Spring showers bring May flowers! Which also means pollen, yard work, and more time outdoors. Anything outside when pollen season begins is at risk of being turned yellow and covered with flower petals, including your hearing aids. While the risk of a flower petal getting stuck inside your hearing aid is incredibly low, there is a high chance of pollen finding its way into your hearing aid.
Did you know that the most common reason people believe their hearing aids are broken is that they are not clean? Dirt and pollen buildup can cause the microphones inside the device to not function properly. This leads to a muffled sound or the sound stopping all together. It is important to keep up with the cleaning maintenance of your hearing aids for many reasons, the biggest one being your ability to hear!
Cleaning your domes
Cleaning the domes of your hearing aids is a practice that should happen once every day. The best time to do this is at the end of the day when you take your hearing aids before sleep. This prevents the buildup of earwax and oils as well as gives the domes time to dry before use.
To clean your domes, remove them from the end of the hearing aid then gently wipe them down with a clean cloth or the wipes that come in your cleaning kit. Alcohol wipes purchased from the store work as well.
Cleaning your device
Most hearing aids come with a basic cleaning kit that includes a pick and a brush. The pick is used to clean out the areas of your hearing aid where dirt might have built up over time. For best practices, it is recommended that this be done once a month or after participating in an activity that could result in dirt build-up. These activities could include mowing the lawn or gardening.
Changing your wax filter
Wax guards/filters catch the dust, debris, and wax and allow easy removal to prevent damage to the device. These do not need to be changed as often as the domes need to be cleaned (about once a month). The timeframe between replacements depends on the individual’s earwax production so you might need to change yours more frequently than others. Below are the steps for changing your wax guard.
- Carefully take the dome off the hearing aid. There will be a filter (usually white) on the receiver.
- Take the new wax guard out of the package. There will be one side with the new guard and another with a thorn used to grab the old one.
- Place the thorn on the old wax guard and press down. When you pull back, the old wax guard will be attached to the thorn and off the receiver.
- Take the new wax guard and put it into the receiver. Pull back and the wax guard will be attached to the receiver.
- Place the dome back on the hearing aid and you’re done!
One sign that it is time to replace your wax guard is if no sound is coming from your hearing aid. When wax, oil, and other debris gets built up on the wax guard, it can prevent sound from reaching the eardrum.
Click here to watch a video provided by one of our Providers! This video walks you through the steps of changing your wax filter.
When to get them professionally cleaned
Sometimes dirt, pollen, and oil can get stuck in hearing aids and be difficult to get out yourself. Your Hearing Health Provider can assist in deep cleaning your hearing aids when you come in for your next appointment. If you find that your hearing sounds muffled, it is recommended that you bring your device in to be professionally cleaned.