Living in Hawaii, it’s essential to know how to care for your hearing aids in the heat and humidity! There are several aspects that are important to consider when wearing your hearing devices in a hot climate.
How summer, heat and moisture can affect hearing instruments
Moisture plus humidity can equal a very bad combination for hearing aids. Moisture tends to build up over time and can cause condensation inside the hearing device itself. Too much condensation within hearing aids can result in corroded components, dead batteries or electronic failures.
Other side effects of moisture build-up in hearing devices include an increased pitch or change in the quality of sound. This is generally caused by the condensation actually making the diameter of the hearing instrument itself smaller, resulting in these changes.
Thankfully, moisture and condensation are not an unavoidable consequence of living in a hot climate. There are many easy, simple tips that you can adopt to ensure that you, or you loved ones, continue to have hearing devices that are in tip-top shape!
Ask your audiologist about your hearing aids and water resistance
Depending on your lifestyle, some form of water resistance may be very important to you. If that’s the case, you should ask a member of our team about nano-coating. Nano-coating was originally designed for the military, but has become pretty common in daily life over the years. In fact, approximately 60% of the world’s hearing aids today are fitted with this coating.
So, what is it? It’s essentially a liquid repellent. By lowering an object’s surface energy, it allows liquid to bind to itself, rather than the surface it has just hit. That means that when liquid hits a surface, it beads and rolls off, rather than spreading across the surface itself. This, in turn, helps to protect internal mechanisms and prevent corrosion damage. Pretty cool!
Nevertheless, you should ask for some specifics. Some manufacturers only apply nano-coating to certain elements of the hearing device, whereas other models will provide higher levels of protection.
Accessories that can help prevent moisture damage
Some people carry small dogs as accessories, others carry portable dehumidifiers. It’s all about what works for you!
Dehumidifiers are actually more than just accessories – they are pretty essential. They work to suck the moisture from hearing devices and allow the moisture to evaporate over time.
By using a dehumidifier each night, after exercise, or just after a sweaty day, you can take a daily step to prevent moisture build-up in your hearing aids. Dehumidifiers are available in a variety of shapes and sizes, and can range in price and quality. If you’re often on the move, you may wish to pick up a portable dehumidifier as well.
Other useful accessories for an active or sweaty lifestyle include sweatbands (there are some especially made for hearing aids!) and hearing aid neoprene covers. If you’d like some more helpful tips on how to handle the heat, click here.
If you live a particularly active lifestyle, be sure to tell us about these activities to ensure that you are getting the best style of hearing aids to meet your needs.
What to do if your hearing aids get wet
Whether you realize there’s been a build-up of moisture over time, or you accidentally jump into the ocean still wearing your hearing aids, hearing devices can definitely get wet! It happens. Thankfully, you can take action to combat it. Follow these steps to try and reduce the impacts of moisture exposure.
- Immediately turn off your hearing devices.
- Remove the battery.
- You can gently dry your hearing aids using a towel or, if you have a special hearing aid dryer, feel free to use it. It is not advisable to use a regular hair dryer, as the high heat of the hair dryer can damage the hearing aids further. If you really can’t help yourself, make sure it’s on the coolest setting!
- Place your hearing aids in a dehumidifier. By putting your hearing devices in a dehumidifier, it can work its magic by evaporating the moisture and hopefully restoring your hearing aids to their usual state.
- You should keep the hearing instruments in the dehumidifier for at least a few hours, but the longer the better. Even if they look dry after an hour, keep them in for longer, as the internal mechanisms need to dry out too.
- If you don’t have a dehumidifier to hand, you can always place your hearing aids in a Ziploc bag with uncooked rice in it. It might sound strange, but it can work wonders!
- If you’ve gone through each of these steps and still no luck, please contact a member of our team to schedule an appointment and we’ll work with you to find a solution!
If you want to talk to us about your lifestyle or your hearing aid-related needs, don’t hesitate! We are here to help.
Family Hearing Aid Hearing Center of Hawaii
You don’t have to live with untreated hearing loss. Contact us at one of our seven offices today for a consultation.