So you finally got hearing aids. What now?

When you first bring home your first set of hearing aids, it’s important to remember it’s going to take some time to get used to the devices. This is what we call the familiarization phase. This includes getting used to both the physical sensation of wearing the device, as well as the new sense of hearing you’ll be soon exposed to. Remember, when you haven’t been able to hear certain sounds for a period of time, it will be a bit of a shock for your brain to all of sudden start perceiving and processing so many stimuli again. At first, you may feel like it’s hard to shutout these background noises.  However, after a few weeks or months, your brain will relearn how to suppress background noise and focus on important sounds. Give yourself time!

Tips for adjusting to your new hearing aid

As you are adjusting to your new hearing aid and adjusting to this new world of sound, there are some easy steps you can take to make the process as smooth and comfortably as possible.

1. Wear your hearing aids regularly, but for short periods of time.

To help your brain get used to normal noise levels again, it’s best to wear your hearing aid regularly in your first few weeks and months with your new device. However, start slow. There’s no need to overwhelm yourself by wearing your hearing aid all day at first. Start by wearing it for a few hours a day and then gradually increase the length of time each day.

2. Practice in quiet rooms

To start getting familiar with hearing a full range of sounds again, start out by using your hearing aid in a quiet setting at home. This will allow you to take in those soft subtle noises you’ve been missing such as the ticking of a clock or a car passing outside. Practice trying to identify all the different sounds you can pick up. Being in a quiet and comfortable environment will allow you to smoothly adjust to picking up these newly audible sounds again.

3. Read aloud to yourself

Sometimes the sound of your own voice might sound strange to you at first with a new hearing aid. But again, this will resolve itself after a few days of getting used to the sound. Reading aloud to yourself is a good exercise to use to help yourself get used to hearing your own voice and to adjusting your speech volume.

4. Start wtih conversations with friends and family

As you begin to start using your hearing aids for group conversations, start out by using them around your close friends and family. Familiar voices are the easiest to identify and it’s also important that you feel comfortable in your social setting when getting used to a new hearing aid.

5. Keep a hearing journal

You may find it helpful to write down your experiences in a hearing journal. This will allow you to track your personal progress. If you are really struggling, talk to your hearing care professional for advice.

Stay in touch with your hearing care professional

Adjusting to a new hearing aid is a big step and there are many important factors involved for you to get the most out of your hearing device. While you are adjusting to your new devices, it’s important to stay in contact with your hearing care professional and let them know what is working for you and what you might be having a hard time adjusting to. Your hearing care professional is there to guide you through this process and help make any adjustments to your device that you need.

Interesting in learning more about hearing aids and if they might be a good option for you? Book an appointment to speak with one of our hearing care professionals at your local Connect Hearing clinic