Nothing is more frustrating than loving your hearing aids and one of them quitting. The most common cause of hearing aid failure is moisture and debris on either the microphone or the speaker. If you think about it, the hearing aids have to work on (and in!) a human body 12 hours or more a day every day for years! Something is bound to quit working. Human beings are vapor machines. The relative humidity of a human ear canal is about 55%. We lose moisture through our skin (against which the hearing aid is closely tucked), we duck through rain, work up a sweat, walk through fog and in snow, ride bicycles….you get the idea.
The real question is what can you do to reduce the number of repairs over the life of the hearing instruments. First, invest in an excellent hearing aid dryer. They are completely worth the price (about 150.00) and will save you a lot of aggravation. Second, take your hearing aids to your provider’s office occasionally and have them thoroughly cleaned and tested. There is usually no cost for this service, an appointment is rarely necessary, and your provider or her technician, can often spot emerging trouble and take care of it then and there. Finally, take a close look at your instruments every morning before you put them on.
Something to keep in mind: Sound has to get into the aids, sound has to get out, and the aids have to have a reliable power source. Therefore, look at the microphones, the speaker port, and the battery door and contacts. If you aren’t sure what you are looking at, or for, ask your provider or technician to let you into her lab and show you what all of the parts are supposed to look like. And remember, if the aid does stop working, don’t panic, more often than not, it can be repaired.