Hearing Aids Can Fail in These Three Ways

Man having troubles with his hearing aids while trying to communicate with his friend.

Have you ever had your internet disappear just as you’re almost to the best part of your favorite Netflix show? Instead of finding out who won the baking show, you have to watch an endless spinning circle. All you can do is wait around for it to come back. Perhaps it’s your modem, could be your router, possibly it’s the internet provider, or maybe it’ll just fix itself. It kind of stinks.

Technology can be tremendously frustrating when it doesn’t work correctly. The same is definitely true of your hearing aids. Most of the time, your hearing aids will give you the means to remain connected to loved ones, have conversations with co-workers, and keep up with your neighbors.

But when they stop working, your hearing loss symptoms can suddenly become a lot more frustrating. The technology you’re depending on has let you down. How do hearing aids just stop working? So how do you deal with that? Well, there are three prevalent ways that hearing aids can fail, here’s how you can start to identify and troubleshoot those issues.

Three common issues with hearing aids (and some possible solutions)

Even though hearing aids are sophisticated technology, people might encounter three common issues with them. Let’s have a look at possible causes of these problems and potential fixes.

Feedback and whistling

Perhaps you suddenly begin to hear an awful high-pitched whistling while you’re attempting to have a conversation with a friend or relative. Or perhaps you detect a bit of feedback. And so you think, “Why do I hear whistling in my hearing aids? This is strange”.

Whistling and feedback can be caused by these possible issues:

  • For individuals who wear behind-the-ear hearing aids, the tubing that attaches your earmold with your hearing aid may have become compromised. Take a close look to identify whether the tube may have detached or might be compromised in some way.
  • The functionality of your hearing aid can be affected by earwax accumulation in your ear canal. This is a relatively common one. That includes making your hearing aid whistle or feedback. If possible, you can try clearing some earwax out of your ear or consult with us about the best way to do that (don’t use a cotton swab).
  • You might not have your hearing aids seated properly in your ears. Try to take them out and re-seat them. You can also try turning the volume down (if this works, you might find some short-term relief, but it also likely means that the fit is indeed not quite right and you should speak with us about it).

If these issues are not easily resolvable, it’s worth consulting with us about correcting the fit or sending your device in for servicing (depending on what we think the underlying cause of that whistling or feedback might be).

Hearing aids not producing sound

The main goal of hearing aids is to produce sound. That’s their main function! So if you find yourself thinking, “I can’t hear any sound in my hearing aid,” well, then something is certainly not right. So what could be the cause when hearing aids work but no sound comes through? Well, there are a couple of things:

  • Batteries: If you have rechargeable batteries, be sure that they are completely charged. And even rechargeable batteries should be switched out on occasion.
  • Power: Look, we’ve all forgotten to turn on the hearing aid before. Check for this first. Then you can cross that of the list of potential problems.
  • Earwax buildup: Yup, earwax strikes again. Inspect your device for indications of earwax on the microphone or speakers or any sensitive parts. You want to make certain the device is good and clean.
  • Your settings: If you have them, cycle through your personalized settings. It’s possible your hearing devices are on the wrong custom setting (so maybe your hearing aids think you’re in a gymnasium instead of at the kitchen table). This balance could throw off the sound you’re hearing.

We are here for you if these steps don’t clear your issues up. We’ll be able to help you find out the next steps, and whether maintenance, repair, or replacement is required.

When you have your hearing aids in, your ears hurt

What if your hearing aids work perfectly, but whenever you put them in your ears, your ears start aching? And you’re most likely thinking: why do my ears hurt when I wear my hearing aids? This type of discomfort is not exactly conducive to using your hearing aids over the long term. So, what could be causing it?

  • Fit: The fit of the device is the most obvious issue. Naturally, when the fit is nice and tight, your hearing aids will work best. Which means that there can sometimes be discomfort involved in a poor fit. Many hearing aids can be personalized to your particular ears. Over the long haul, you will have fewer problems if you have a snug fit. If you come in for a consultation, we can help you get the best fit for your device.
  • Time: Usually, it just takes some time to get accustomed to your hearing aids. Each person will have a different adjustment period. When you first get your new hearing aids, we can help you get a reasonable concept of the adjustment period you can expect. Also, speak with us about any discomfort you may be experiencing.

Bypass problems with a little test drive

One of the best ways to prevent possible issues with hearing aids is to take them out for a bit of a test drive before you commit. In the majority of cases we’ll let you test out a pair of devices before you decide that’s the set for you.

As a matter of fact, we can help you identify the best kind of hearing aid for your requirements, adjust the fit to match your ears, and help you handle any extended issues you might have with your devices. In other words, when your devices quit working, you’ll have a resource that can help!

And that’s a lot more than you will get from an over-the-counter hearing aid!

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.