Hearing aids are complex devices needing to be accurately adjusted to the specific and often subjectively changing requirements of the individual user. It's important to know what to expect from a hearing aid, as any mismatch between expectations and the functionality of assistive devices results in a common pattern of rejection and abandonment. If not adjusted correctly, hearing aids may produce a distorted sound. There are a number of other causes for sound distortion or malfunction, and some of them are described below.
If stored incorrectly, hearing aids can damage easily. Therefore it is important to take care of your devices. Keep your hearing aids in a dry and safe place away from children and pets.
If batteries go dead, they have to be replaced immediately. Discarding batteries must always be performed very carefully. Clean batteries with a dry cloth or replace them with new ones if they are running low.
To prevent your hearing aids from breaking down, clean them every day with a soft fabric. Do not use cleaners containing alcohol because they damage the internal parts and circuitry. Use an anti-humidity kit to prevent moisture from entering the device and damaging its components. Change filters or remove earwax and other debris. Do not use sharp instruments but a small brush. When ear moulds become dry, stiff, cracked or discoloured, it is best to replace them.
While distorted sound may be caused by low volume or incorrect adjustment, it may also occur due to damage to the hearing aid or defective parts. In this situation you must schedule an appointment with your hearing care professional to suggest the best course of action.
If your hearing aid does not automatically detect that it needs to use the telecoil and is switched to the telecoil setting, it may also produce a distorted sound. To fix the issue you have to switch to microphone signal. Additionally, if your hearing aid, ear mould and slim tubes are fitting poorly, then you should consult your audiologist for professional advice.
Accumulated earwax may block sounds from entering the middle ear. Which means you must clean your ear canals regularly and safely: Our post, "How to Get Rid of Earwax at home" explains how. Never attempt to remove a hardened earwax blockage by yourself because as this could damage your ear.
Understanding the causes of hearing aid distortion of sound is important but it is also important to know that you should allow some time for your brain to adjust when you use hearing aids for the first time. Trying to adjust to an unnatural sound could be disappointing, exhausting, and even stressful but once your brain adapts, a quality pair of hearing aids should be able make a significant improvement in quality of life.