In the winter, it's important to take special precautions to protect your hearing aid. During this time of the year, your hearing aid may experience rapid shifts in temperature as you move between heated buildings and freezing outdoor temperatures. These frequent temperature changes can allow condensation to form on your device, potentially damaging its delicate inner workings.
Leave Your Hearing Aid at Home During Winter Sports
If winter means heart-pumping action on the slopes for you, consider leaving your hearing aid at home when you venture out. Even on a frigid day, outdoor sports will make you sweaty. In these conditions, moisture can easily seep into your hearing aid, especially if you tumble into the snow on occasion.
Don't Leave Your Hearing Aid Out in the Cold
Although you can get away with storing your hearing aid in your car's glove box when temperatures are mild, it's an unwise decision in the winter. Always keep track of your hearing aid if you're not currently wearing it. Keep it on your person whenever possible; your stable body temperature is better for the device than an environment where it may experience rapid shifts between hot and cold.
Take Care of Your Hearing Aid Batteries
Like all other batteries, hearing aid batteries do not handle extreme temperature changes well. Keep your supply of hearing aid batteries in a temperature-regulated indoor space. During winter, spend a few minutes to take out your battery and wipe it down to keep it dry. Leave the battery compartment open every night so that you can easily replace the battery in the morning.
Watch Out for Excessive Noise
A quiet afternoon neighborhood walk can get loudly interrupted by the impressive roaring of a snow blower. If you're venturing out or planning to run your own snow blower, be sure to adjust your hearing aid accordingly. Increasing the noise reduction level is a good way to protect the health of your ears. Wearing noise-cancelling earmuffs is another good way to protect your ears and your hearing aid.
Cover Your Ears
Avoid going outside with your ears uncovered during the winter. Earmuffs and hats should always be worn to keep the temperature around your hearing aid as constant as possible. Wearing a coat with an attached hood is a good way to always have ear protection on hand even if you forget your earmuffs at home.
Act Quickly if Your Hearing Aid Stops Working
When condensation builds up in a hearing aid, it can cause a number of issues, including a build-up of static or frequent breaks in its functionality. If you notice that your hearing aid has stopped working after a trip outside, take it out and open up the battery compartment, allowing condensation to evaporate and dry out the device. If the hearing aid still isn't working, you may need to try a few additional techniques.
- Leave the hearing aid in a bowl of rice overnight to draw out moisture
- Use a hearing aid dehumidifier to remove excess moisture
- Blow a fan directly onto the hearing aid
- Place the hearing aid near a weak source of heat, such as a lamp
If your hearing aid is still not functioning after following these steps, you may need to have an expert take a look.
Don't let winter's chill disrupt your normal life by making you worried about your hearing aid. Exercising good caution with your hearing aid can prevent many of the common issues caused by temperature changes.