Hearing aids are essentially mini computers that evaluate complex environments, process sound and apply amplification to account for an individual’s hearing loss. The microchip inside of the hearing aid is susceptible to environmental factors such as moisture just as any other computer or electronic device would be.
While some hearing aid manufactures aim to take preventative measures against moisture, they can’t prevent all moisture from getting into the devices. Many devices now have special seals around open ports and a coating on the entire device to help prevent moisture from entering the hearing aid. Hearing devices need certain ports open so sound can enter into the hearing aid and also so the sound can leave the device to travel into the individual’s ear. Once moisture does enter into the device, it will begin to corrode the components inside. It is usually a slow process, but eventually components of the hearing aids will begin to malfunction.
The best way to help prevent excessive moisture from corroding the components in the hearing aids is to help draw out the moisture from the device. For example, the devices can be placed inside of a hearing aid dryer. Hearing aid dryers have several forms. There are dryers with desiccant beads, dry bricks and UV lights. Each kind is effective to a different degree. The desiccant beads can be recharged in the microwave as they begin to collect the moisture but the beads are not as effective as the dry bricks or the UV light. The dry bricks need to be replaced every few months, but they can draw out more moisture than the beads. The UV light is the most effective and also least expensive over time. The UV light will last for a very long time so there is no need to purchase replacement parts or to recharge the components. When the hearing aids are consistently placed in a dryer, the dryer draws out the moisture from the components and will keep the devices functioning properly for many years. For hearing aids with a rechargeable battery, it is recommended to put the hearing aids in a hearing aid dryer for an hour each morning after they have charged all night.
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