Contrary to popular belief, winter is fun! Well, if you need to go somewhere, it can definitely be a challenge. Or if you don’t have the proper gear (or proper infrastructure). But during those cold winter months, you can find plenty of fun things to do.
Don’t believe it? Well, here are just a few instances of how cold weather can be fun: you could go sledding or skiing. You could have a good time on a snowmobile! You could head out onto the ice for some ice skating or ice fishing. With the correct gear, winter can be just as much of an outdoor season as spring, summer, or autumn (and the hot chocolate is so much more satisfying when you’ve been outdoors in the cold).
But that’s a significant caveat: you need the correct gear to remain comfortable. You may be thinking: Does my hearing aid count as “the right gear”… and if so, will cold weather affect my hearing aids? Or will cold weather damage my hearing aids?
Most hearing aids are designed to be all-weather… to a point
Hearing aids are designed to be used full-time. They’re constructed so you can wear them to the grocery store, out on a hike, or simply around the house. The manufacturers of these devices are well aware that they need to have a resilient construction. We don’t recommend you do anything extreme with your hearing aids, just keep in mind that they’re designed to accompany you throughout your normal daily tasks.
Consequently, most hearing aids are manufactured to be somewhat “all-weather”. Most hearing aids can operate quite nicely between the temperatures of -13 and 158 degrees Fahrenheit. There are some spots that will sometimes go below -13 but otherwise, that covers the broad range of temperatures.
Which is a good thing! It means you’ll be able to hear in most settings. Now, you might be thinking: if that’s true, why don’t my hearing aids work as well in the winter? Well, drops in temperature will put strain on your devices, so while they may work, they may not work at their best.
Some winter hearing aid advice
Fortunately, there are some things you can do to help make sure your hearing aids continue to function at maximum efficiency (or near enough) even in cold weather.
- We can help make sure your hearing aid fits correctly: Hearing aids can sometimes become uncomfortable when they’re cold. Decrease any possible discomfort by getting help from us with the fit of your device.
- Try not to get your hearing aids wet: When snow melts, it becomes water, so be cautious about exposing your hearing aids to snow. If you’re wondering whether you can use your hearing aids in the snow and rain, the answer is yes. Although most hearing aren’t waterproof, they are usually water resistant. This means your hearing aid can probably get a little wet, but it’s not a great idea to leave it that way longer than you have to.
- Monitor your batteries (and make sure they’re charged): Can hearing aid batteries freeze? Well, not really. But cold weather can kill your batteries faster than warm weather. So before you go out in the cold, make sure your battery is fully charged.
- Keep your hearing aids somewhere warm and dry when you aren’t using them: Your hearing aid will work better and with fewer problems if you keep moisture out of it. You’re probably asking: “How do I eliminate moisture from my hearing aids”? In the majority of situations, you can dry it off and then leave it somewhere dry and warm.
- Utilize accessories to keep your hearing aids secured to your ears: 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 significant if you’re engaged in strenuous activity, such as skiing, skating, or sledding.
- It helps to wear earmuffs or a hat: Wearing a hat or earmuffs will keep both your ears and your hearing aid cozy. And your hearing aids will operate at their maximum level if they’re warm. Your next question might be: can I wear ear muffs over my hearing aid without affecting my hearing? Well, it depends on the hearing aid, but in most cases, your hearing aids will still keep working.
So, if you’re wondering: how do I safeguard my hearing aids in the winter? That’s precisely what we’re going to find out.
What should you do if your hearing aids stop working?
Of course, even in the optimal weather conditions, your hearing aid may occasionally stop working. There are a few standard troubleshooting measures you can take (make sure your device is dry and the batteries are charged, for example). But if those steps don’t help, we should be able to help you identify the cause of the issue and the best way to fix it.
You can still enjoy life even in the cold!
When it’s -10 degrees outside, it’s understandable that you would want to stay inside. Perhaps you’re not a winter person. Maybe you’re going to cook yourself some nice warm soup. Maybe snowmobiles aren’t your jam. The essential thing is that it shouldn’t be your hearing aids that are stopping you from living your best winter life.
If you follow the guidelines above and take good care of your hearing aids, this is especially true. If you have any questions about how cold weather could impact the performance of your hearing aids, talk to us today!