Hearing aids require occasional upkeep to stay in working order. Some of the necessary accessories needed to care for and maintain your devices may be provided by your hearing care provider as part of your hearing aids purchase Others you may need to purchase separately, and are purely optional, like stickers or even jewelry.
In addition, if you have hearing loss, you might also be interested in purchasing an assistive listening device (ALD) to boost your hearing experience. ALDs can make it easier to talk on phone, watch TV, attend public events and participate in work meetings.
Hearing aid portable charger
If you have rechargeable hearing aids, your hearing aids likely came with a charger to dock your hearing aids at night. But you may want to invest in a second charger—for travel or backup. Portable chargers do not require a plug, making them a good option for activities like camping.
Batteries for non-rechargeable hearing aids
If your hearing aids have replaceable batteries and are not rechargeable, you're going to need an ongoing supply of disposable "button" batteries.
Hearing aid batteries are available in four different sizes. From smallest to largest, these are: 10, 312, 13 and 675. Your hearing aids will run on one of these specific types of batteries, and your hearing care provider will usually provide a small number of batteries to get you started.
Always carry spare batteries with you so you’re prepared for your day and can keep your hearing aids running without interruption.
But, considering how tiny button batteries are, how can you carry around a spare pair you won't lose? Consider a battery caddy, which comes on a keychain for on-the-go battery replacements.
Hearing aid carrying case
When you get new hearing aids, they may also come with a case for safe keeping when you are not charging them (such as during a quick shower). Inside may also be helpful tools like a wax pick and soft cloth for quick cleaning.
However, the case may not be waterproof or very durable. If you're a fan of swimming or other outdoor activities, you are wise to invest in a waterproof, shatterproof carrying case, such as the AidKeeper.
Dryer or dehumidifier
If you perspire heavily, live in a humid climate or enjoy lots of outdoor activity that might expose your hearing aids to damaging moisture, a dehumidifier can be a big help.
Basic dehumidifiers use a desiccant capsule to draw out moisture overnight. The desiccant will last a long time with regular reactivation. Some desiccants are contained in a soft pouch that can be reactivated in the microwave oven for about 1 minute. Others are housed in a metal tin that can be placed in an oven heated to 325° for about 30 minutes.
There are also electronic dryers you can buy, which fully dehydrate your hearing aids with heat instead of dessicants. This is a good option if you do not want to frequently buy dessicant capsules.
Hearing aid clips and cords
Losing a hearing aid is a scary, expensive event! A hearing aid retention clip attached to a cord or tether makes this less likely. Made especially for hearing aids cochlear implants, these handy tools are your fail-safe if your devices fall off you. These are especially useful for kids, but useful for anyone prone to losing their aids (or have pets prone to running off with them!)
Hearing aid cuffs and covers
Hearing aid covers (like little socks for your hearing aids) protect them from sweat, dirt, moisture and wind. These are a good buy if you are an active person frequently outdoors or exercising. Wear glasses or a face mask? The simple act of removing either can inadvertently knock your hearing aids out. As a remedy, hearing aid accessory company Ear Gear makes a pair of hearing aid sleeves with tiny loops in them, so you can slip the eyeglass arms through them. Pretty ingenious!
Do not use needles or other homemade tools around the house to clean your hearing aids—you risk destroying the sensitive electronics found within. Instead, buy a special hearing aid cleaning kit. They include things like a wax removal brush, wax removal pick, tube and vent cleaner, and a battery door opener and magnet.
Earplugs and hearing protection
Yep, you read that right. Even when you have hearing loss, you should protect your residual hearing if you're going to be exposed to loud noise, such as an outdoor concert or fireworks. Wear earplugs. It's just one part of hearing loss prevention.
Jewelry and holsters
The company Deafmetal sells a variety of stylish jewelry and holsters for hearing aid and cochlear implant wearers. They also make safety rings that look like earrings but are actually devices to keep hearing aids in place.
Where can I buy hearing aid accessories?
Hearing aid accessories can be purchased online from major retailers like Walmart and Amazon, and from smaller companies like Ear Gear, Earstay, and AidKeeper, along with many smaller businesses. For cochlear implants, the manufacturer Cochlear sells many accessories, too.
But your best bet is often a recommendation from your hearing care provider, who may sell some of these accessories at their clinic, too.