Congratulations! You’ve just got your first pair of hearing aids and are ready to hear the sounds of life again, loud and clear. You took the first step by being proactive and getting your hearing checked, and now you hold the solution in the palm of your hands. Hearing aids may seem small, but they have a big job and will perform well if you take care of them properly. Proper care means cleaning your hearing aid regularly so that you get the best sound quality and function. Below are some tips for cleaning and removing earwax, or “cerumen,” build-up from your hearing aids so that they last you for many years to come:
Invest in a Cleaning Kit
A hearing aid cleaning kit contains the essential tools that are just right for cleaning your specific hearing aid. When you first receive your hearing aid, you may also get a cleaning kit from your provider. If not, it’s definitely a good idea to purchase a kit separately, as you will need to use it regularly. A cleaning brush, wax pick, battery magnet, and battery door opener are some of the items included in a cleaning kit for your convenience.
Consider the Type of Hearing Aid
Different hearing aids need to be cleaned differently. You may have either a BTE (behind the ear) hearing aid or an ITE (in the ear) hearing aid. Depending on which one you have, you will be given instructions by your provider for proper care and cleaning. Make sure to follow these instructions carefully, as you do not want to damage your hearing aid. When cleaning, make sure your hands are clean and carefully inspect your hearing aid for earwax. Try to clean your hearing aid over a soft surface like a pillow or sheet, as dropping it on a hard surface could cause severe damage.
Wipe Regularly and Store Properly
Good maintenance and regular daily cleaning are imperative to the quality and upkeep of your hearing aid. However, removing the earwax is only half the battle. Wipe your hearing aid down nightly with a soft, dry cloth and don’t use abrasive cleaners, water, or alcohol. Store your hearing aid in a cool, dry place away from heat and moisture, and leave the battery door open when you aren’t using it. You might choose to invest in a hearing aid dryer that can be used overnight to keep your hearing aid away from moisture and potential damage.
Keep Your Ears Clean
Keeping your ears clean goes a long way in ensuring that your hearing aid stays clean as well. Don’t use Q-tips or bobby pins to clean your ears, as this can lodge earwax even further into your ears and cause a blockage. Instead, use a washcloth daily to clean your ears and make sure to get behind your ears as well as inside them. At Living Sounds, we offer ear wax removal, which is also called “cerumen management services.” If you feel you might have an excess of earwax build-up, you can call Living Sounds to schedule an appointment to have it assessed.
While it’s normal to produce earwax regularly, excess earwax could be a sign of a health condition and could lead to eardrum damage and tinnitus.
Get a Professional Cleaning
Hearing aids will need to be professionally cleaned periodically. If you find that there are areas where earwax is difficult to remove, then you may need to schedule an appointment for a professional cleaning with your provider. They can remove earwax from hard to reach areas and ensure that your hearing aid is working efficiently and that your cleaning habits are paying off. If you tend to get a build-up of earwax, it might pay off to be proactive about scheduling regular cleanings with your provider.
As much as you might dread the sight of earwax in your hearing aid, rest assured that it does serve a higher purpose. Earwax is beneficial in many ways and essentially protects your ears from greater dangers like bacteria and dirt. So while you clean your hearing aids regularly, keep in mind that earwax is natural, protective, and a part of a properly functioning ear canal. For more information on hearing aid services in the Edmonton area, please call Living Sounds at 1-833-559-4327 or contact us here. We would be happy to help you find the right hearing solution for your lifestyle and needs.