top of page
JUST Got Your HEARING AIDS? How to Get Started.
Starkey Hearing

JUST Got Your HEARING AIDS? How to Get Started.

Just got your hearing aids? In this video, Jamie Hand, Au.D., explains why it takes a while to get used to wearing new hearing aids and provides tips for how new wearers can speed that acclimation process up. If you just got your hearing aids, congratulations! Getting hearing aids to treat hearing loss is an important step, but it's not the finish line. Because unlike wearing glasses, the benefits aren't always immediate or obvious. When you first begin to use hearing aids, your brain will be startled once it begins receiving signals that it's been missing. Your brain needs time to get reacquainted with high frequency sounds of speech and other noises. Adapting to hearing aids is a process that takes time, commitment, education, and patience. Five steps to hearing success: The following principles have been used by thousands of hearing aid wearers to successfully transition to better hearing health. 1.) Acceptance - surprisingly, the first step begins before the purchase of hearing aids. Admitting and accepting your permanent hearing loss prepares you to get the help you need, to stop hiding or denying a hearing problem, and to end the pretense that you understand speech when in reality you may not. 2.) Positive attitude - step two is about making a personal choice to achieve better hearing with a positive attitude. Simply purchasing hearing aids does not signal success. To overcome hearing loss, you must have a desire to learn and determination to increase your ability to hear. People who approach hearing aid use with a positive attitude are far more likely to achieve success. 3.) Education - the most effective remedy for hearing loss is personal education. The more you know about your hearing loss and treatment, the more actively you can participate in your adjustment to hearing aid use. Hearing requires more than the ears. It’s a complex function that requires the cooperation of your brain and other senses. 4.) Realistic expectations - the fourth principle of success is to set realistic expectations. Hearing aids will help you hear better, but not perfectly. Focus on your improvement and remember the learning curve can take anywhere from six weeks to six months. Success comes from practice and commitment. 5.) Practice and patience - finally, the fifth principle of success is a combination of practice, time, and patience. Once you have logged sufficient hours for your brain to re-acclimate, you’ll be able to hear without thinking so much about hearing. It’s a good idea to begin with a schedule in which you wear your hearing aids part time and gradually work up to wearing them from the time you rise until the time you go to bed. Many hearing professionals recommend listening to books on tape as a way to practice hearing and understanding. In the first few weeks, if it’s too tiring, rest, then try again. Reach out for support and stick with it. The payoff is immense. Most people don’t know what to expect from hearing aids. Misperceptions and second-hand experience with bulky, whistling, old-fashioned analog devices continue to influence the way people think about all hearing aids. Hearing aids have changed dramatically from a generation ago — from outward appearance to internal technology — making them vastly more appealing and effective. Getting acclimated to wearing your new hearing aids is different for each person (sometimes taking up to two to three months). But once you are, you should notice a big difference in how the world sounds. 1.) Your ability to hear and understand others should be improved 2.) Other people’s voices shouldn’t sound distorted, harsh, tinny, sharp, booming or muffled 3.) The sound of your own voice should be “normal,” not sound like you’re in a barrel 4.) The intensity and quality of familiar sounds should be sharp, bright and clear — not dull or irritating 5.) In a crowded room with many people talking at once, sound should be loud but not deafening 6.) Wearing hearing aids in both ears should help you identify the location of a sound or voice 7.) Hearing and communicating in quiet environments (home, work, doctor’s office) should be improved 8.) Your ability to hear and understand speech in environments with background noise (restaurants or dinner parties, for instance) should be improved 9.) Your hearing aids should help you understand speech in larger environments where there is reverberation (lecture halls, worship spaces, movie theaters) 10.) Loud sounds (sirens, traffic, construction sounds) should not be uncomfortable but you should hear them clearly
bottom of page