If you use hearing aids, you probably wear them from the moment you get up to right before bed. For most people, that’s around 18 hours a day. That means for 18 hours a day your hearing aid is exposed to earwax. If earwax builds up on the earmold of your device, it can cause:
- Feedback in the hearing aid
- Reduced sound quality
- Poor fit
- Damage to the hearing aid
Hearing Aids Lead to More Earwax
The presence of a foreign object in the ear stimulates more earwax production. This makes hearing aid users more susceptible to earwax buildup. Additionally, hearing aids can prevent the ear from cleaning itself naturally. Letting the ear clean itself is what is best recommended when it comes to dealing with earwax, but it becomes more difficult when you use hearing aids.
Avoid Cotton Swabs
Because hearing aid users deal with more earwax buildup, some might be tempted to try to remove earwax by themselves using a cotton swab. Do not do this. You risk pushing the earwax further into your ear, impacting it. Using a cotton swab to self-clean your ear also puts you at a greater risk of injury and can cause symptoms like earache, itchiness, difficulty hearing and fullness in the ear.
If you believe you are experiencing earwax buildup, the best thing to do is contact your health professional. They can examine your ears to see if you have impacted wax that needs to be removed. If you do, they may remove it in the office or prescribe earwax drops.
Cleaning Tips to Prevent Damage to Hearing Aids
When you first get hearing aids, you’ll receive instructions on how to care for them. One of the most essential aspects of care is daily cleaning. You can wipe your hearing aids off nightly with a soft, dry cloth. You can also purchase a hearing aid cleaning kit from a local grocery or drugstore like Elmwood Pharmacy. These come with several tools, including a wax removal brush to help keep your device clean and working effectively. Some other cleaning tips include:
- Storing your hearing aids in a cool, dry place when not in use.
- Change wax guards regularly
- Turn your device off when not in use
- Keep the battery door open to extend battery life
To learn more about earwax removal or to schedule an appointment with a hearing expert, contact Central Plains ENT today.