May 30, 2012

Ask the Audiologist

margaretBy Margaret Christiansen, AU.D, CCC-A
Audiology Consultants, P.C.

How long does a hearing aid last and is there anything I can do to prolong it?

On average, hearing aids last between five to seven years. Hearing aids are similar to other electronic devices, in that over time technology continually improves. Typically, within five to seven years, hearing aid technology has improved significantly enough to warrant the purchase of new hearing aids. Also, with time and consistent use, the electronic components in hearing aids will wear out and need to be replaced.

There are several ways to prolong the use of hearing aids. First and foremost, appropriate use and care are essential. One part of appropriate hearing aid care is daily cleaning. Your hearing care professional most likely reviewed how to clean your hearing aids when you were first fit with the hearing aids or at one of your follow up appointments. If you have questions regarding how to clean your hearing aids be sure to contact your hearing care professional. Along with daily cleaning, an additional component of hearing aid care is keeping your hearing aids protected from excessive moisture. If moisture is a concern, your hearing care professional will be able to give you some suggestions for protection against moisture. One helpful tool for moisture protection is a Hearing Aid Saver, which removes excessive moisture through the use of desiccant beads. Again, your hearing care professional will be able to tell you if a Hearing Aid Saver is an appropriate option for you.

Along with the care you provide, it is recommended that you see your hearing care professional every six months
for a hearing aid check. This provides your hearing care professional the opportunity to be sure your hearing aids are in good working order and also allows your hearing care professional to thoroughly clean your hearing aids and make any necessary adjustments. Additionally, semiannual appointments provide you the opportunity to discuss any questions or concerns you may have regarding your hearing aids.

The recommendations for prolonging hearing aid use are numerous. Therefore, specific questions and concerns can always be directed to your hearing care professional. Since hearing aids are worn every day, some wear and tear is inevitable over time; however, consistent and appropriate care along with proper follow up can make a significant difference in prolonging hearing aid use.