Congratulations! You’ve received your first pair of hearing aids and have taken that first step towards better hearing and better living. So what happens next? Well now it’s time to get acclimated, or “used to”, wearing your new hearing aids.

One of the best things you can do to set yourself up for success is to remember the following: 1) time, 2) practice, and 3) patience. First, getting used to wearing hearing aids will take time; it isn’t an overnight process. Second, you will need to practice using your hearing aids, putting them in and taking them out, and caring for them. And third, be patient with yourself. No one expects you to be able to use your hearing aids perfectly right off the bat and neither should you.

Keep these things in mind and your journey to better hearing will be smooth sailing. And in order to help you along, here a few things to expect with your first pair of hearing aids while you adapt during those first few weeks and months.

What to expect in the early days

During the first few days or weeks of using your first pair of hearing aids, things will feel and sound a lot different. And that can be an overwhelming experience. But fear not. All these experiences are simply part of the process of adjusting to your new hearing aids. Keep wearing them, and over time you won’t notice those differences as much. In fact, you may notice how natural everything sounds now and how much easier it is to hear and understand others.

Physical differences

During those first few days of wearing hearing aids, your ears may feel strange at first. After all, it’s not every day you have something sitting in or on your ear for hours on end. And of course, those little “things” are in fact little computers that process sounds and transmit it to your ears. So your ears may feel a little uncomfortable at the beginning. But so long as you continue to wear them correctly, you will get used to this new feeling.

Of course, if you’re experiencing more than just a little discomfort, you may be wearing your hearing aids incorrectly. If that’s the case, consult your hearing specialist for guidance.

Sound differences

Of course, the most noticeable difference you’ll experience will be the sound. And what may sound the most strange are voices. You may notice that both others’ voices and your own may sound unnatural. This is because you are getting used to hearing those high-frequency sounds—“s,” “f,” and “t”—that you’ve been missing or hearing differently for years. This can be distracting and make it difficult to have conversations, but hang in there; it is all normal and temporary.

Furthermore, you’ll start hearing everyday sounds again. Just like someone who starts wearing glasses and is suddenly able to see smaller details again (e.g., individual tree branches or letters on street signs), your improved hearing will allow you to start hearing those everyday sounds that you’ve been without or have maybe forgotten about. You’ll start hearing the hum of your refrigerator or birds chirping out the window. For some, these new sounds may sound dull or irritating at first. However, as you get used to wearing your hearing aids over time, these noises will begin to blend into the background.

Environmental differences

And speaking of background noise, background noise may feel especially loud. Crowded situations like restaurants or large family gatherings may feel very distracting since all those surrounding voices are now amplified. You may feel understandably overwhelmed during these situations as you try to focus on the person speaking in front of you. Remember, all of this is perfectly normal. And rest assured, even those without hearing loss likely aren’t enjoying the noise either.

Top tips for acclimating to hearing aids  

So now that you know what to expect, let’s discuss ways to to adapt to your first pair of hearing aids faster. Below, we’ve outlined 5 tips from the hearing specialists here at Hearing HealthCare Associates.

1. Ensure your hearing aids are on/in correctly

Wearing your hearing aids is one of the best ways you can both 1) get used to them faster, and 2) get the most out of your hearing aid experience. And we understand that wearing them correctly, and even putting them on, can take some getting used to. Try inserting them in front of a mirror so you can see exactly where and how the hearing aid is sitting.

2. Try to wear your hearing aids all day

Wearing your hearing aids as much as possible each day is also incredibly beneficial. First, it helps your brain get used to those everyday sounds you haven’t heard in a while. And with time, you should soon be able to tune out those bothersome background sounds with time and practice. And second, it will help remind you to use them consistently. Again, the more you use your hearing aids, the more you get out of your experience. Try setting an alarm in the morning and evening to remind yourself to put them in and take them out.

3. Practice having conversations

Now that your brain is receiving more sound signals, it’s important to reestablish the connections between sound, voices and body language. We suggest talking with others to help that process along. Start with one person and progress to larger groups as you feel more and more comfortable. Make a concerted effort to focus on whoever is speaking. And remember, you got this.

4. Ease into noisy situations

When it comes to background noise, slow and steady wins the race. Start by wearing your hearing aids at home and build up to noisier situations. Maybe try a walk in a park next before moving on to restaurants, family dinner parties, and other lively events. This will help you learn how to tune out extra noise and concentrate on the sounds that matter most like people’s voices.

5. Don’t give up

Stay the course; you can do this. And always keep in mind that everyone’s hearing needs are unique. Adapting to hearing aids may come quicker for some than for others. But remember it’s not a race and you’re not competing with anyone. With time, practice and patience, your hearing will improve and eventually feel perfectly natural. Stay positive, focus on the improvement, and enjoy the experience of your whole world coming to life again with better hearing.

Take Your First Steps Towards Better Hearing with Hearing HealthCare Associates

Are you ready to start your journey to better hearing? If you suspect you or someone you love may have hearing loss, talk to a hearing specialist at Hearing HealthCare Associates about next steps. With a proper hearing screening and comprehensive hearing exam, our staff will be able to determine if you have hearing loss and whether it’s time for your first pair of hearing aids.

Find out what noises you may be missing! Schedule an appointment today.

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