How to Adjust to Your New Hearing Aids

How to Adjust to Your New Hearing Aids

In Hearing Aids by Jennifer Douberly, Au.D.

If you are the proud owner of a new pair of hearing aids, congratulations! You are now prepared to experience the many benefits associated with hearing assistance, ranging from your enjoyment of the sonic environment to better communication in your relationships. Many studies have found a correlation between hearing assistance and better health, as well, so you have made a wise choice to get help with hearing as soon as you need it. Although hearing aids might seem self-explanatory, there are some helpful tips to ease your adjustment to wearing them. When you first put on hearing aids, you might notice that they don’t function like eyeglasses, making your sight suddenly sharper. Hearing aids do bring a wider range of sound to your attention, but they can take some time to get used to. Let’s take a moment to consider how you can best adjust to your hearing aids, making sure that you ease the transition and get the most out of them.

Gradual Adjustment

When you receive your hearing aids, you might be tempted to put them in at the office and never to take them out. For some people, this approach might work just fine, but others will benefit from a more gradual adjustment. When you insert your hearing aids, you will likely be able to hear voices more clearly and many of the pleasant sounds that were completely missing due to hearing loss. However, you are also likely to hear some other sounds much more loudly. Even your home can seem like it is newly enlivened with the sound of fans, motors, buzzing appliances, and other unknown creaks and bumps. Those who live nearby a road might hear traffic noise more loudly, including the sound of emergency vehicles and construction. With this sudden inundation of sound, you will be wise to take time to adjust to your hearing aids. We recommend starting with your hearing aids at home, a place that is relatively quiet and safe. You might notice many of these new sounds at first, but they will quickly fade to the background in your attention. If you find the new sounds overwhelming or frustrating, you can start off with a shorter session wearing your hearing aids. If they start to feel like too much, you can take them out and try again tomorrow. Wearing your hearing aids for a time each day is important for the adjustment period, so be sure to give your aids a try as much as possible, even if for a short session. 

Out and About

Once you are comfortable with your hearing aids at home, you can try them in a public place like a grocery store or other amenity. You will likely be made aware of a new array of sounds, and you can use your hearing aids in a conversation with the cashier or someone else in that location. If you find any problems with your hearing aids in this location, you can ask a friend, loved one, or community member for help with the settings. Also, you can always call our office for assistance and to troubleshoot the problem. We may be able to help you adjust the settings on your hearing aids or to see if you are inserting your aids in a way that blocks their effectiveness. Once you have tried your hearing aids in a public place, you can try them while driving, as well. Wearing your hearing aids while driving can present some surprising sounds, including emergency vehicle sirens and construction, so we don’t recommend wearing your hearing aids while driving until you have become comfortable in other settings first. With your hearing aids in place, you will be able to better listen for traffic and other sounds that ultimately make driving safer for you. These adjustment tips can help you make the most of your hearing aids and use them in as many situations as possible. If you haven’t yet received treatment for hearing loss, the time is now to schedule an appointment for a hearing test. Once you know if you need them, you can embark on this path toward assistance in a variety of settings, as well.