You will still visit your eye doctor annually even if you already wear eyeglasses. Because your eyes change as time passes. Nothing in your body is static, not your eyes and not, as it happens, your ears either. That’s why, much like your eyes, it’s essential to keep getting your ears checked even after you’ve invested in a nice pair of hearing aids.
Regrettably, many individuals miss those routine check-ups. Perhaps they’ve been too occupied enjoying their lives to get back in to see the doctor. Or, it could be that your job has been hectic lately. Or perhaps you’ve just decided not to go back in because you’re so satisfied with your hearing aids. It seems like that would be good, right?
Scheduling a hearing exam
Let’s take Daphne as an imaginary example. For quite a while, Daphne has detected some warning signs with her hearing. Her TV volume is getting louder and louder. When she goes out after work to a noisy restaurant, she has trouble following conversations. And because she likes to take care of herself, and she’s smart, she schedules a hearing exam.
Daphne makes sure to follow all of the steps to manage her hearing impairment: she purchases hearing aids, which are then precisely fitted and calibrated, and then she goes on with her life.
Issue solved? Well, not quite. It’s fantastic that Daphne went in for a hearing screening and discovered her hearing issues early. But, in the long run, follow-up care becomes even more important for people with even minor hearing loss. Keeping up on regular appointments would be a smart idea for Daphne. However, one study found that only about 33% of senior citizens with hearing aids get routine check-ups so Daphne isn’t by herself.
If you already use hearing aids, why do you need check-ups?
Okay, remember our glasses metaphor? Just because Daphne uses hearing aids now doesn’t mean her hearing will become fixed and stop changing. Her hearing aids will have to be adjusted to account for those changes. Periodic testing helps keep track of any changes in hearing and catch issues early.
And there are other reasons for getting routine hearing exams after you get hearing aids. Here are a few of the most significant reasons:
- Hearing deterioration: Your hearing may continue to deteriorate even if you have hearing aids. If this deterioration is slow enough, you probably won’t notice it’s happening without the aid of a hearing exam. Hearing loss can frequently be slowed by properly fine-tuning your hearing aids.
- Hearing aid calibration: While your overall hearing health may continue to be stable, small changes in your hearing may produce the need for yearly calibration of your hearing aid. Without this calibration, your hearing aids could slowly become less and less useful.
- Your fit may change: It’s possible that there will be a shift in how your hearing aids fit as your ears are always changing. Regular check-ups can help ensure that your hearing aids keep fitting the way they’re designed to.
Hazards and hurdles
The main concern here is that sooner or later, the hearing aids Daphne is wearing will quit working the way they’re meant to, so she’ll get frustrated with them and stop wearing them entirely. Over time, hearing loss can be slowed by using hearing aids. If you quit using them, not only can your hearing diminish faster, you might not notice it right away.
If you want your hearing aids to keep working at an optimal level, routine check-ups are going to be your best bet in terms of achieving that. Protect your hearing and make sure your hearing aids are effectively working by having routine screenings.