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Things you should never do when cleaning your hearing aids

Cleaning hearing aids

A brush and a wax pick can help to clean your hearing aids, but these items aren’t household staples that you’ll readily have on hand. It might be tempting to forgo your specialized hearing aid cleaning tools in favor of cotton swabs, pen caps, and other similarly-slender objects, but doing so is ill-advised.

Since moisture can damage many hearing aids, be sure to never use rubbing alcohol or any other cleaning solutions unless instructed to do so by your hearing aid specialist. Even liquids that specify hearing aid compatibility are not necessary and should be avoided, as you can easily clear your hearing aid with the help of solid objects such as your wax pick and brush. Some hearing aids, CAN tolerate water, but it’s always best to confirm with a professional before doing so.

When gently wiping your hearing aids free of any blockage, only use a cleaning cloth designated for hearing aids, or a tissue with no additives such as lotions or aloe. You should also take care to avoid wiping debris and blockage into your hearing aids’ microphone parts from another region of the hearing aids.

How to care for your hearing aids after you clean them

Cleaning your hearing aids is vital for making sure that you hear well, but it’s only effective if you care for your hearing aids after you clean them (and before, too). Your primary concern should be avoiding moisture contact, so remember to remove your hearing aids before you shower or wash your face. You should also remove them when using hair and skin sprays and gels that could potentially come in contact with your ears.

Moisture avoidance doesn’t necessarily end with preventing direct water contact. If you live in a humid environment, sweat often, or walk through a rainstorm without an umbrella or a hat, your hearing aids can easily be exposed to excess moisture. Hearing aid dehumidifiers such as desiccant jars and dry & store units can help you continue to care for your hearing aids after you clean them.

You should also store your hearing aids properly when not in use. Keep them out of reach of children or pets when airing them out overnight after cleaning, as the batteries can be poisonous if swallowed.

When leaving hearing aids unused overnight, remove the batteries and keep the battery compartment open overnight to dry. If your hearing aid uses rechargeable batteries, follow your manufacturer’s instructions for docking and recharging.

We hope you enjoyed reading this series on properly cleaning your hearing aids. If you missed any of the previous posts, you can find them here:

How Do You Clean Hearing Aids?

Step By Step Instructions For Cleaning Hearing Aids

How To Clean Popular Hearing Aid Brands

Learn more about hearing aid care with I Love Hearing

Cleaning your hearing aids is only a small part of ensuring that your devices are working properly and will last for years. At I Love Hearing, our leadership team has in-depth experience working hands-on with all major hearing aid brands, so we can advise you on cleaning and maintenance best practices.

Unlike many hearing aid providers that only sell and repair one brand, we carry and repair nearly every hearing aid brand available in the U.S., and particularly in New York City and Long Island. We offer hearing aid fitting, hearing aid repair, ear wax management, and other services that can help you to keep your hearing aids working like they’re brand new year after year. Our team of licensed audiologists and hearing aid specialists operates from offices located throughout the greater New York metro area: in Manhattan’s Upper West Side and throughout Long Island, including Port Washington, New Hyde Park, East Meadow, and Great Neck.

If you have more questions about hearing aid fitting or hearing aid repair, visit the I Love Hearing FAQ page about hearing aids. And if you still have questions, we’d love to help you:  Contact us to book an appointment and start your hearing aid journey.

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How to clean popular hearing aid brands

Chart of popular hearing aid brands

Each hearing aid model and brand differs. Instructions for cleaning may change from brand to brand. Always consult the owner’s manual of your particular style, brand, and model before cleaning. Below are the recommended hearing aid cleaning instructions from several popular hearing aid brands.

Oticon

Oticon advises that you clean its hearing aids daily using a soft, dry cloth. Be sure your hands are dry before cleaning. Oticon advises against using water or other substances to clean its hearing aids. Additionally, Oticon suggests clearing its hearing aids above a soft surface such as a towel so damage is avoided if you accidentally drop your hearing aids while cleaning. Oticon recommends that its customers clean their hearing aids using a multi-tool.

Starkey

Whereas many hearing loss professionals recommend nighttime cleaning and overnight airing, Starkey suggests cleaning your hearing aids every morning. Starkey advises morning cleanings using a cleaning cloth because earwax dries overnight and can thus be easier to remove in the morning. Starkey also stresses that hearing aid users should take care not to wipe microphone port debris into other openings and vice versa.

Many Starkey hearing aids include a thin tube or earmold. In this case, Starkey says that users should use the cleaning tool provided for these parts regularly so that wax buildup is minimized.

Widex

Widex hearing aids come with a tool that assists with cleaning the sound outlet, vent, and microphone opening. This tool should be used in combination with a soft, dry cloth to clean your hearing aids. Like Starkey, Widex suggests leaving earwax to dry overnight so that you can remove it more easily with your brush.

For ITE hearing aids (Widex uses the abbreviation CIC or “Completely In Canal”) that have a vent tube, Widex offers detailed cleaning instructions. Widex hearing aid users should remove the battery and insert a specialized ball-tip tool into the vent to remove wax buildup from the opening.

Phonak

Phonak emphasizes washing and drying your hands before you clean your hearing aids so that you don’t introduce any moisture or debris. If your hearing aids do come into contact with moisture, Phonak recommends drying them immediately with a soft, dry cloth.

Phonak recommends checking your hearing aids daily for earwax deposits and clear them using the appropriate brush. If you notice a consistent decrease in volume, your earwax filter may be blocked, and though you can replace this filter yourself, it is recommended that you visit a hearing aid specialist such as I Love Hearing for professional assistance and repair.

For its BTE hearing aids, Phonak recommends that users separate the earpiece from the hearing aid prior to cleaning. Only the earpiece can come in contact with water, and this tube should be dried using only an air puffer that your hearing loss professional gives you.

In the last post in this series, we’ll talk about what you should NEVER do when cleaning your hearing aids.

Learn more about hearing aid care with I Love Hearing

Cleaning your hearing aids is only a small part of ensuring that your devices are working properly and will last for years. At I Love Hearing, our leadership team has in-depth experience working hands-on with all major hearing aid brands, so we can advise you on cleaning and maintenance best practices.

Unlike many hearing aid providers that only sell and repair one brand, we carry and repair nearly every hearing aid brand available in the U.S., and particularly in New York City and Long Island. We offer hearing aid fitting, hearing aid repair, ear wax management, and other services that can help you to keep your hearing aids working like they’re brand new year after year. Our team of licensed audiologists and hearing aid specialists operates from offices located throughout the greater New York metro area: in Manhattan’s Upper West Side and throughout Long Island, including Port Washington, New Hyde Park, East Meadow, and Great Neck.

If you have more questions about hearing aid fitting or hearing aid repair, visit the I Love Hearing FAQ page about hearing aids. And if you still have questions, we’d love to help you:  Contact us to book an appointment and start your hearing aid journey.

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How do you clean hearing aids?

Cleaning a hearing aid

Hearing aids have given countless people their hearing back, but they’re not foolproof instruments. They need to be maintained properly to function properly, and regular cleaning is a key part of that process. Thankfully, cleaning hearing aids is a process you can do safely at home. Here’s everything you need to know about cleaning hearing aids.

Why do hearing aids need to be cleaned?

Inevitably, your hearing aids will encounter earwax and moisture from your ear canal, and these substances can interfere with your hearing aids’ functioning. Moisture buildup can be easier to avoid if you remove your hearing aids while showering, washing your face, or using hair sprays, gels, or other products, but earwax buildup is all but guaranteed.

Earwax tends to accumulate in places on your hearing aid that must remain unobstructed, such as from where sounds emerge. Earwax buildup can lead to muffling or distortion. Earwax that sits in these spaces for long periods without being cleaned can permanently damage your hearing aids, so regular cleaning is vital for the health of the device.

How often should I clean my hearing aids?

You may be surprised to learn that your hearing aids benefit greatly from daily cleaning. Cleaning your hearing aids before you go to sleep each night is key to clear hearing. Nighttime cleaning ensures that your hearing aids have the proper time to dry before reinserting them the next morning.

Do you need special tools to clean your hearing aids?

It is recommended that you use tools designed for the purpose of cleaning hearing aids. Hearing aid cleaning kits are available for purchase online. Some hearing aids come with cleaning tools. These specialized hearing aid cleaning tools include a wax pick and a brush to gently clear the hearing aids of wax. Some hearing aid manufacturers also recommend buying a multi-tool for cleaning your hearing aids.

Additionally, the type of tool needed may vary depending on the hearing aid model. For example, if you use BTE (behind the ear) hearing aids, you’ll need a bulb blower to clean your hearing aids. With ITE (in-the-ear) hearing aids, you will want to keep them as far away from moisture as possible.

In our next post on this topic we’ll talk about how to clean these different types of hearing aids.

Learn more about hearing aid care with I Love Hearing

Cleaning your hearing aids is only a small part of ensuring that your devices are working properly and will last for years. At I Love Hearing, our leadership team has in-depth experience working hands-on with all major hearing aid brands, so we can advise you on cleaning and maintenance best practices.

Unlike many hearing aid providers that only sell and repair one brand, we carry and repair nearly every hearing aid brand available in the U.S., and particularly in New York City and Long Island. We offer hearing aid fitting, hearing aid repair, ear wax management, and other services that can help you to keep your hearing aids working like they’re brand new year after year. Our team of licensed audiologists and hearing aid specialists operates from offices located throughout the greater New York metro area: in Manhattan’s Upper West Side and throughout Long Island, including Port Washington, New Hyde Park, East Meadow, and Great Neck.

If you have more questions about hearing aid fitting or hearing aid repair, visit the I Love Hearing FAQ page about hearing aids. And if you still have questions, we’d love to help you:  Contact us to book an appointment and start your hearing aid journey.