If you are expecting to pop your new hearing aids in and immediately hear perfectly, you will be in for a disappointment. Although hearing aids and other hearing loss solutions are powerful and hi tech, they cannot completely reverse hearing loss. What they can do, however, is provide a highly improved listening experience and significantly lessen the burden of hearing loss.
While we can give you data and statistics from the latest studies, the truth is that everyone’s adjustment period to new hearing aids is different. There are all kinds of factors that determine how long it will take to cross this particular bridge including length and severity of hearing loss, personal motivation and the support resources available, to name a few.
Over time, with patience and perseverance, the adjustment to new hearing aids can provide all sorts of positive benefits, like improved relationships, a boost in confidence and even a decrease in your risk of future cognitive decline. By committing to your hearing health today, you will reap the rewards for many years to come.
Here are five fundamentals that will help you transition to your new hearing aids.
Keep Realistic Expectations
The length of time that it takes for people to successfully transition to their new hearing aids varies widely. As mentioned previously, there are many variables at play. But one piece of useful advice might be to double whatever expectation you have about how long it will take you.
Particularly if your hearing loss has progressed for many years, adjusting to new hearing aids means sending quite a bit more sound information to your brain. While the brain is a brilliant tool, it still can take many weeks for it to re-learn how to hear certain frequencies.
Learning a bit about your hearing aids will bolster your confidence as you begin the daily habit of wearing them. You can read up on the parts of a hearing aid and their basic function by doing a quick Google search. Your audiologist’s office might also offer educational opportunities to broaden your knowledge. Learning how to take advantage of the bells and whistles of your model, like bluetooth or an associated app, can make the practice of wearing your hearing aids much more fun.
Slow And Steady Wins The Race
Wearing your hearing aids might feel exhausting and overwhelming at first. That’s completely normal and it might last for some time. Begin by practicing with your hearing aids for just bite-sized amounts of time. In a 2015 study, researchers discovered that people who kept a slow pace in increasing the amount of time they wore their hearing aids each day ended up more satisfied than people who began wearing their hearing aids full-time from the start.
Persistence Is Key
As you become more used to your hearing aids, you can begin to wear them for increasingly long periods of time. Especially at first, it’s important to work on this habit daily. This is where those realistic expectations you set come in. When you feel frustrated, remember that this is a marathon and not a sprint. In fact, it’s much like training for a marathon. If you ran a mile each week for three weeks then tried to run 26, you would probably feel the goal was impossible. But, with proper training and persistence, the goal of 26 miles (or improved hearing!) becomes attainable.
Keep Your Audiologist Close
People who rely on their audiologist for moral and technical support during their adjustment period tend to report a higher performance of their hearing aids. The follow-up appointments are recommended because the fitting process is an ongoing one. Participating in these appointments, reporting your experience to your audiologist and opening up to feedback will result in a more comfortable fit and enhanced performance.
Schedule A Hearing Consultation
If you’ve noticed recent changes in your hearing health or if you’re ready to give a hearing loss solution a try, get in touch with us today. Our team of highly trained hearing health professionals will lead you through a simple hearing exam. From there, we’ll guide you through your results and determine whether you are a good candidate for hearing aids or another intervention.