Hearing Blog

Stop Hearing Aid Feedback
Joshua Luekenga September 16, 2019

Stop Hearing Aid Feedback

Hearing loss already comes with a number of problems that we have to deal with on a daily basis. We may invest in a pair of hearing aids to help us hear better, but those come their own set of problems as well. One of the most common problems reported by those who wear hearing aids is that of feedback.

Feedback refers to the sharp whistling noise that comes from the hearing aids from time to time. It often sounds the way a microphone could if you pointed it directly towards the speakers or your mouth. This sound can be annoying and even painful at times since it happens directly inside the ear canal. Thankfully, there are some effective ways in which you can eliminate feedback from your hearing aids.

The most common reason for feedback is poorly fitted hearing aids. This means that your hearing aids might be too loose, which may enable air to enter and keep getting magnified by the hearing aids. Alternatively, your hearing aids may not be positioned properly within the ear which causes sounds to continue reverberating.

If you got your hearing aids a long time ago, it could be that the earmold of your hearing aids has dislodged from its original location due to shrinkage, hardening, or possible damage. You can try to replace the plastic tubing or the earmold if this is the case, and you will find that the whistling noise will diminish.

Our ears produce plenty of earwax, whether we want them to or not. This excessive earwax can often be the culprit behind hearing aid feedback. Even though we may think of earwax as dirty and foul due to its sticky texture, it actually helps keep our ears clean and safe from foreign particles. Most of the times, our ears practically clean themselves out by having the earwax slowly travel out of the ear each time we chew or move our jaws. The problem occurs when our ears produce too much earwax that it cannot get rid of effectively.

The problem with too much earwax on hearing aids is that it traps sound and does not allow it to escape, which results in feedback. The sound which remains trapped repeats itself through the microphone over and over, which is what we hear as feedback. You can clean out your ears by running your hot shower stream into the ears when you bathe. This can help eject the earwax, which you can then wipe away with a clean, dry towel. Alternatively, you can have your ears cleaned professionally by a medical doctor. Once your ears are clean, you will find that you no longer face earwax-related issues when it comes to hearing aid feedback.

We often overlook the obvious solution sometimes. If we get feedback, it could very well mean that your microphone has some form of obstruction that is preventing it from working properly. Anything that covers the microphone can result in feedback. You can notice this whenever you cover your ears with a scarf or earmuff, or even when someone gives you a bear hug that covers your ears. In these cases, all you have to do is remove the obstruction and you will find that the feedback immediately disappears.

Sometimes, no matter what remedies we try, we still continue to get feedback. This could mean that your hearing aid might be damaged and may need to be repaired or replaced. If no home remedy eliminates feedback, take your hearing aids to your audiologist to have them check whether they need to be replaced.

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