Maintenance and Cleaning
It is very important that the hearing aid is regularly cleaned. If this is not done the aid may malfunction, have reduced output or stop working. The following information describes the best method of cleaning:
- Disconnect the hearing aid and the ear piece (fig2)
- Clean the hearing aid (electronic part) with a dry tissue ensuring not to get it wet.
- It is very important to clean the earpiece in warm soapy water. For patients prone to infections a sterilising solution can be used. The earmould can be left to soak for around 30 minutes (fig3)
- Remove the earpiece from the solution and rinse with clean water (fig4).
- It is very important to dry the tube through by either blowing through the tube or shaking the earpiece (fig5). Failure to dry the tubing will give the effect that the hearing aid is not working; this is due to the sound path been blocked. You can also purchase an “Earmould Puffer” from Castle Hill Hospital which can be used for drying the tubing.
- Once this has been done connect the earpiece back to the hearing aid (fig6).
Note: The right hearing aid has a red marker and the left hearing aid has a blue marker. The markers are located in the battery drawer.
All NHS hearing aids are able to have the Telecoil (loop/T) system set up as an additional programme. It may not be set up on all hearing aids. The Telecoil system works by the input signal been converted to an electro magnetic signal which is then picked up by the Telecoil receiver inside the hearing aid.
The Telecoil system will only work if a loop system is installed. Telecoil systems are generally installed in: – Banks, Building Societies, Post Offices, Theatres, Churches and many more public buildings, they are normally identified by the Telecoil logo. Telecoil systems can also be installed into the patient’s home for use with the television; this can be done by the patient’s local sensory team.
To access the Telecoil programme on the hearing aid, please first identify the model of hearing aid:
- Analogue Hearing Aids – Switch the hearing aid to the “T” position.
- Oticon Spirit 2 – Switch the hearing aid to the “T” position.
- Oticon Spirit 2 Power, 3 Direct, 3 Direct with Volume Control, Spirit 3 Power – Press the button located on the back of the hearing aid, you will then hear 2 beeps, this is to inform you that you are now on the Telecoil system, press the button again and you will be back to the general microphone program.
- Oticon Spirit 3 Super Power – Refer to your user manual to see which program, either 1,2 or 3 is set to the Telecoil system, then switch the aid to this position.
- Oticon Zest, Zest Power and Zest Communicate – Press the button located on the back of the hearing aid, you will then hear 2 beeps, this is to inform you that you are now on the Telecoil system, press the button again and you will be back to the general microphone program.
- Phonak Aids – Please refer to the user manual
Using the Telephone
When using the telephone there should be no need to remove the hearing aid. The biggest help when using the telephone is to ensure correct positioning of the hand piece of the telephone, rather that hold the speaker to your ear canal, press the speaker against the actual hearing aid, therefore the speaker should by around an inch higher then it naturally held. This is due to the fact that you are no longer hearing directly from your ear canal as your ear canal is blocked with the earpiece. You are actually hearing through the little microphones inside the hearing aid this signal is then passed through the earpiece into your ear canal.
If the hearing aid appears not to be working try the following:
- Check the hearing aid is not switched to the “T” switch or the program switch has not been pressed by mistake.
- If the hearing aid has a volume wheel check that the hearing aid wheel has not been turned right down, if it has then correct the volume.
- Check that the battery is the right way round.
- Try putting in a new battery.
- Check that the earpiece is not blocked with earwax.
- Check that the tubing is not split or twisted.
- Check whether or not there are droplets of condensation in the tubing, if so disconnect the tubing from the hearing aid and blow through the tubing.
If you have checked these things and the hearing aid is still not working please contact the Audiology Department for a repair appointment.
If the hearing aid is whistling when you have it in, then one of the following are most likely to be the reason: –
- You may have a build of earwax; your Audiologist or GP can check this.
- The earpiece is not fitted correctly; if you are having problems fitting your earpiece please contact the Audiology Department for a review appointment.
- The tubing may be split, or has come out of position.
- The hearing aid may have developed an internal whistle.
Please contact the Audiology Department for a repair appointment if the whistling persists.