Have you just selected a pair of hearing aids, and feel excited to wear hearing devices for the first time? When you first slip on hearing aids, it can be a jarring experience. If you’ve been living with untreated hearing loss for several years, you’ve probably forgotten what normal hearing is like, and you don’t know how many sounds you’ve been missing. Adjusting to new hearing aids usually takes some time, so be patient with yourself as your brain relearns how to hear.
Everything Seems Loud
When you first start wearing hearing aids, you may think that everything seems very loud. You’re not used to hearing all the traffic noises, and voices seem much louder than before. Your hearing loss was a very gradual process, and you didn’t notice as you slowly lost more sounds. Your current hearing abilities are the work of years of hearing loss, and undoing that in one day can be very shocking. Some sounds will seem very loud, and sounds like the background hum of machinery or traffic noise, wind noise, or even voices in a cafe, will all seem new and strange when you first put on hearing aids.
Practice Makes Perfect
When you first start wearing hearing aids, all the sounds around you can seem overwhelming. You’ll be hearing many more sounds than before, but your brain isn’t used to interpreting these sounds, focusing on important sounds, and filtering out background sound. You may feel easily annoyed that sounds seem different, and that it’s hard to sift through all the sounds around you. Getting used to a new hearing aid takes some time, so don’t give up when you feel frustrated. Commit to wearing your devices for several hours every day, and relearn how to hear all the sounds around you. Your brain will soon be focusing on what you want to hear, and background noise won’t seem so loud.
Be Patient with Yourself
Unlike glasses which will change your vision immediately, hearing aids facilitate a complex process involving your ears and your brain. Be patient with yourself as you adjust to your new hearing aids, and don’t give up. Wear them as much as you can, and you’ll be amazed as you relearn how to determine where a sound is coming from, which sounds are worth focusing on, and which programs and settings will help you hear in each listening environment.
Be sure to rest well during the transition period, because retraining your ears and brain to hear is exhausting. Adapting to your hearing aids is like retraining a muscle you haven’t used in a while, so be patient and rest well while you go through the adjustment period.
Ask for Help
Hearing aids are usually readjusted at least once during the first few days of wearing them. After your initial hearing aid fitting, you’ll wear your devices for a week to get accustomed to them, and then visit your hearing health specialist for a follow up appointment to make sure the hearing aids are calibrated to perfectly fit your hearing needs. Tell them as much as possible about your listening experience so they can make the fit even better.
Talk about your experiences with family and friends, and tell your hearing aid provider about your adjustment period. You probably got hearing aids with a lot of expectations as to how they would fit into your life and help you hear, and your experience may not perfectly match your expectations in the first few days.
Talk to Other Hearing Aid Wearers
As you go through the adjustment period, and start to enjoy all the benefits of clear hearing, talk to other hearing aid wearers to learn more about their experiences. They also went through an adjustment period, and can share some tips to make the transition as smooth as possible. They’ll encourage you to stick with it, and enjoy all the new sounds you’re hearing for the first time in years.
Hearing Health Care Services
Choosing to treat your hearing loss doesn’t end when you select your new devices. At Hearing Health Care Services, we’re committed to helping you adjust to your new hearing aids, learning all the programs and settings, recalibrating your devices to provide even better sound, and making sure you’re able to hear effortlessly.