What you should know about protecting your hearing aids in winter

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October 22, 2019

Protecting your hearing aids in winter

Winter is coming, and you may be preparing yourself by pulling your sweaters and coats out of storage, making sure you know where your gloves are, and prepping your house and car for winter weather. After all, you know the cold temperatures, ice, and snow can pose a risk. But did you know that winter weather can also create new risks for your hearing aids?

That’s because your hearing aids contain sensitive electronics. These electronics are particularly susceptible to water. If your hearing aids became wet due to snow or moisture condensation, it can reduce the charge of zinc-air batteries, so the battery charge will wear down more quickly. Furthermore, moisture in your hearing aid can corrode the device and prevent sound from reaching the microphone.

While most hearing aids nowadays are designed to protect them from cold temperatures and the related risks, problems may still arise. For example, if you go inside and outside, and then back inside, the frequent temperature change may cause condensation issues as the chilled device warms back up. When this moisture is not promptly removed, it can block airflow to the zinc-air batteries. This can decrease the performance of the device.

If you notice that your hearing aid sounds quieter than usual, or if you experience crackling sounds during winter, you may be experiencing problems due to moisture. To correct this and to prevent it in the future, be sure to thoroughly dry your device. Here are a few simple steps you can take to protect your hearing aids during winter and keep them working at an optimal level:

  • When indoors, wipe away any moisture from your hearing aids. You can do this by drying the outer shell and battery compartment. You may find a cotton swab useful for this.
  • Do not wear your hearing aids while participating in winter sports like snowboarding, sledding, or skiing. Remove them and store them in a warm, dry place.
  • Shield your ears from moisture when going out in cold temperatures by wearing a hat, scarf, or earmuffs. We recommend using fabrics that breathe in order to prevent perspiration if you are exerting yourself, like shoveling snow or jogging. Special hearing aid sweatbands are also available. These are designed to soak up any extra moisture and protect your devices from debris.
  • Use a hearing aid dehumidifier to dry out your hearing aids overnight.
  • Carry extra batteries with you in case the weather or moisture makes your hearing aids drain their charge faster than usual.
  • Turn on your device’s noise reduction setting if you are going to be around dangerously loud noise exposure, like snow blowers or snowmobiles.

With these easy steps, you can ensure that your hearing aids are protected during winter and continue functioning at peak levels. If you would like to learn more about how to protect your hearing aids during winter or any other time of year, we welcome you to contact our audiology office today. We are eager to help!

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