You probably have already heard that water and hearing aids don’t mix. However, there have been many improvements in hearing aid technology in recent years that have made it possible for hearing aids to be water resistant, and in some cases even waterproof.
While it is not recommended that you submerge your hearing aids underwater (unless they are specifically designed to be waterproof), these recent advances have made it easier to protect your hearing aids from water damage. The key is being careful and taking the proper steps to keep your hearing aids safe and dry. That way, you can still enjoy swimming and other summer water activities.
Water-Resistant Hearing Aids vs. Waterproof Hearing Aids
First, it is important to explain the difference between water-resistant and waterproof. They are often used interchangeably, but they each mean something very different. Water-resistant hearing aids won’t get damaged if they get perspiration or rain drops on them. While waterproof hearing aids can withstand more water without causing damage.
Water-Resistant Hearing Aids
Water-resistant hearing aids are more durable than traditional hearing aids when it comes to being able to withstand exposure to a small amount of moisture. Traditionally, most hearing aids could be easily damaged or have the sound distorted if even a few drops of water got in. However, water-resistant hearing aids are built to withstand humidity, sweat, oily skin, and excessive wax. If you have water-resistant hearing aids, you can’t go swimming in them and you would need to protect them or take them off in situations such as a heavy rainstorm, showering, or bathing. Hearing aids all have a protection rating, the higher the number, the more protection your hearing aid has from water and other elements. Knowing what the rating is for your hearing aids will help you better understand them and their capabilities.
Waterproof Hearing Aids
Waterproof hearing aids are not as common as water-resistant hearing aids; and if you have one, then you should follow the directions that accompanied your specific model. If you have any questions about what you can or can’t do with them, then contact your hearing professional to have your specific questions answered or concerns addressed. For most waterproof hearing aids, they can be submerged in up to three feet of water. So, you can swim with them as long as you don’t go too deep. One of the other benefits of waterproof hearing aids is that they keep out 100% of dust particles and some models are also shock resistant as well.
If your hearing aids are not waterproof or even water-resistant, then you can help protect them from moisture and water with some waterproofing accessories. Accessories that can protect your hearing aids include sleeves and cords. You should also consider a dehumidifier that will help keep your hearing aids dry.
Protecting Your Hearing Aids
In addition to protective accessories, there are other things you can do to protect your hearing aids:
- Open them up to air out whenever you aren’t wearing them.
- Dry them off if they get wet and everytime you take them out.
- Keep them clean according to the instructions that came with them.
- Even waterproof or water-resistant hearing aids still cannot be exposed to chemicals, soaps, and hair products. Make sure to take them out and keep them away from chemicals of any kind.