Along with providing some excellent hearing health benefits, hearing aids also represent a significant investment to most users. Like nearly all high-tech devices, proper hearing aid maintenance improves performance and increases longevity. Knowing how to clean your hearing aids is a significant part of proper maintenance, so I’ve put together a quick guide to cleaning your hearing aids.
Establish a Regular Cleaning Schedule
Our busy lifestyles can cause us to put off taking care of many essential tasks. It is worth noting that many issues with hearing aid performance or longevity stem from infrequent cleaning. Consequently, frequent cleaning provides the best assurance that you will get the best possible benefit from the device. For this reason, I recommend that my patients establish a daily cleaning schedule either as a regular part of your morning or before bed routines.
Assemble the Tools
Having the right tools on hand and kept in a convenient place encourages and makes cleaning a quick and painless task. You should have:
- a soft cloth
- a soft bristle brush
- a wax pick
- a bulb blower
Cleaning ITE Hearing Aids
To clean an ITE (in the ear) model hearing aid, follow these steps:
- Open up the battery case and blow out any accumulated moisture.
- Use the soft cloth to wipe your device down quickly.
- With each opening of the device alternately facing downward over a towel, use the brush to clear wax and debris away from and out of the openings.
- If debris is stuck inside the opening, use the wax pick to work it free gently.
- Finish by wiping the entire device with a clean, dry cloth or tissue. This will remove debris from the case of the hearing aid.
Cleaning BTE Hearing Aids
Follow these steps to clean a BTE (behind the ear) style and ear mold hearing aids:
- Remove the earmold from the hook to clean both parts separately.
- Follow the same procedure as for ITE hearing aids above.
- Staining and discoloration of earmolds overtime are common. Daily cleaning and a weekly soaking in warm soapy water help prevent this.
- Allow the wet parts to soak overnight or use a bulb blower to dry them.
- Finish by thoroughly wiping down both parts and reassembling.
Daily cleaning helps your hearing aids to perform at their best and increases their longevity. There are several additional tips related to your hearing aids to keep in mind while you are in the process of cleaning them, including:
- Use a dehumidifier in your home if you live in a humid climate.
- Avoid extreme heat or cold, which contributes to condensation or exposure to UV damage.
- Remove your hearing aids during your hygiene routine, especially when using hair spray or hair gel.
- Keep them away from water (shower, beach, swimming pool, hot tub, etc.)
- DO NOT use alcohol or any other chemicals for cleaning.
- Examine your device for cracks in the case, tubing or wires, and other structural issues.
Although you might be tempted to do so, don’t fix anything yourself. Hearing aid technicians have the knowledge and tools to fix things right and ensure the best performance and longevity of the device.
I am Ready to Help
By cleaning your hearing aids daily, you will not only help them perform better, but you will also be able to immediately identify irregularities in the casing, wires, and various intricate parts of the device.
You should point these out to our technician when you bring your hearing aid in for scheduled maintenance or report any severe problems immediately.
I want you to get the most benefit for the most extended amount of time from your hearing aids, so contact me with any questions about cleaning and maintenance, or set up an appointment to have our technician take a look at your device.