Three Ways Hearing Aids Can Malfunction

Man having troubles with his hearing aids while trying to communicate with his friend.

Have you ever had your internet disappear just as you’re getting to the best part of your favorite Netflix show? You sit there and watch that spinning circle instead of finding out who won that cooking competition. And so you just wait. Is it your internet provider, modem, router, or maybe it will simply come back on its own? It sort of stinks.

When technology malfunctions, it can be really frustrating. The same is definitely true of your hearing aids. When they’re functioning correctly, hearing aids can help you remain connected with the ones you love and better hear co-workers when they speak to you.

But when they quit working, your hearing loss symptoms can suddenly become a lot more frustrating. You’ve been disappointed by the technology you count on. Why would your hearing aids just quit working? So how do you cope with that? Here are the three prevalent ways your hearing aids can malfunction and how to diagnose and identify them.

Three common issues with hearing aids (and some possible solutions)

Even though hearing aids are sophisticated technology, individuals might experience three common issues with them. Here’s what could be causing those issues (and what you can do to fix them).

Feedback and whistling

Maybe you suddenly start to hear a terrible high-pitched whistling while you’re trying to have a chat with a friend or relative. Or maybe you notice a bit of feedback. And so you think, “Why do I hear whistling in my hearing aids? This is odd”.

Here are three potential problems that could be causing this whistling and feedback:

  • Earwax buildup in your ear canal can compromise how your hearing aid functions. You’ll find this comes up fairly often. That includes making your hearing aid whistle or feedback. You can try to clear some of the earwax out (never use a cotton swab) and if that doesn’t work out, you can get some help from us.
  • The tubing that attaches the hearing aid with the earmold, on behind-the-ear models, can occasionally become compromised. Try to examine this tubing as closely as you can and make sure nothing is loose and the tube does not appear damaged.
  • Your hearing aids might not be sitting in your ears correctly. Try taking them out and putting them back in. If the fit isn’t correct you might need to come see us so we can help you get a better fit.

Depending on the underlying cause of the feedback, we can help you deal with these problems if you can’t fix them on your own.

No sound coming from your hearing aids

The main goal of hearing aids is to generate sound. That’s their main function! Something has definitely gone wrong if you can’t hear any sound coming from your hearing aid. So what could cause hearing aids to lose all sound? Here are some things to watch for:

  • Your settings: If you have them, cycle through your custom settings. It’s possible your hearing devices are not on the right custom program (so maybe your hearing aids think you’re in a gymnasium instead of around the kitchen table). This incorrect setting could throw off the sound you’re hearing.
  • Earwax buildup: Yup, earwax strikes again. Examine your device for signs of earwax on the microphone or speakers or any sensitive parts. Keep your device really clean.
  • Batteries: If you have rechargeable batteries, be sure that they’re completely charged. And whether your batteries are rechargeable or not, it may be worth switching them out for new ones.
  • Power: Everyone forgets to turn their hearing aids on once in a while. Make certain that isn’t the issue. Then you can cross that of the list of possible problems.

We’re here for you if these steps don’t clear your issues up. Whether repair, maintenance, or replacement is your next step, we will be able to help you figure that out.

Your ears hurt while you’re wearing your hearing aids

What if your hearing aids are working fine, but every time you put them in your ears, your ears start to hurt? And you’re probably thinking: why do my ears ache when I use my hearing aids? You’re not as likely to use your hearing aids on a daily basis if they hurt your ears. So, why do they hurt?

  • Fit: The most evident issue can be the fit. After all, the majority of hearing aids work best when the fit is nice and snug. So when your hearing aids aren’t fitting quite right, there can be some pain. Many hearing aids can be customized to your particular ears. Over the long haul, you will have fewer issues if you have a snug fit. If you come see us, we can help you achieve the best fit for your device.
  • Time: Sometimes, it just takes a little while to get accustomed to your hearing aids. Each person will have a different adjustment period. It’s worth talking about when you buy your hearing aids so you have a realistic concept of how long it might take you to become comfortable with your devices. If uncomfortable ears remain, speak with us about that as well!

Take your new hearing aid out for a test ride

Before you commit to a pair of hearing aids, it’s a smart plan to try them out for a while. Most of the time we will have loaner pairs for you to try out before you make a decision.

As a matter of fact, we can help you determine the best kind of hearing aid for your requirements, adjust the fit to match your ears, and help you manage any extended problems you might have with your devices. We will be your resource for any assistance you need.

And that’s probably more reliable than your internet company.

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.