In contrast to popular belief, winter is fun! Okay, it can definitely be a bummer if you need to go somewhere. Or if you don’t have the correct gear (or proper infrastructure). But there are plenty of fun things to do in those chillier winter months.
Still not convinced? Skiing and sledding aren’t the only fun things you can do in the winter. You could have some fun on a snowmobile! You could head out onto the ice for some ice skating or ice fishing. You can enjoy being outdoors in the winter just as much as the summer, spring, or, fall if you have the correct gear.
But that’s an important caveat: you need the right gear to remain comfortable. You might be thinking: Does my hearing aid count as “the right gear”… and if so, will cold air affect my hearing aids? Can the cold damage my hearing aids?
Up to a point, most hearing aids will be fine in any weather
Hearing aids are made to be used full-time. They’re built so you can wear them to the supermarket, out for a hike, or simply around the house. The makers of these devices understand that they need to have a robust construction. But just because hearing aids are meant to be worn all of the time doesn’t mean you should do anything extreme with them.
Consequently, most hearing aids are manufactured to be somewhat “all-weather”. Most hearing aids can function quite nicely between the temperatures of -13 and 158 degrees Fahrenheit. That covers the broad spectrum of temperature possibilities (even though there are some places, especially up north, that will occasionally get colder than -13 degrees).
You will be capable of hearing well in most environments and that’s a wonderful thing. Now, you might be thinking: if that’s true, why don’t my hearing aids function as well in the winter? Well, drops in temperature will put strain on your devices, so while they might function, they may not operate at their best.
Tips for hearing aids in the winter
You can keep your hearing aids functioning at close to maximum efficiency if you take a few measures.
- Be certain you have freshly charged batteries: Hearing aid batteries don’t necessarily freeze but they will die quicker in the cold. So before you go out in the cold, make sure your battery is fully charged.
- It helps to wear earmuffs or a hat: Not only will this keep your ears warm, it’ll keep your hearing aids warm, too! And your hearing aids will work at their optimal level if they’re warm. Your next question might be: can I wear ear muffs over my hearing aid without affecting my hearing? Most hearing aids will still work just fine with earmuffs on.
- Keep your hearing aids somewhere warm and dry when you aren’t using them: Your hearing aid will function better and with fewer problems if you keep moisture out of it. Maybe you aren’t sure how to eliminate moisture from your hearing aid. Usually, you can wipe it down and let it air dry in a warm spot.
- Keep your hearing aids secured in your ear by using accessories.: In order to make sure your hearing aids stay securely in place in your ears you can make use of one of many available clips or straps. This can be particularly important if you’re involved in strenuous activity, such as skiing, skating, or sledding.
- Speak with us about how your hearing aids are fitting: At times, when they get really cold, hearing aids can be uncomfortable. Decrease any possible discomfort by getting help from us with the fit of your device.
- Try not to let your hearing aid wet: Be cautious not to get snow on your hearing aid because when snow melts, things get wet. If you’re going to ask, “Well, can I use hearing aids when it’s raining or snowing”? Yes, you can. Although most hearing aren’t waterproof, they are typically water resistant. So while your hearing aid will most likely be okay if it gets a little wet, you should dry it as soon as you can.
Perhaps you’re wondering how to safeguard your hearing aids when it gets cold. That’s precisely what we’re going to find out.
If your hearing aid stops working, what should you do?
Sometimes, unfortunately, your hearing aid will stop working even when the weather is warm and dry. You can take a few basic steps to troubleshoot your device (for instance, ensure the batteries are charged and that your devices are good and dry). But if those steps aren’t helpful, we should be able to help you diagnose the cause of the problem and the best way to fix it.
Don’t let cold weather stop you from enjoying life!
There are plenty of reasons why you might want to stay inside when it’s -10 degrees outside. Perhaps you don’t like the cold. Maybe you’re going to cook yourself some nice warm soup. Possibly snowmobiles aren’t your jam. What’s important here is not to let issues with your hearing aid diminish your quality of life, even when it’s winter.
If you follow the guidelines above and take good care of your hearing aids, this is particularly true. If you have any questions about how cold weather could effect the performance of your hearing aids, talk to us today!