If you are one of the millions of people who suffer from hearing loss, you know how important it is to find a good pair of hearing aids. But once you have them, how long do they last? How often do you need to replace them? In this blog post, we will answer those questions and more!
The average lifespan of most hearing aids is three to seven years. Some styles may last longer. In-the-ear hearing aids have a four to five-year lifespan, whereas behind-the-ear hearing aids have a five to six-year lifespan. This is due to the type of hearing aid and how it’s worn. Because in-the-hear hearing aids are worn in this manner, they are more vulnerable to moisture and heat. As a result, they are prone to sweat and earwax exposure. The compartment that holds the behind-the-ear hearing aid sits on top of your ear, keeping it dry.
The life of a hearing aid, like any other item that is used on a daily basis, is also determined by how well it fits into your life. If your hearing has deteriorated, the hearing aid’s performance may not be able to keep up with your changing hearing needs.
Factors that Influence the Lifespan of Hearing Aids include:
- Materials Used to Manufacture the Device. These devices are designed to withstand the normal everyday hassle of some of our lifestyles, but they are frequently made of metal, plastic, polymers, silicone, and other materials that are susceptible to structural deterioration with time. The majority of today’s manufactured have a waterproofing coating that provides water and dust resistance; nevertheless, this does not imply they are indestructible.
- How often do you clean your hearing aid? Every day, you should clean your hearing aids. Grime and dirt can accumulate rapidly since these gadgets go with you everywhere you go. Although some hearing aids come with expert cleaning check-ups, annual or biannual sessions are insufficient to keep your device in good working order. If you want to know how to clean your hearing aids correctly, read our post!
- Where do you store your hearing aid? The storage and your lifestyle can affect the longevity of your hearing aid. Because we spend more time in damp or dusty environments than we might think. Always be careful to pay attention to your surroundings and avoid moisture and dust as much as possible. Hearing aids are fragile and should be stored in a cool, dry environment. The battery door should always be open when storing hearing aids.
- The Style/Type of Hearing Aid. BTE styles have a longer lifespan than ITE types. Because in-the-ear hearing aids utilize smaller components and are positioned in the moist inner ear canal, they are more prone to damage.
- The Wearer’s Physiology. Some people have oily skin and produce a great deal more earwax than others. These elements might have an impact on the device’s longevity.
- How sophisticated and strong the technology is. Because the hearing aid technology improves at a rapid pace, manufacturers may cease producing replacement components for old models. If your older model is no longer supported, you’ll have to replace or upgrade it.
Replacement or Adjustment (which is the best option)?
As previously said, hearing aids typically last around five years. While audiologists advise changing them every few years, the ideal moment to think about new devices varies considerably. If your hearing aids are not addressing your current hearing needs and you have a device that is less than five years old, but you are still aware that they don’t work, it’s more likely that you need to make some adjustments here and there rather than replace it.
Here are some reasons you may need to adjust your hearing aids:
- Whistling Sound. Some people hear continuous whistling noises while wearing their hearing aids. The whistling sound might be caused by anything from earwax buildup to environmental noise, therefore the device may not be the source of the problem. If you detect any excess earwax, see your doctor for removal.
- Unstable Volume. If you find that you can’t change the volume on your hearing aids anymore, consider getting them adjusted or fixed.
- Increased Hearing Loss. Hearing aids are made to aid with hearing loss, if you notice an increased hearing loss, an audiologist will be able to alter the device’s settings based on your current condition. If the sensitivity is too high, you might be advised to upgrade or replace your device.
- The Unexpected. Hearing aids, which are batteries and tiny sensors and computers that are programmed to provide sound improvement, may fail for various reasons, including hardware or software failure. However, don’t be alarmed! This does not imply you’ll need to buy a new device or pair; simply modifying the hearing aid or replacing the battery might be all it takes to solve the problem.
One of the most important things to consider when considering replacing or adjusting your device is how long you’ve had your hearing aid. As a result, if your device is older than 5 years and you are experiencing these issues, mentally prepare yourself for the prospect of having to replace it. You may find yourself using your hearing aid longer if you take good care of it!