Since your baby cannot tell you whether the hearing instruments are working properly or not, you have to take an active role in checking their performance. It is ideal to check the instruments at the end of each day so that they are ready for action when your baby wakes up the next morning. This checklist will help you to carry out these examinations easily and effectively
- Use a battery tester to see that the battery is fully charged, and always replace low batteries.
- With the earmold connected to the hearing instrument, use a listening tube or listening stethoscope to listen to each device and each combination of devices your baby uses. For example, if your baby uses more than one program/memory or an FM system, listen to each of these to check there is a clear and undistorted signal. If you are using an FM system at home, set the FM microphone/transmitter close to radio or television. Listen to the signal as you move to different areas of the house to check for interference. As your child gets older and begins to use the telephone, you will want to test that signal as well.
Note: If your child has severe or profound hearing loss, consider lowering the volume setting prior to your listening check.
- The volume control on Phonak instruments can be deactivated or covered to avoid it being adjusted by accident. If for some reason it has not been deactivated you should check that the volume control is set correctly based on the recommendation of your audiologist.
- Make sure that the opening to the ear canal portion of the earmold is free of wax. Should you find wax there, simply wipe it with a damp cloth or use a wax loop or brush to remove it. If the earmolds are visibly soiled, wipe them with a damp cloth. Be sure not to get the hearing instruments wet.
- Check that the earmold tubing is free of moisture, as a drop of water blocking the tube can prevent sound getting to the ear. If you see moisture, detach the earmold from the hearing instrument and use an earmold blower to dry it. If the earmold has a vent, blow the air through that opening too.
- Look closely to see that the earmold and tubing do not have any cracks or tears that could lead to feedback (whistling or squealing). The audiologist can replace any damaged tubing easily. A torn earmold will need replacing