Top 10 Hearing Aid Accessories
If you use hearing aids you are fully aware that the process is more than simply putting them on every day and turning up the volume. With hearing aids comes a whole list of things that have to be considered including how to care for them, how to maximize their usage, and how to protect them from damage. To that end an entire industry of hearing aid accessories has cropped up. There are literally hundreds of manufacturers and distributors around the country providing dozens of different accessory items. Some make complete sense; some appear to be nothing more than novelties.
It would be impossible to list every single hearing aid accessory that's out there, so we've decided to provide our top 10 list of hearing aid accessories. These accessories are things that every hearing aid user should keep around the house. They are not listed in any specific order of importance.
1. Ear Wax Removal Kit
Experts estimate that as many as 80% of all hearing aid users who claim their devices are no longer working are actually just suffering from a buildup of ear wax. Under normal circumstances ear wax is able to loosen on its own and drain naturally away from the ear. But in an individual who wears hearing aids on a regular basis, this natural process is often impeded. The buildup of ear wax inside the ear canal can cause conductive hearing loss which renders hearing aids less effective. An ear wax removal kit provides a solution to loosen excessive ear wax and a syringe to help suck it out.
2. Healing Cream or Ointment
Prolonged use of hearing aids can cause skin irritation which results in rashes, abrasions, and potential infections. There are a handful of healing creams and ointments that can be applied to the ear canal to help these conditions. Most of them are rich in vitamins A and E to promote the healing of your irritated and sore skin. Be sure to buy a product specifically designed for those who wear hearing aids, as other products may do damage to your ear buds.
3. Ear Mold Cleaner
Also known as ear buds, your ear molds can promote skin irritation if they're not kept clean. Yet due to the nature of both your skin and your ear molds, it is not a good idea to simply use household cleaner on them. Rather, use an alcohol free cleaning solution designed specifically for hearing aids. This is the best way to keep your ear molds clean without causing further skin irritation.
If you live in a warmer climate you're probably very familiar with those temporary cutouts that occur when perspiration makes its way into your hearing aids. In most cases this is a minor condition which clears up rather quickly. But if perspiration is excessive, it can actually damage your hearing aids. It's a good idea when you plan to be outside in a warmer climate to wear sweatbands that will absorb any perspiration. There are several manufacturers that make them for specific brands of hearing aids, but generic versions may work for you. They simply slip over the hearing aid like a glove.
5. Battery Case
Also known as a battery caddy, the battery case is one of the more indispensable hearing aid accessories. One never knows when the batteries in his hearing aids will die, and it is somewhat annoying to have the experience during the middle of a good conversation or at a dinner party. The battery case allows you to carry extra batteries while still protecting them at the same time. Keep in mind that carrying unprotected batteries in your pocket is not necessarily a good idea, especially if you have coins or other objects in the pocket as well. Using a battery case keeps your batteries secure and always in a place where you can find them.
6. Telephone Ear Pads
Talking on the telephone when you're using hearing aids can be annoying if the hearing aid comes into direct contact with the surface of the receiver. However, foam pads with adhesive backing solve this problem nicely and inexpensively. These pads very easily stick to the surface of your receiver and provide a gentle cushion between it and your ear.
7. Phones with Adjustable Volume
Although this technically isn't a hearing aid accessory, it's a good idea nonetheless. It is very common for hearing aid users to forget they have hearing aids after a while; something that can be especially troublesome when picking up the telephone. If the volume on the phone is too loud it can cause your hearing aid to send painful, and almost unbearable, signals into your ear. But with a volume adjustment feature it's easy to reduce the volume when necessary. Should you answer the phone without your hearing aids in, you can adjust the volume back up.
8. Battery Testers
Every now and again an extended illness or other circumstance may prevent you from using your hearing aids as often as you normally would. In such a case, you may be ready to change your batteries only to find out that the replacement pair has lost their charge. With a battery tester you'll be able to take care of weak batteries before it becomes an issue. Without a battery tester you may wind up carrying several pairs of spare batteries just to guard against unexpected battery failure.
9. Hearing Aid Dryer
If you do accidentally allow excessive moisture into your hearing aids it can take longer for them to dry out then you'd prefer. This is where you need a hearing aid dryer. This device is almost like a tiny oven which provides consistent but gentle heat that will dry out your hearing aids and freshen them as well in no time. What's more, you'll be ensuring that your hearing aids are completely dried out before you use them again. This prevents moisture retention that could eventually damage the electronics.
10. Hearing Aid Vacuum
While excess buildup of ear wax inside the ear can cause conductive hearing loss, occasionally ear wax and other debris gets inside your ear molds too. There's no easy way to clean them out other than using a hearing aid vacuum. This is a very small device which uses gentle suction to remove debris from ear molds. It is indispensable if you're the type of person who often has ear wax issues.