Hearing devices do not last forever. If you use hearing aids, your hearing instrument specialist (HIS) would have probably explained that you’ll need to update or upgrade your devices every few years.
Yet, how often you should change them and when is the right time can be tricky to figure out. As a rule of thumb, hearing instruments can last between three to seven years depending on the lifespan of the specific device, your maintenance routine, normal wear and tear and how frequently you use them. For instance, someone who relies on hearing only for certain types of activities could keep their devices longer than someone who needs them every day.
But besides your devices reaching the end of their lifespan, there are other occasions when you want to consider updating your hearing aids.
You’ve Noticed Changes in Your Hearing
Hearing loss is a condition that is likely to degenerate over time. In other words, you might notice that your hearing aids are not providing the necessary correction anymore. This could be caused by a variety of issues, including your hearing devices developing a fault and needing replacement.
However, when you suspect that your hearing quality is decreasing, it’s essential to arrange for a hearing test. This will help you and your hearing instrument specialist determine the best next step for your situation. Your HIS might be able to proceed with adjusting the settings on your current hearing aids. Alternatively, they might recommend different models that could be better suited to provide the correction you need.
Your Health Has Changed
Hearing is not the only condition that can degenerate over time. Your health can also change dramatically, even if it doesn’t affect your hearing. Older adults, for instance, often need to consider updating their hearing aids when they develop severe arthritis, as it can make it difficult to handle and set some devices. Limited dexterity, for any reason, will impact the way you use hearing aids. So, it can be a good idea to reach out to a HIS to discuss new device options.
Your Hearing Aids Are Old
Hearing instrument specialists recommend getting your hearing aids checked regularly. Indeed, even if older devices are well maintained, they do not match the hearing quality you could receive from new and more advanced technology. Modern hearing aids have unique features that can enhance your experience:
- Bluetooth compatibility lets you connect your devices to your smartphone or TV to transmit the sound directly at the processor level.
- Self-teaching and AI features ensure your hearing instruments auto-adjust to your environment and setting preferences.
- Smart control technology lets you adjust settings through a smartphone app.
- Noise-targeting solutions can help reduce background noises to improve hearing comfort.
Your Lifestyle and Exposure To Noise Have Changed
Your lifestyle determines the type of hearing support you need. So, it goes without saying that when you change your job or your activities, you want to make sure your hearing aids can tackle the new challenges.
For example, if you switch your work environment from individual office settings to an open layout, your hearing devices need to feature an option to reduce background noise and recognize words and conversations in a loud environment.
On the other hand, if you need to handle audio instruments such as working in the music or production industry, you want to make sure your hearing aids can use Bluetooth technology to connect with the surrounding technology.
The Hearing Aids Are Uncomfortable
Uncomfortable hearing devices may not need a full upgrade. But they can be updated to fit your ears better. For instance, a behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aid with an earmold could wear away over time. In this case, your hearing instrument specialist could help fit a new earmold on the current device.
A dramatic change in ear shape is more frequent for children and teenagers. For devices designed to be worn in the ear, it can be necessary to update for a new size or shape.
You Want to Try New Hearing Aids Types
Depending on your situation and the level of correction you need, there could be more than one type of hearing devices. The most common hearing aids on the market include:
- Behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aids sit behind your ear and amplify the sounds into a small earbud placed inside your ear canal.
- In-the-ear (ITE) hearing aids are custom-made, using a mold of your outer ear.
- In-the-canal (ITC) hearing aids are custom-made earbud-sized devices.
- Completely-in-canal (CIC) and invisible-in-canal (IIC) hearing aids are even smaller devices, custom-made to fit inside the ear canal.
Do you want to update your hearing aids? Don’t hesitate to get in touch with Byron’s Hudson Valley Hearing Aid Centers. Our team of experts is available for advice and appointment at 845-481-9267, 845-232-2147 and 845-481-9266.