Are You a First Time Hearing Aid User? Helpful Tips for Getting Used to Hearing Aids
For new hearing aid users, the whole experience at first can seem daunting and confusing. Especially if your hearing loss happened gradually over a span of several years. Using hearing aids for the first time can seem a bit disorientating, especially since many people are finally able to hear sounds that they haven’t heard in some time, and the brain needs time to readjust to interpreting these sounds.
If you are new to hearing aids, we know that there is a lot to know and be aware of. To help get you adjusted to your new pair of hearing aids, check out these helpful first time hearing aid user tips.
Be Patient, and Give Yourself Time
Don’t expect your new pair of hearing aids to be like your experience wearing eyeglasses for the first time. While you immediately see results with a new pair of glasses, for hearing aid users, time is needed to get accustomed. In many cases, the brain doesn’t remember how to hear, interpret, and identify every sound at first. You need time in order for your brain to become reacquainted with hearing particular sounds.
When you wear hearing aids for the first time, they may not feel right in your ears. This is a normal experience that happens to many first time users. So start off small, and be patient with yourself as both you and your brain needs the time to readjust. You don’t want to overwhelm or exhaust yourself, so when you first get your hearing aids only wear them for a few hours at a time, and then gradually increase your time wearing them as you become more comfortable.
Read to Yourself
While this may seem odd, read aloud to yourself to help retrain your brain to be able to recognize words and speech again. Plus, reading to yourself while wearing your hearing aids will help you determine the proper volume level for speech. You may have gotten into the habit of shouting before you received your hearing aids. Also, if possible, pair reading aloud to a matching audiobook or read aloud the closed captioning while watching television. This will also help your brain become reacquainted with sounds, words, and speech.
Allow Friends and Family to Help
During the hearing aid adjustment process, enlist the help of your family and friends. They can help you practice holding a conversation with a person, and can help you practice speaking in a group. However, try to practice with people that you know very well. Familiar voices are much easier on the brain to identify and interpret. Your brain is going to need help relearning the associations between words, sounds, and non-verbal body language.