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by: Shayne Taplin, HIS

Why would anyone go through the time, effort, and expense to purchase hearing aids and not wear them?  It doesn’t make sense, but it happens too often.

Here are five reasons why and how to eliminate the chance of this happening to you.

LACK OF MOTIVATION: Some people are not fully committed to wearing hearing aids.  They may feel pressure from their family members or they may feel that their hearing is not “bad” enough to warrant using hearing aids.  They may feel that wearing a hearing aid will make them seem old to others or to themselves.  Whatever the reason, the result can be negative and cause the hearing aids to be set aside. Solution:  The first step is to accept that they have a hearing problem and have the desire to help themselves.

ADAPTATION TIME: It is important for a new hearing aid user to understand that it takes a few weeks to several months for the brain to process the new sounds that it is receiving.  Too many people believe that hearing aids are a quick fix, and they will instantly hear perfectly.  A new hearing aid user may become frustrated with the time and effort needed to fully adapt to their new devices and simply give up.   Solution:  It is important to be patient with one’s self, and understand that change can be challenging.  Change does not happen overnight.  It is also helpful when loved ones understand this and are patient too.

UNREASONABLE EXPECTATIONS:  While hearing devices will improve one’s hearing, they may not be perfect in every situation.  This realization can be very disappointing and cause the focus to be on situations where the hearing aids are not producing a desired result versus situations where they are working well.  Solution:  Unfortunately hearing aids will not give you Superman’s hearing, nor will they restore your hearing to what it was before.  However, good communication with your hearing care provider will help them to program and adjust your hearing aids so you get the best possible result.

POOR FIT: Sometimes a hearing aid can be too tight or too loose, causing discomfort.  One may not want to “seem like a pest” and schedule frequent visits with their hearing care professional complaining that their devices are uncomfortable. Instead they and just put them away.  Solution:  Do not wait for to notify your hearing care provider of any discomfort.  Most adjustments are quick, and the result is better satisfaction with the devices, as well as, no pain.

NOT WORKING:  Occasionally hearing aids need cleaning or maintenance. Perhaps the user feels the hearing aids are not providing the same benefit as before. Solution: Schedule regular maintenance appointments with your hearing care provider to ensure your hearing devices are in the best possible condition.  Also, have your hearing checked annually to make sure any program changes are addressed.

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