If you have never worn a hearing aid before, it can be difficult to contemplate how you will make the adjustment. Most of us know how hearing aids work in principle but in practice. When they are set to become a part of our lives, it tends to be more confused.

If you are due to start wearing a hearing aid soon, then check the answers to these common hearing aid FAQs. These should help to calm your nerves and effectively prepare you for this new step in your life.

Question: Can I wear my hearing aid in the shower or bath?

Answer: No.

Hearing aids are incredibly sensitive to moisture, so they must be removed before every shower, bath, or entrance into a swimming pool. Or any other time you’re liable to encounter water, for that matter. Even the slightest exposure to moisture could be enough to damage your hearing aids. Always ensure that you remove your hearing aid before encountering moisture and, ideally, leave them in a moisture-proof box. This will ensure they don’t become damaged by steam or stray droplets.

Question: Do hearing aids have any other beneficial functions besides improving hearing?

Answer: Yes.

As the name may suggest, the primary function of a hearing aid is to improve the quality of your hearing. However, if you have other ear-related issues, then a hearing aid can help to improve these too. Most notable in this category is tinnitus. If you suffer from this persistent, irritating issue, inform your audiologist, as there are numerous tinnitus-dampening options that can be included with standard hearing aids.

Question: What do I do if my hearing aid isn’t working?

Answer: Speak to your audiologist.

If your hearing aid stops functioning as it should, then it’s tempting to see if you can fix the problem yourself. However, aside from a basic clean and inspection, this isn’t a great idea. Hearing aids are complex devices, and a qualified professional needs to be the one in charge of ascertaining the issue. Give your hearing aid a once over to ensure there’s no obvious problems, then take it to your audiologist for a full, expert assessment.

Question: Can I sleep in my hearing aids?

Answer: Yes, technically— but you shouldn’t.

You can sleep in your hearing aids, but you really shouldn’t. First and foremost, if you’re not going to be awake to hear the amplified sound, the power to your hearing aids is being wasted. Secondly, there’s every chance your hearing aid will work loose in the night and fall into the sheets. Here, it could easily become damaged beyond the point of repair, meaning that you’ll have to find the funds to replace it. Neither of these issues is ideal, so avoid sleeping in your hearing aids at all costs— the risks far outweigh the benefits.

Now you have a firmer idea as to the realities of living with a hearing aid, you should be able to accept these devices into your life with ease. Good luck!