Contrary to popular belief, winter is fun! Alright, it can definitely be a bummer if you need to go somewhere. Or if you don’t have the proper gear (or proper infrastructure). But during those cold winter months, you can find lots of enjoyable things to do.
Don’t believe it? Well, here are just a few instances of how cold weather can be enjoyable: you could go sledding or skiing. You could have a good time on a snowmobile! Or you could get a pair of ice skates and spend some time out on the ice. You can enjoy being outside in the winter just as much as the summer, spring, or, fall if you have the proper gear.
But the secret here is using the right gear. You might be thinking: Does my hearing aid count as “the right gear”… and if so, will cold weather impact my hearing aids? Or will cold weather damage my hearing aids?
Most hearing aids are made to be all-weather… to a point
Hearing aids are designed to be used on a daily basis. They’re built so you can wear them to the supermarket, out for a hike, or simply around the house. Which means that hearing aid manufacturers are aware that these devices might take a beating. But just because hearing aids are designed to be worn all of the time doesn’t mean you should do anything extreme with them.
As a result, most hearing aids are made to be somewhat “all-weather”. Most hearing aids can operate quite well between the temperatures of -13 and 158 degrees Fahrenheit. There are some spots that will sometimes get colder than -13 but otherwise, that covers the broad range of temperatures.
You will be able to hear well in most settings and that’s a great thing. So why don’t my hearing aids seem to work as well when it’s very cold? Well, drops in temperature will put strain on your devices, so while they might function, they might not operate optimally.
Guidelines for hearing aids in the winter
You can keep your hearing aids functioning at near maximum efficiency if you take a few measures.
- Try not to get your hearing aids 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 wear hearing aids when it’s snowing or raining”? Yes, you can. Most hearing aids are water resistant but not necessarily waterproof. So while your hearing aid will probably be okay if it gets a little wet, you should dry it as soon as possible.
- Check 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. This means you’ll want to be certain you have a full charge before going out into any inclement weather.
- We can help make sure your hearing aid fits properly: Hearing aids can sometimes become uncomfortable when they’re cold. Minimize any possible discomfort by getting help from us with the fit of your device.
- When you’re not using your hearing aids, store them in a dry and warm spot: This will help prevent moisture from causing issues with your hearing aids. Perhaps you aren’t certain how to remove moisture from your hearing aid. In the majority of cases, you can dry it off and then leave it someplace warm and dry.
- Make use of accessories to keep your hearing aids strapped to your ears: There are all kinds of straps and clips you can use to make sure your hearing aids stay in place. This can be especially significant if you’re involved in strenuous activity, including skiing, skating, or sledding.
- It helps to wear a hat or earmuffs: Wearing earmuffs or a hat will keep both your ears and your hearing aid warm. And your hearing aids will operate at their optimal level if they’re warm. Your next question might be: can I wear ear muffs on top of my hearing aid without impacting my hearing? Well, it depends on the hearing aid, but in most cases, your hearing aids will still continue to work.
Perhaps you’re wondering how to protect your hearing aids when it gets cold. Well, now you’ve got some answers.
What should you do if your hearing aids quit working?
Of course, even in the best possible weather conditions, your hearing aid might occasionally stop working. There are a few practical troubleshooting steps you can take (make sure your device is dry and the batteries are charged, for example). But if those steps aren’t helpful, we should be able to help you determine the cause of the problem and the best way to fix it.
Don’t let cold weather stop you from enjoying life!
There are lots of reasons why you may 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 yummy hot soup. Possibly 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.
That’s particularly true if you take care of your devices, and observe the guidelines outlined above. Call us if you have any questions about how your hearing aids might be impacted by the cold.