Dos and Don'ts of Adjusting to Hearing Aids
Hearing aids can be hugely beneficial and have the ability to improve your life experience almost exponentially. However, there is no denying that all new hearing aid wearers tend to need to go through a process of adjustment.
Initially, people find that hearing aids feel very conspicuous and obvious, and they may struggle to adapt to the range of programs and features that are available with their device. This period does pass naturally in time, but if you want to ensure your adjustment period is as short as possible, here are a few “dos” and “don’ts” you might want to keep in mind.
DO start slowly
You may find that the experience of wearing hearing aids is, to begin with, slightly disconcerting. As with most things regarding the senses, it will usually take a while for your brain to adapt and “catch up” to the newly enhanced ability. If you have worn glasses in the past, you will already have experienced a version of this when adjusting to a new lens prescription – the experience with hearing aids is along the same lines.
As a result, it’s important to start slowly, wearing your hearing aids for just an hour or so at a time to begin with. This will give your brain time to adapt and ensure the process is as easy to cope with as possible.
DON’T use your hearing aids in a loud or busy area
Until you are confident that you have adjusted to using the device, it’s usually best to avoid loud or busy areas when wearing your hearing aids. You may find that being in a loud, crowded space amplifies the slightly odd feeling that hearing aids can initially cause, so it’s best to experiment using your hearing aids in quiet, predictable, and easily-controlled environments (such as your home) to begin with.
DO take it one day at a time
You may find that on some days, you feel perfectly at ease with your hearing aids, and can enjoy all the benefits they offer. However, the next day, you may find yourself back to square one. This is entirely normal during the first few weeks, so take each day as a new start; eventually, you should notice that you have far more good days than bad ones, and then, in time, no bad days at all.
DON’T tolerate discomfort
Adapting to your hearing aids shouldn’t cause discomfort. In the unlikely event you experience this kind of issue, your audiologist should be your first phone call.
It can be tempting to think that you will immediately adjust to hearing aids, but it can take a few weeks to adapt fully to using these helpful devices. This is entirely normal, and hopefully, the points above will assist you through this process.
However, if you are still experiencing problems after two or three weeks of use, it might be worth visiting your audiologist to obtain further personalized advice that can help you comfortably adjust once and for all.