How to Clean Hearing AidsPublished On: May 22, 2019
Did you know that nearly 30 million adults in the United States could benefit from wearing hearing aids?
If you’re interested in experiencing the benefits that hearing aids have to offer, it’s important to also understand how to maintain them properly. This includes changing their batteries and cleaning them regularly.
Not sure how to clean hearing aids? Keep reading.
Listed below are some tips to help you clean your hearing aids properly.
The Importance of Cleaning Hearing Aids
There are lots of reasons to make cleaning your hearing aids a priority. Some of the greatest benefits you’ll experience when you clean them regularly include:
- Prevent damage that could affect sound transmission (dirt, debris, and film can all alter the way your hearing aids pick up sound)
- Save time and money on repairs
- Extend their lifespan and maintain sound quality
Essentially, if you want your hearing aids to work properly and last as long as possible, you need to make sure they’re getting cleaned on a regular basis.
Before You Start Cleaning
Some people avoid cleaning their hearing aids as often as they should because they’re worried about accidentally dropping or damaging them. Luckily, you can avoid serious damage by following these simple steps.
Read the Manual
Start by reading your hearing aid manual. This will help you get familiar with the various parts of your hearing aids. Your manual also likely has information about which products to use when cleaning your hearing aids.
It’s also a good idea to talk to your hearing healthcare provider before you start cleaning them. They can also recommend products and give you tips on how to avoid damaging your hearing aids as you clean them.
While you can usually clean your hearing aids on your own without any issues, it’s important to remember that you should leave other, more technical maintenance issues, to a professional. Never try to repair them by yourself.
Get the Right Tools
After you’ve read the manual and gotten the go-ahead from your hearing healthcare provider, it’s time to gather your equipment and make sure you’re prepared to start cleaning your hearing aids.
In most cases, you’ll just need the following tools to clean your hearing aids:
- Wax removal brush
- Wax pick or wire loop
- Soft, clean cloth
- Vent cleaner
Most hearing aid cleaning kits contain all these tools. You can buy these kits online or from your hearing healthcare provider. You can also find them at most drugstores.
How to Clean Hearing Aids Properly
Once you’ve gathered your tools, it’s time to start cleaning your hearing aids.
The following tips apply no matter what kind of hearing aid model and style you wear:
- Turning your hearing aid upside down when cleaning the ports and openings so debris can fall out
- Open up the battery compartment at night to extend the battery’s lifespan and air out the compartment
- Brush the battery compartment clean whenever you change the battery
There are also some more specific techniques you’ll need to utilize depending on the type of hearing aid you wear.
In-the-Ear Hearing Aids
If you wear an in-the-ear hearing aid, follow these steps:
- Use a wax removal brush to clean the microphone cover, vent openings, and receiver
- Use a wax pick or wire loop to get rid of any stubborn material caught in the air vent
- Use a vent cleaner for larger vents
- Wipe the whole hearing aid down with a soft cloth
Remember, never use any water, alcohol, or chemical wipes when cleaning in-the-ear hearing aids.
Behind-the-Ear Hearing Aids
If you wear behind-the-ear hearing aids, follow these steps:
- Use a brush to gently dust off the hearing aid
- Remove the earmold and brush it clean
- Use the wax pick or wire loop to remove stubborn debris from the earmold
- Wipe the whole hearing aid and earmold down with a soft cloth
You can also wash the earmold with warm, soapy water as needed. If you do use water, be sure to let the earmold and tubing dry thoroughly before you reattach it. Never use chemical cleaners unless they’re specially formulated for cleaning earmolds.
Receiver-in-the-Canal Hearing Aids
If you wear receiver-in-the-canal hearing aids, follow these steps:
- Gently brush the hearing aid off to get rid of any dirt or debris
- Gently massage the dome tip with your thumbs to get rid of any stubborn leftover material
- Wipe the whole hearing aid down with a soft cloth
You may also need to replace the dome if it has become worn out or misshapen. You may also need to replace it if there is any buildup or a blockage that can’t be removed.
Never use any kind of water or chemical wipes to clean receiver-in-the-canal hearing aids.
If you follow these instructions, it’ll be easy for you to clean your hearing aids. Keep these extra tips in mind to make sure they stay clean and continue functioning properly:
Remember to exercise caution when cleaning your hearing aids. Certain parts of them — the microphone and receiver, for example — are very delicate and can break easily.
Try setting down a towel on the counter before you start cleaning your headphones. That way, if you drop them, they’ll be less likely to roll off the counter and break.
Stick to a Cleaning Schedule
Remember to stick to a consistent cleaning schedule, too. This will help you avoid damage. It’ll also make the cleaning process in the future easier since there will be less wax and dirt buildup.
On a daily basis, gently brush the microphone cover of your hearing aids. This will get rid of wax and debris. You should also wipe the whole hearing aid down with a soft cloth.
Every week, you should also dedicate a little more time to removing dirt and wax with your wax pick or wire loop. You may also need to check and replace the wax guard if you wear hearing aids that have one.
Need More Hearing Aid Help?
Now that you know how to clean hearing aids properly, you might be interested in learning more about how to care for your hearing aids and keep them working properly.
No matter what kind of help you’re looking for, we’ve got information for you. Check out our online resources today for all kinds of great tips and tricks.