You’ve been looking forward to this day for quite a while. You received your new hearing aids. You’re finally going to be able to get back into the swing of your social life again. Now, you won’t be missing parts of conversations or experiencing uncomfortable transitions. But there’s an issue: everything sounds just a little off.
The reason for this is that it will often take some time before you adjust 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 hard to be patient.
But there are several tips you can use to minimize this transition period. Before long, with a bit of practice, you will be focusing on what you’re hearing rather than your hearing aids.
Tips that help you start Slowly
No matter how technologically sophisticated they may be, it’s going to take your brain a little while to adjust to hearing certain sounds again. Here are a few ways you can purposely give yourself time to adjust and start things off slowly:
- Only use your hearing aids for short amounts of time to begin with: A few hours at a time is the most you should use your hearing aids when you first start out. They might feel a little funny at first (this is normal), so it’s okay to start a little bit at a time. As your hearing aids get more comfortable, you can wear them for longer periods of time.
- Use your hearing aids only around the house initially: When you’re at home, you have much more control over what you’re hearing, and you’ll likely experience considerably less noise pollution. This means you can concentrate on one voice at a time.
- Initially, try to pay attention to one-on-one conversations: If you wear your hearing aids while eating at a crowded restaurant on your first day you get them, you could be discouraged, not because the devices are doing anything wrong. It’s just that it’s difficult for your ear and brain to deal with focusing on all those different voices. Sticking to one-on-one conversations can help make that transition smoother (and give you a little extra practice, too).
Get extra practice with these tips
There are some things you can do, as with any skill, that can help you with hearing aid practice. You may even have some 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 begin remembering what certain words sound like when you read along with the voices you’re hearing. This can give you some practice hearing and adjusting to speech.
- Simply practice hearing: That’s right: Go someplace a little quiet and take in the sounds around you. You can practice by focusing on trying to hear the fridge running or the cat meowing in the other room or the birds singing outside.
- Read along with the printed book while you listen to the audiobook.: This similar exercise can also be really enjoyable. Your brain will learn to make associations between words and sounds by using this read along strategy.
Strengthen your hearing health with these tips
Keeping your ears as healthy as possible, after all, is one of the principal purposes of hearing aids. But, as you take some time to get used to your new hearing aids, there are some things you can do that your ears will thank you for.:
- Keep visiting us: There might be a temptation to presume that once you’ve got the right hearing aids, you won’t need to have anymore hearing exams. Nothing could be further from the truth. We can continue to track your hearing, make sure the fit is comfortable, and make any needed adjustments. These follow up visits are very important.
- If you’re experiencing any pain, be sure you document it and tell us about it.: Your hearing aids shouldn’t hurt. So if you’re experiencing any pain or something’s not fitting right, it’s important to let us know as soon as you can.
Go slow and increase your time as you get accustomed to your hearing aids
Working your way up to using your hearing aids full time is the goal here. Everybody’s different but the slow and steady strategy often works best. You’ll want to get individualized guidance from us on the best way for you to get accustomed to your new hearing aid.
These tips will help you have a more enjoyable and enriched life with your new hearing aids.