Feedback is a major problem for people who wear hearing aids. It happens when sound from the speaker travels back to the microphone, creating a loop. The loop leaks sound, and creates the squealing or chirping sound that you've grown to hate. Fortunately, there are some ways to avoid having to listen to feedback in your ear. Here are three things that you can try.
Get rid of excess ear wax
Ear wax is supposed to work its way out your ears naturally, but it's hard for this to happen when hearing aids are blocking its exit. Since it can't get out, ear wax can become compressed inside your ear canal, and can block as much as 80% of your ear canals diameter. This affects the way sound travels inside your ear, and can create feedback.
You can get rid of excess ear wax at home, but you need to be very careful. Avoid sticking anything sharp or pointy inside your ear, since this can cause damage. Use an over-the-counter ear wax dissolving product, and if that doesn't help, see your doctor for help.
Make sure your hearing aid is sitting properly
Your hearing aids are custom-made to perfectly fit inside your ear canal, and they work best when they're sitting properly. If your hearing aid has become partially dislodged, and is not pushed in as far as it should be, a feedback loop can be created. Take your hearing aid out and try to put it back in, being very careful to follow the natural shape of your ear canal. If you still hear the feedback when your hearing aid is in the right place, there may be a problem with the fit of your hearing aid.
Clean your hearing aid carefully
Aggressive cleaning removes every trace of ear wax from your hearing aids, but it can also damage them. Hearing aids are fairly delicate and you can damage them if you scrub them with a wet cloth. When you clean your hearing aids, use a dry tissue. Be especially careful when you're cleaning the microphone port, since this part is easy to damage, and when it's damaged, you'll hear feedback. Don't poke anything into the port to try to dislodge stubborn ear wax.
Feedback is an annoying problem, but there are lots of things you can do to prevent it. If you're still suffering from feedback noises after trying these tips, visit your local hearing center for hearing aids comparisons right away.