Getting new hearing aids can be very exciting, but it’s important to know that getting used to them can require some dedication and time. That being said, you’ll find that it’s a worthy investment.

Most likely, you lost your hearing gradually over a span of years. During that time, your brain adapted to not hearing the sounds within the range of your hearing loss. This is called auditory deprivation. During this adjustment period, you will be re-awakening those nerve cells and retraining your brain.

You can think of it like having a major surgery. Minutes after a major surgery, the doctor doesn’t expect the patient to jump out of bed and run around the hospital in perfect condition. The patient will have to build up their strength and start with smaller movements. With some surgeries, it can take a day or two to get back to normal and with others, it can take up to a month to fully recover. Our bodies are designed to adapt, and our ears are no different.

Starting Off Softer

At your initial orientation appointment with SoundBenefits, your provider will program your hearing aids at a softer volume level than the prescription of your hearing loss. This is to protect your brain and help you adjust to new sounds gradually. If you were given all your hearing back suddenly, the world would become an overwhelmingly noisy place! Your Audiologist wants to give your brain time to get used to processing all the sounds in your environment.

The First Few Days: So Many New Noises!

In the first few days of wearing your hearing aids, your hearing senses will be heightened due to the new input of sound. Expect to hear environmental noises like the refrigerator running, car noises, or birds outside. These may not necessarily be the sounds that you wanted to hear, but give it time and your brain will learn to tune them out.

For example, have you ever been to a house that has a grandfather clock? Someone who isn’t used to hearing the ticks and chimes of the clock could find it bothersome. But the person who owns the clock most likely doesn’t even hear the ticks and chimes anymore because it’s a steady noise. Their brain has determined it is “unimportant” and learned to tune it out. The same effect will happen after you have worn your hearing aids for a period of time.

Consistent Use is Key to Success

Your Audiologist will recommend that you wear your hearing aids every day during your waking hours. The more you wear the hearing aids, the quicker your brain will adjust to them and the faster your ability to understand speech in complex environments will improve.

In those first couple weeks of wearing your hearing aids, it’s a good idea to write down specific experiences as well as any questions that you might have for your Audiologist. During your follow-up visits, these experiences can help your provider to fine tune the hearing aids closer to your prescription and your lifestyle needs.

Your Hearing Aids are Unique to You

Humans were not made to be identical. We all have our own personalities and sounds that are important to us. Some people want to hear their grandchild’s laughter; others can’t wait to hear their cat purr. There are those who love to be in large groups of people and long to be part of the conversation again. Others love the quiet and look forward to having a one-on-one conversation with their spouse again. This is why having follow-up appointments is so very important. Your Audiologist can program your hearing aids to compensate for your unique hearing loss and give you back the sounds that matter most to you.

Don’t Miss Your Follow-Up Appointments

Some patients require only one to two follow-up appointments within the first couple of months to make sure that their hearing aids are programmed to their lifestyle while others may require more. It’s also normal to have a follow-up appointment once a year or anytime you feel like your hearing has changed.

By communicating your needs and questions to your Audiologist, he or she can help make sure you have the best possible experience with your new hearing aids. As your brain adjusts to them over time, your hearing aids will become a natural and enjoyable part of your everyday life.

Want to see if you are a good candidate for hearing correction? Get your hearing tested by one of our experts, or take a self-guided test now.