Even if you have glasses (the kind you put on your face, not the kind you drink out of), you still visit your eye doctor annually, right? Because your eyes change as time passes. Nothing in your body is fixed, not your eyes and not, as it happens, your ears either. That’s why, much like your eyes, it’s crucial to keep getting your ears tested even after you’ve invested in a nice pair of hearing aids.
Regrettably, many individuals miss those routine check-ups. Maybe they’ve been too occupied enjoying their lives to get back in to see your physician. Or, it may be that your job has been hectic lately. Or maybe, you’ve just been so satisfied with your hearing aids that you haven’t had a reason to go back in. That’s a good thing, right?
Getting your hearing examined
Let’s take Daphne as an imaginary example. Daphne has been observing some red flags with her hearing for some time now. She keeps increasing the volume on her TV. She has difficulty following conversations at after-work happy hours in loud restaurants. And so, she goes in to get her hearing checked (because she’s intelligent and she takes care of herself).
After getting her hearing tested, Daphne does everything she’s supposed to: she buys hearing aids, which are then precisely fitted and calibrated, and then she goes on with her life.
Issue solved? Well, maybe not completely. Going in for an exam allowed her to recognize her hearing loss early and that’s excellent. But for most individuals with hearing loss, even a minor one, follow-up care becomes even more vital in the long run. Maintaining regular appointments would be a wise plan for Daphne. But Daphne isn’t alone in bypassing check-ups, according to one study, just 33% of senior citizens with hearing aids also scheduled routine hearing services.
Why do you need hearing exams once you have hearing aids?
Alright, remember our glasses metaphor? Just because Daphne has hearing aids now doesn’t mean her hearing will become fixed and stop changing. Her hearing aids will have to be adjusted to account for those changes. Any hearing changes can be discovered early with routine monitoring.
And that isn’t even the only reason why it may be a good idea to keep regular appointments once you have your hearing aids. Some of the most prevailing reasons to ensure you get to your next appointment include:
- Your fit may change: Because your ears are always changing, it’s very possible that the way your hearing aids fit inside of your ears will shift. Making sure your hearing aids continue to fit properly is a significant part of your regular exam.
- Hearing aid calibration: Your hearing changes in slight ways, and while your general hearing may remain consistent, these small changes may require you to get regular hearing examinations. Without this calibration, your hearing aids could slowly become less and less effective.
- Hearing degeneration: Even with a hearing aid, your hearing may continue to deteriorate. If this degeneration is slow enough, you most likely won’t recognize it’s happening without the assistance of a hearing test. Hearing loss can often be slowed by properly adjusting your hearing aids.
Hazards and hurdles
The issue is, Daphne may, in her frustration, stop using her hearing aids entirely because they’re not functioning correctly. Wearing hearing aids helps slow down hearing loss over time. If you stop wearing them, not only can your hearing deteriorate faster, you may not detect it right away.
If you want your hearing aids to continue working at an optimal level, regular exams are going to be your best option in terms of attaining that. Annual hearing assessments or screenings can help you ensure your hearing aids are functioning as they should and that your hearing remains protected.