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Maria E. Sakellarides, AuD
Realistic Expectations
Advanced Hearing Health Care

Realistic Expectations

Hearing aids work very well when fit and adjusted appropriately. They amplify sound. You might find that you like one hearing aid better than the other. The left and right hearing aids will probably not fit exactly the same. Nonetheless, hearing aids should be comfortable with respect to the physical fit and sound quality. Hearing aids do not restore normal hearing and are not as good as normal hearing. You will be aware of the hearing aids in your ears.
Your Own Voice
Your own voice may sound different to you, but to everyone else you will sound the same. You may sound like you have an echo or that you feel plugged or like you are speaking in a barrel, this is normal and you will get used to it in a few days.
Getting Used to Hearing Aids
Some people take longer than others to become adjusted to hearing aids. There is no perfect way to learn about hearing aids. Patience is a virtue. Most people do not lose their hearing overnight, so getting used to hearing aids is not an overnight process, either.
Physical Fit
Hearings aids should never be uncomfortable or cause pain to the ear. They should not work their way out of the ear with jaw movement. Occasionally, customized hearing aids will have to be remade.
Feedback or Whistling
Whistling or feedback may be due to an inadequate fit or a build of earwax that needs to be removed by your hearing healthcare professional. Whistling or feedback can also occur when you touch the microphone(s) of the hearing aids.
One-on-One Listening Situations
With hearing aids on, you should be able to hear most of what is being said. Visual cues are very important too, even for those individuals that do not have hearing loss.
Hearing aids do their best job within a distance of six to eight feet.
Noisy Listening Situations
Noisy listening situations are the most difficult situations to hear in, even for normal hearing people. Hearing aids now have features that make noisy environments more tolerable, however, hearing aids cannot eliminate background noise.
Expect repairs on hearing aids. The hearing aids go into a hostile environment everyday, it is warm, sticky and moist. Given this environment, working components of the hearing aids are bound to break down with time.
Batteries can last from five days to two weeks, depending on the usage time and the size of the battery.
New Technology
The benefit of digital technology is that soft sounds are audible, conversational speech is comfortable and loud sounds are tolerable. The average life expectancy of a hearing aid is approximately five years. New technology is updated frequently, just like computers.
The most important thing to remember is that wearing hearing aids helps to improve your quality of life.
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