Electronic equipment is often sensitive to heat, your hearing aids are no different. That’s why it’s important that you know how to protect your hearing aid against heat.
A hearing aid is a delicate piece of technology and can be damaged easily when not stored, or maintained, correctly. Warm weather doesn’t just bring about an increase in temperature, but there is also humidity. This type of weather, unfortunately, welcomes moisture build-up and possible excessive heat exposure. As a hearing aid user you are already familiar with the risk of damage due to excess moisture, but did you know that extreme heat is just as threatening? Let’s look at how you can protect your hearing aid from multiple heat sources.
Which heat sources should you look out for?
Summer weather is not your hearing aid’s only enemy. Hearing aids consist of a hard plastic casing and delicate electronic parts, if your devices are exposed to excessive heat for an extended period of time the device itself could melt and be deformed. This will likely cause a decreased battery life and poorer battery output, damage to the electronics inside, and also make it difficult to wear. Damage to the technology inside of the casing may result in the device being completely broken, or you may experience difficulties with the volume buttons, program buttons, and microphone. You should avoid exposing your device to direct sunlight, radiators, hairdryers, and exposure to moisture from a warm bath/shower if the device is stored in the bathroom (which is not ideal).
Three ways to protect your hearing aids from heat
Hearing aids can last between 4 to 7 years when you look after them correctly. Over that time you will need to adapt and care for your hearing aids through several changes of the seasons. Summertime can bring about extreme temperatures. In addition to hot weather, you may also find yourself participating in water sports and activities and going to the beach more often. Here are some helpful tips to make sure you maintain your devices correctly.
Be mindful of how – and where – you store your device
Excess heat can be harmful to your hearing aids in more than one way. As mentioned before, when your hearing aid is exposed to heat it could damage the technology within the device. Storing your hearing aids in a cool and dry place is crucial for proper maintenance. Places like your car’s storage compartment, sunrooms, and bathroom cabinets, are not ideal for storage as it is susceptible to heat.
The ideal storage space would be out of direct sunlight in a dehumidifier/“dry aid” kit. The benefit of storing your hearing aid in the dehumidifier/“dry aid” kit is two-fold. It is not only a perfect storage space, but it also removes any excess moisture that gathered throughout the day. It is recommended to store your hearing aid in this container when you go to bed with your hearing aid’s battery door open. A dry battery compartment means your batteries will be less likely to become corroded, therefore there will be less of a need to have your hearing aid repaired/serviced.
Sweat and humidity, the silent culprits
Warm weather may lead to increased perspiration. Our bodies naturally cool us off with sweat when we’re exposed to heat. Our ears are no exception to sweating and having hearing aids in our ears may cause them ears to perspire. What’s more, sweat may accumulate in and around your device. Excess humidity and exposure to water during summer rain can also cause moisture build-up. Most hearing aid providers recommend not swimming with your hearing aid on, especially if it is not waterproof, as direct contact with water may cause irreparable damage to your hearing aids.
Avoid chemical damage
Throughout the year skin can be exposed to harmful sun rays that put you at risk for burns and possibly skin cancer, which is why you use sunscreen. But, did you know that sunscreen can clog your hearing aid’s microphone and possibly filter through the device? You will need to remove your hearing aid before you apply sunscreen and also clean your hands of any leftover lotion before you handle your hearing aids again.
Treat your hearing aids as you would your phone, keep it safe, dry, and out of the heat. Have fun and make memories, but make sure you keep your hearing aids out of harm’s way by keeping these tips top of mind.