You will still see your eye doctor yearly even if you already use eyeglasses. Because your eyes change as time passes. Similar to the rest of your body, your eyes aren’t static and neither are your ears. That’s why, even after you’ve invested in hearing aids, it’s essential to continue to have your ears examined much like you would with your eyes.
Many people, regrettably, neglect those yearly appointments. Perhaps a trip to their doctor is taking a back seat to enjoying life. Or, it could be that your job has been difficult lately. Or perhaps, you’ve just been so satisfied with your hearing aids that you haven’t felt the need to go back in. That should be a good thing, right?
Scheduling a hearing exam
Let’s use Daphne as our imaginary stand-in. Daphne has been observing some red flags associated with her hearing for a while now. She keeps turning the TV up. She has problems understanding conversations at after-work happy hours in loud restaurants. And so, she goes to get her hearing checked (because she’s smart and she takes care of herself).
Daphne makes certain to follow all of the instructions to manage her hearing impairment: she gets fitted for new hearing aids and has them correctly calibrated, and then gets back to her normal routine.
Problem solved? Well, maybe not entirely. It’s fantastic that Daphne went in for a hearing exam and discovered her hearing problems early. But, in the long run, follow-up care becomes even more important for individuals with even a small amount of hearing loss. Daphne would be doing herself a favor by maintaining regular appointments. But Daphne’s not alone in avoiding check-ups, according to one study, only 33% of seniors using hearing aids also scheduled regular hearing services.
Why do you need check-ups once you get hearing aids?
Okay, remember our glasses metaphor? Daphne’s hearing won’t become fixed and stop changing just because she has hearing aids. It’s essential to fine-tune the hearing aids to counter those changes. Any hearing changes can be detected early with routine monitoring.
And that isn’t even the only reason why it might be a smart idea to keep routine appointments once you have your hearing aids. Some of the most common reasons to make sure you get to your next check-up include:
- Your fit may change: Because your hearing is always changing, it’s quite possible that how your hearing aids fit around and in your ears will change. Making certain your hearing aids continue to fit well is a big part of your regular exam.
- Hearing aid calibration: Your hearing changes in small ways, and while your general hearing may remain consistent, these small changes may require you to get regular hearing assessments. Your hearing aid may become less and less effective if you avoid this calibration.
- Hearing deterioration: Your hearing may continue to deteriorate even if you use hearing aids. If this degeneration is slow enough, you most likely won’t notice it’s happening without the help of a hearing exam. Hearing decline can often be slowed by properly adjusting your hearing aids.
Hazards and hurdles
The issue is, Daphne may, in her frustration, quit using her hearing aids entirely because they’re not functioning properly. Wearing hearing aids helps slow down hearing loss over time. Your hearing will deteriorate faster if you quit using your hearing aids and you most likely won’t even notice it.
When it comes to achieving optimal performance of your hearing aids, and optimal hearing, routine hearing exams are vital. Protect your hearing and ensure your hearing aids are effectively working by getting regular screenings.