Three Ways Hearing Aids Can Malfunction

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

Have you ever been watching your favorite Netflix show when your internet abruptly cuts out? Instead of finding out who won the baking show, you have to watch a never-ending spinning circle. All you can do is wait around for it to come back. Maybe it’s your modem, could be your router, possibly it’s the internet company, or maybe it’ll just fix itself. It’s not a very good feeling.

Technology can be enormously frustrating when it doesn’t work properly. The same is definitely true of your hearing aids. When they’re working properly, hearing aids can help you stay connected with the ones you love and better hear co-workers when they talk to you.

But when they stop working, your hearing loss symptoms can abruptly become a lot more frustrating. You’ve been let down by the technology you count on. Why would your hearing aids just stop functioning? So how do you deal 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)

Hearing aids are complex devices. Even still, there are some common issues that individuals with hearing aids may encounter. Here’s what could be causing those issues (and what you can do to fix them).

Whistling and feedback

Perhaps you suddenly begin to hear a terrible high-pitched whistling while you’re attempting to have a conversation with a friend or family member. Or maybe you hear some feedback. You begin to think, “this is weird, what’s up with this whistling”?

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

  • Your hearing aids might not be seated in your ears properly. Try taking them out and putting them back in. You can also try turning the volume down (if this works, you may find some short-term relief, but it also likely means that the fit is indeed not quite right and you should consult us about it).
  • Earwax accumulation in your ear canal can compromise the way your hearing aid functions. You’ll notice this comes up fairly often. Whistling and feedback are often one result of this sort of earwax buildup. If possible, you can attempt to clean some earwax out of your ear or consult with us about the best method to do that (don’t use a cotton swab).
  • For people who wear behind-the-ear hearing aids, the tubing that attaches your earmold with your hearing aid might have become compromised. Try to inspect this tubing as closely as possible and make sure nothing is loose and the tube does not appear damaged.

If these problems aren’t easily resolvable, it’s worth speaking with us about adjusting the fit or sending your device in for servicing (depending on what we determine the underlying cause of that whistling or feedback may be).

No sound coming from your hearing aids

The main objective of hearing aids is to generate sound. That’s what they’re created to do! So if you find yourself thinking, “I don’t hear any sound coming from my hearing aid,” well, then something is definitely wrong. So what could cause hearing aids to drop all sound? Here are several things to look for:

  • Earwax buildup: Here we go again with the earwax! Have a close look to see if you come across any earwax on the microphone or speakers. Keep your device really clean.
  • Power: Look, we’ve all forgotten to turn on the hearing aid before. Make certain that’s not the issue. Then you can eliminate that as potential problems.
  • Batteries: Make sure your batteries are fully charged. And whether your batteries are rechargeable or not, it might be worth switching them out for new ones.
  • Your settings: If you have them, cycle through your personalized settings. It’s feasible your hearing devices are not on the right custom program (so perhaps your hearing aids think you’re in a concert hall instead of at the kitchen table). This balance could throw off the sound you’re hearing.

We are here for you if these steps don’t clear your issues up. We’ll be able to help you determine the next steps, and whether maintenance, repair, or replacement is required.

Your ears hurt when 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 begin aching? And you’re most likely wondering why your hearing aids would hurt your ears. This type of discomfort isn’t exactly conducive to using your hearing aids over the long term. So, what could be causing it?

  • 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 purchase your hearing aids so you have a realistic idea of how long it might take you to become comfortable with your devices. If uncomfortable ears persist, talk to us about that as well!
  • Fit: The fit of the device is the most evident problem. After all, the majority of hearing aids work best when the fit is nice and snug. Which means that there can sometimes be pain involved in a poor fit. Some hearing aid models can be fit to the particular shape of your ears. The better the fit, the fewer problems you’ll have with pain over the long haul. We will be able to help you achieve the best possible fit from your devices.

Bypass problems with a little test drive

Before you commit to a pair of hearing aids, it’s a smart plan to test them for a while. In the majority of cases we’ll let you test out a set of devices before you decide that’s the set for you.

Selecting the correct hearing aids, adjusting them to fit your requirements, and helping with any ongoing problems you may have, are all things we will assist with. We will be your resource for any assistance you need.

And that’s most likely more dependable 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.

Questions? Talk To Us.