Summer time is filled with hot days and water fun! Below are some tips and tricks for maintaining cochlear implants and hearing aid equipment for kids with hearing loss throughout the warm months to avoid damage.
Develop a routine for rinsing off earmolds to eliminate any sunscreen/bug spray/bubbles that may have accumulated on the molds.
Remove the earmold by the tubing connected to tone hook, clean/rinse with dish soap, and let your earmold(s) air dry overnight.
To ensure no moisture bubbles are lodged within tubing, use air blower (usually provided by Audiologist!) to remove any moisture prior to re-attaching tubing to hearing aid.
Hearing aids are water resistant and many brands boast a high IP (ingress protection) rating – which indicates how well the hearing aid is protected against dust and water. Generally, hearing aids can stand to be submerged in water for a brief period of time (should a device be dropped into a puddle/pool/tub); however, it is recommended that kiddos remove hearing aids prior to swimming/running through sprinkler/bath time.
Following a day in the sun/sand/water, hearing aids can be placed in drying kit (either provided by Audiologist) or purchased online. There are tons of different options (portable and electric) that are available, depending on price point.
Each manufacturer has waterproof case options for its devices. This is generally selected by families at time of device selection as part of initial/upgrade kits; however, families are also able to purchase cases through their Audiologist or directly through manufacturer.
Cases can be re-used throughout the summertime, so CI users are able to utilize their equipment
If possible, utilize rechargeable batteries as often as possible as these batteries tend to be more resistant to moisture
Develop a nightly routine of placing devices in dryer that is provided within each initial kit by manufacturer. These can also be purchased directly through manufacturer
Whenever you are outside, and particularly around water, it is important for any hearing devices to be properly secured. Hearing aid users should wear a well-fitting earmold and cochlear implant users require an appropriate magnet strength.
Ear gear is a spandex/nylon sleeve that fits over various hearing devices and protects the device from sweat, moisture, dirt and dust. This is a terrific option for active kiddos!