Moisture build-up from daily activities such as exercising can shorten the expected lifespan of your behind-the-ear hearing aids by damaging the battery compartment, microphone or receiver. Here's an overview of how to spot moisture damage, what you can do to avoid it and how to dry out your hearing aids if they are exposed to moisture.
4 Signs of Moisture Damage
Your behind-the-ear hearing aids may be experiencing moisture damage if you notice any of the following:
- Sound fades in and out
- Voices seem distant or distorted
- Loud or high-pitched noises are inaudible
- Condensation in the earmold tubing
4 Tips For Preventing Moisture Damage
In addition to wiping your hearing aids with a soft, absorbent cloth each day, consider implementing the following tips for preventing moisture damage:
- Keep your hearing aids out of steamy rooms such as the bathroom when the shower is running or the kitchen when you're cooking dishes that produce a lot of steam. If you want to wash your face throughout the day, remove your hearing aids to prevent them being splashed with water.
- Use moisture-resistant hearing aid sleeves when walking in light rain or when in high-moisture environments such as at the beach. These small accessories are acoustically transparent, so won't impact on the sound quality of your hearing aids, and they simply slip over the section of your hearing aids that sit behind your ears.
- You can protect the microphones in your hearing aids by slipping wind and weather protectors over the front of each microphone. These small covers won't affect sound quality and are more discreet than hearing aid sleeves, but they only protect the microphone and need to be replaced every few months.
- When doing any kind of activity that will work up a sweat, use hearing aid sweat bands. They can cause some muffling of sound, but they are highly absorbent and fit over your hearing aids.
3 Steps to Drying Out Your Hearing Aids
If you do accidentally expose your hearing aids to moisture, you can minimise the risk of permanent damage by drying them out as soon as possible. Here's how:
- Remove your hearing aids and use a hairdryer to dry the condensation in the earmold tubing. The hairdryer must only be used on the cold air setting as warm air can damage your hearing aids.
- Use a soft, absorbent cloth to gently wipe each part of your hearing aids. Microfibre cloths are ideal.
- Remove the batteries from your hearing aids, which will allow air to circulate inside them and leave the batteries out overnight to allow the inside to dry fully.
If you suspect your hearing aids have been damaged, get them checked over as soon as possible. Severely damaged hearing aids may not be able to be repaired, but light moisture damage can often be fixed.