It’s a tough pill to swallow, for many, coming to grips with and accepting the truth of hearing loss. Nonetheless, you pushed on and went to a hearing professional for a hearing aid fitting appointment, because you knew that’s what was best for your health. Most likely, you quickly recognized the advantages one receives from using a hearing aid, including the ability to deal with tinnitus, hear speech (even among the din of background noise), and the potential to recover from cognitive decline.
But sometimes you get a loud, piercing, shrieking negative among all the life changing benefits. You get a loud squealing noise from your hearing aids. Feedback is the more familiar word for this whistling. It’s like what happens when a microphone comes too close to the sound system, the only distinction is this time it’s directly in your ear. This, luckily for you, is an issue that can be corrected fairly easily. We’ve organized a recap of three tried-and-true ways to stop your hearing aid from whistling.
1. Adjust The Fit of Your Hearing Aid
Possibly the most prevalent reason for feedback or whistling in the ear involves the positioning of your hearing aid in your ear or the earmold connected to it. The sound can get out and reverberate through the microphone of the hearing aid if it doesn’t fit correctly. The consequences of that leakage can be a whistling that’s either sporadic or continuous, depending on how much sound has escaped and how poorly the fit really is. A plastic tube connects some hearing aid designs with an earmold. In time, the earmold can become unseated from its correct position due to shrinking, cracking and hardening. If you switch out the plastic piece, you can fix the whistling which is caused by this movement.
2. Excessive Earwax Should be Removed
Earwax is actually good for our bodies, even though, ironically, we tend to think of it as unwanted or even foul. Dirt and other things are stopped from getting into the ears by this gooey substance which acts as a defense. Actions, like talking or chewing help your ears control the amount of earwax they make but there can be an adverse effect if too much earwax builds up. Feedback will inevitably occur if you put a hearing aid on top of too much earwax. The reason for this is that the amplified sound has nowhere to go because of the blockage from the wax. With no clear place to go, the sound circles and passes through the microphone again. Doing things like letting warm shower water run into your ears can help get rid of excessive earwax. However, the best idea could be to speak to a hearing specialist about correctly cleaning your ears to prevent excessive buildup and subsequent whistling.
3. Uncover the Microphone
Often times the most successful solution is the most obvious. How many times have you seen someone try to take a photo with the lens cap on their camera and watched as they became temporarily puzzled about why the picture didn’t come out? The same concept applies here. Anything covering the hearing aid can cause them to whistle. If you cover the microphone with your hand or another object, you get the same result, like if you bury your ear in someone’s shoulder while hugging them. This issue should be easy to fix just by uncovering the hearing aid.
Here’s a bonus tip: A new hearing aid may be the best solution. Manufacturers are regularly developing new hearing aid technology into devices, and we’ve already seen modern models alleviate some of these causes for concern. Give us a call if you are interested in checking out new hearing aid technology or if you are having a problem with your current hearing aids whistling.