Resources for New HA Wearers

Hi,

I got my first HA’s 6 days ago.

I was really excited to get them.

I don’t like them. My ears and head hurt when I wear them. My ears itch. I don’t know if I am discerning more words than I was before. I had a hard time at work knowing if they were working or not.

I will likely check back in with my audiologist soon.

Does anyone have any resources for a newby?

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Definitely difficult to discern a difference if all there is, is pain when you wear them. Check in with your audiologist ASAP and see if you can get some smaller fittings. Once the better sized fittings are in place, hopefully the itching goes away. One way to be able to tell if they are working, rub your hands together beside one ear and then the other, there should be a discernible difference in volume with the aids vs without.

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It takes time to get use to wearing hearing aids for a few as little as a month for me almost 6 months. I came to understand what patience really means. You have to get a great one on one relationship with your Audi. Keep notes on what you feel, hear and what you like and dislike. Be very up front with your Audi. You have to hold yourself and your Audi’s feet to the fire to make the aids work for you correctly.

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When I first got my HAs I had about 7 follow up weekly adjustments to the volume/frequencies etc to get it just right. You’ll notice you’ll either hear stuff or you won’t. On the physical side, it took me about two weeks to notice that I could not feel the HAs at all.

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I got mine mid-July and like you I was anticipating an improvement in life. As I read through the site I realize how fortunate I am in not needing adjustments. What I want to say is some days I am certain that I am allergic to the plastic tubes and other days I almost forget to take them out before I go to bed.

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The adjustments may be needed by you and you do not really know or understand just what can be adjusted to make your hearing life and over all life better.
I have been wearing aids for over fifteen years and the aids I got back in December have been adjusted for me about monthly from December until the end of July and that is when we finally got them to the point they are now. I can put them in my ears in the morning and know that I do not have to change programs or in most cases not change volume settings all day. It is almost like I have gotten my hearing back.

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Thanks, everyone. I knew it wouldn’t be magic, like glasses/contacts were (before I needed progressive lenses lol), but I didn’t anticipate pain. I thought I would be able to put them in and wear them, I didn’t know that there were settings.

I am going to try them again today, and see what specific questions I have for my Audi, aside from the pain. I tend to get migraines, so it’s hard to know which is the source of the pain.

Did you get custom fitted mold/domes to go in ear or “off-the-shelf” fittings to go into ear? Maybe pain is caused by wrong size. Custom fitted does add about $100 to the total cost.
I never have understood why people will pay thou$ands for HA and the audi doesn’t convince them to spend another $100. Maybe I’m missing something.

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She tried 2 different sizes, but that was about it. I assume that was not a custom fitting?

I trialed aids by oticon and phonak.
I found the shape of the oticon ear domes to be uncomfortable, itchy, and at on point with domes that were too large downright painful. I couldn’t keep them in more than an hour or two before I had to remove for a short break.

I want to say the phonak domes that were too big were also similar. Can’t remember for sure now all the different combinations I tried…it wasn’t even that many

Anyway There is hope!
I forget I have these phonak’s in my ears…wear them all day…even past bedtime when I fall alsleep in my lazy chair!
Once in a while I’ll get a little itchy…and I take that as a hint for better hygiene. Just this morning a few minutes with debrox drops, a quick rinse, problem solved! I don’t even think it was wax buildup, just a little clean-up.
Have a little patience and try different domes…

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Hearing aids require time to adjust but you should not be feeling your ears and head, for goodness sake, hurt. You’re going to have to try different domes for starters. In my case the first aids I trialed had domes that were a pretty good fit, so I noticed them at first but by no means were they painful. Eventually I got to the point where I don’t notice them most of the time.

Below is a link to Dr Cliff, well known here as a YouTube hearing aid guru (and practicing audiologist). That video is specifically about adjusting to hearing aids. You’ll find he has tons of videos, many of them reviews about specific brands, that may answer some other questions.

One thing he emphasizes is that the quality of the audiologist is the most important thing. I don’t know what your situation is but if you can’t get what you need from your present one, you may have to shop around.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KHXY7vHIwPM&t=3s

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What hearing aid brand and model do you have?

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agree with others who say it takes time

at first i thought “how can i go through life with these things stuck in my ears”, i was constantly aware if them

now, i put them on first thing in the morning and take them off last thing at night and i don’t even think about them most of the time

give it some time and balance the discomfort with the … hopefully … improvement in your ability to hear the world around you

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I subscribe to Consumer Reports and they provide some tips on how to deal with new hearing aids. Not sure if you have to be a subscriber to get to this page or not, but here is the link:

How to Get Used to Hearing Aids - Consumer Reports

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I got my first hearing aids this past January. In the beginning it was a love/hate relationship. Good to hear things I hadn’t heard in a long while, but everything just seems so loud. Then getting used to the way things felt with the ITC hearing aids. I set a goal to wear them so many hours per day the first week and then added more and more. I very often felt like just ripping them out of my ears, but I forced myself not to do that. I had a trial period and I wanted to be sure I would be able to live with them long term. Not wearing them wasn’t going to do me any good to be able to evaluate them fairly. Sometimes they still feel itchy and I will take them out and wipe them off and put them back in. It was definitely overwhelming in the beginning and even now when I get a little adjustement to bump me up to another hearing level. It takes patience and an audiologist who will listen and work with you.

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I have Oticon Minorite hearing aids

Thanks everyone, I am going to try them again today.

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When I first got HAs, I wore them for about three, maybe 4 hours. The sound was overwhelming after years of not hearing properly. I think it was a month or so before I wore them for an entire day.

This is my second set of Phonak Receiver in the ear. With this second set, the molds had to be remade at least 4 maybe 5 times before my audiologist took the old pair I had and had the molds remade to that exact specification. The original was remade at least 3 times. That mold material they use - like play doh consistency - boy did that not work for me at all.

Definitely have a conversation with your audi about your pain - and try to be as specific as possible - “this part of my ear hurts”, “I have trouble hearing in the supermarket” etc.

Be patient and know that you are not alone. :smiley:

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They should not hurt. I have to reach up to my ear to see if mine are in. I have no feeling of them being in. But, at first it felt like a grapefruit in my ear.

Your pro may not have them turned up to “target”. Ask them what the plan is to get to target.

After they are turned up to target and are physically comfortable, it takes some time for your brain to adjust. Everything may sound too loud at first but your brain will learn to filter out things you don’t really want to hear.

Its not just newbies, I’ve just gone from molds to power domes and have to adjust all over again. Audi says the domes are closer to my drums. I hear better but not used to the feeling, yet.

when you first get new hearing aids, they have them adjusted really low… they will turn the volume up over time, to give you time to get used to them.

pain might be brought on by wrong sized domes. I know I had pain in one ear and they changed the dome to a slightly smaller dome and now all is good.

you wont need to wait for the next audi appt. give them a call and they should get you in asap. if not, time to find a different audiologist

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