowded restaurant on your first day you get them, you may be disappointed, not because the devices are doing anything wrong. It’s just that it’s hard for your ear and brain to deal with focusing on all those different voices. By starting out with one-on-one conversations you will make the transition easier and also get a little additional practice.
Get added practice with these tips
As with 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. Some of these are even fun!
- Watch TV with the closed-captions on: It’s easy: Turn the TV on, put your hearing aids in, and enjoy. Your brain will start to remember what certain words sound like as you read along with the voices you’re hearing. This can give you some practice hearing and getting used to speech.
- Do some listening practice: That’s right: sit in a quiet place and let your ears do the hearing. Start out by tuning in to the sound of wind blowing through the trees or birds chirping or nearby running water.
- Read along with the printed version while you listen to the audiobook.: This similar exercise can also be very enjoyable. Your brain will learn to make associations between sounds and words by using this read along strategy.
Tips to keep your hearing health up
Of course, one of the purposes of hearing aids is to keep your ears as healthy as possible. And there are a few tips you can do to keep your ears happy as you get used to using your new hearing aid:
- Be certain to note and let us know about any pain: Your hearing aids shouldn’t be painful. So it’s important to report any issues with fit or any pain right away.
- Keep visiting us: You may not think you need to get hearing evaluations anymore after you get your hearing aids. Nothing could be further from the truth. We can help make adjustments to your hearing aids, keep the fit comfortable, and continue to check in on your hearing. It’s essential to continue with these follow up appointments.
Go slow and maximize your time as you get accustomed to your hearing aids
Your goal here will be to work your way up to using your hearing aids full time. A slow and steadfast approach works quite often, but everyone’s different. You’ll want to get personalized advice from us on the best way for you to get used to your new hearing aid.
Sticking with 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.