Congratulations, you have decided to do something about your hearing loss, it is an exciting time. Transitioning back into the hearing world is not always as easy as slipping a hearing instrument into your ear and moving on with life. With patience and some encouragement from your friends and family you’ll adjust to your new hearing aids in no time.
Understanding your hearing loss
As a new hearing aids wearer you need to have a solid understanding of your specific hearing loss. Armed with that knowledge your can set realistic expectations for how much your new hearing aids will improve your hearing. Your hearing instrument specialist should discuss these things with you and make additional materials available for you to learn more. Southwestern Hearing Centers offers counseling sessions, books, home study materials and videos to make your hearing rehabilitation process as smooth as possible.
When you first bring your new hearing aids home it is important to remember the job of hearing isn’t done by the ears alone. The brain plays a major role in interpreting the sounds your ears hear. It is your brain that causes subtle sounds like rustling clothes or a ticking clock to seem really loud when you are first wearing your new hearing aids. Your brain has not had to interpret those sounds in some time. With time it can relearn to interpret all sounds correctly and those more subtle sounds will be subtle again.
Take your time
That’s why it is imperative to start wearing your new hearing aids slowly. Sit in a quiet room and get used to sounds that you haven’t heard in a long time. Try wearing your new hearing aids for as many hours a day as you can. Then wear them for a little longer each day. You will need to get used to the feeling of something in or around your ear.
Do not attempt to wear your hearing aid to a cocktail party or crowded restaurant shortly after bringing them home. You will become overwhelmed with all the sounds. Slowly put yourself in situations with different noise levels. Try talking to different people so that you can relearn to distinguish between sound patterns. Listening in situations where there is a lot of background noise will be the most difficult. Take note of other situations you find difficult and talk with your hearing specialist about them. They can adjust and tune the new hearing aids to meet your needs.
Speak up for yourself
As you are getting used to your new hearing aids don’t be afraid to tell people about it. Simply explaining to people that you have hearing loss should make conversing less stressful. Be sure to face the person you are talking with so you can pay close attention to their facial expression and gestures. Instead of asking them to repeat when you don’t understand ask them to rephrase what they said.
The most important thing to remember is that it takes time to get used to your new hearing aids. You’ve already taken the step of admitting you have a hearing loss, don’t give up now. Listening will become easier each day if you take the time to let your hearing aid help you.