Your hearing aid requires daily cleaning to prevent earwax accumulation in the receiver and vent openings and to keep moisture from entering into the internal electronic components in the shell or causing condensation in the receiver tube. Earwax needs to be brushed off daily and you must dry your hearing aid fully at night to prevent moisture accumulation. You will also need to have your hearing aid professionally cleaned by your health care provider to remove excess dust and dirt buildup on the internal electronics. Between professional cleanings, here's how to clean and maintain your hearing aid to ensure that it functions perfectly.
Remove Wax From Your Hearing Aid Daily With a Wax Brush and Dry Cloth
Even a small layer of wax on the receiver can greatly muffle the sound amplified by the hearing aid and cause it to stop functioning correctly. You'll need to clean accumulated wax off of the receiver, the vents on the shell and the shell itself every day to keep your hearing aid in good condition.
The best time to clean your hearing aid is at the end of the day. The wax on the hearing aid will still be soft and easy to remove with a wax brush. Use the wax brush to gently scrape any wax off of the receiver openings and the vents on the hearing aid, then gently rub the entire hearing aid with a clean, dry cloth to remove any wax from the shell. When you're cleaning the openings, make sure to angle them downwards so that wax falls away from the hearing aid instead of into the internal components.
Some hearing aids come with wax picks or wire coils that are inserted into the receiver. You can use these tools to gently dig earwax out of the receiver openings. Only use these tools if they are specifically designed for your hearing aid – using tools that are too large for the receiver openings can push the receiver tube into the hearing aid shell, which will prevent the hearing aid from functioning until it is fixed by a professional.
Avoid Humid Environments to Keep Your Hearing Aid Shell and Receiver Tube Dry
Moisture can harm the electronics inside the hearing aid shell and can cause condensation in the receiver tube, preventing the hearing aid from functioning. Remove your hearing aid and place it in a container before entering humid environments such as bathrooms or locker rooms. At the end of the day, remove the battery from the hearing aid and leave the battery compartment open. This allows air to circulate through the hearing aid and prevents excess moisture from building.
If you live in a very humid environment or perspire often due to a demanding job or physical exercise, it may be necessary to invest in a dehumidifier unit for your hearing aid. These inexpensive devices will absorb any moisture that may have entered into your hearing aid shell or your receiver tube.
Have Your Hearing Aid Serviced Regularly by Your Health Care Provider
Even with perfect daily cleaning and maintenance, your hearing aid will need to be regularly serviced by your audiologist in order to fully clean the internal components of the hearing aid. Your audiologist will give you a recommended schedule for this deep cleaning.
You may need to have your hearing aid cleaned more often if you work in a dusty environment or live in an area with sandy soil. Dirt and debris can enter into the hearing aid through the vents, where it will settle on the electrical components inside. One common problem associated with this is a static noise coming from the hearing aid receiver, especially when you are adjusting the hearing aid's volume. That indicates that debris has settled on the contacts that control the volume. If you commonly suffer from this problem, have your hearing aid professionally cleaned more often. Contact a doctor, like Mark Montgomery MD FACS, for more help.