Hearing aid whistle is a sound that is given out by the hearing aid in the form of a high- or low-pitched hum, squeal or a chirp. This is often caused because the hearing aid catches the sounds leaked out of the ear canal and the microphone of the hearing aid picks it up and amplifies it. This constant repetition of sound causes the hearing aid whistle.
Here are 7 steps you can take to eliminate or reduce the hearing aid feedback:
1. Push the hearing aid deeper inside the ear: A hearing aid might come loose due to certain sports or even while chewing. Ensuring that the seal inside the ear is tight will increase the distance between the port of sound and the microphone ensuring that you get feedback-free sound amplification.
2. Decrease the volume of high frequencies: The simplest method to reduce feedback is to turn the hearing aid volume down. It prevents the sound from leaking out. You can also try adjusting certain frequencies if your hearing aid has that feature, this will keep the volume up for those who need it but reduce or eliminate the hearing aid whistle.
3. Move away from a reflective surface: Solid surfaces bounce off sounds and create a feedback loop that increases hearing squeal. While it is impossible to avoid sitting near any reflective surface, being aware that it may increase your chances of hearing aid whistle will ensure hassle free hearing.
4. Check for wax inside the ear: Excessive wax build up acts as a reflective barrier which at once prevents sound from entering the ear canal correctly while also bouncing sound back out of the ear increasing feedback. Hence it is important to ensure that your ears are clean and healthy by having them looked at by a certified audiologist.
5. Recalibrate the hearing aid: Calibration takes less than a minute and is sometimes all that is required to improve the quality of sound and prevent unwanted feedback.
6. Upgrade or change the piece that fits into the ear: Switching to another ear piece that fits your ear canal better will ensure reduction of feedback. You can also consider getting a custom mould fitted to your ear to ensure best fit.
7. Change the hearing aid: If all else fails, refer back to your audiologist and get a new set of hearing aids. It is possible that your hearing aid has gone through years of wear and tear or that it got damaged with use. Either way, visit your specialist and get their opinion before making a decision.
We hope this article explains the seven ways you can use to prevent hearing aid feedback or hearing aid whistle. While some of these steps are quite simple – such as pushing the hearing aid in place, others might require you to visit your ENT specialist.