“Why Don’t My Hearing Aids Fit Like They Used To?”
Today’s question is something we don’t hear too often, but can be a concern to hearing aid wearers. Every once in a while, we will have a patient come into our office concerned because they think that their hearing aids (if they are custom in-the-ear models) or ear molds (for the behind-the-ear models) have “worn away” because they simply aren’t staying in anymore.
While there is a chance that the mold or hearing device has changed, usually we find the problem happens because the person wearing the device has changed! A weight loss of even 5-8 pounds can actually cause your hearing aids to fit looser, which, in addition to being less comfortable, can cause whistling or feedback.
Weight loss is not the only problem, though. Did you know that as you age, cartilage (the plastic-like stuff in your ears and nose) never stops growing? Even your ear lobes can elongate from the effects of gravity. So, if it seems like your ears are bigger than they were 10 years ago, you’re probably right!
What does this mean for people who wear hearing aids? If you notice that your hearing aids are looser than they used to be or if they start to whistle or squeal, make an appointment with your audiologist to have the fit checked. Oftentimes the change is very small and can be fixed in the office by building-up the hearing aid or mold. Occasionally a new mold will need to be made. We always recommend that our patients have a yearly hearing exam, and as part of the exam, the audiologist will check the fit of the current hearing device. You’ve invested a lot of money, time and effort to hear better– you might as well make sure that your investment is working as well as possible!
To schedule a hearing evaluation with one of our Best of State audiologists, call our office at 801-770-0801.