Electronic devices like hearing aids are vulnerable to humidity and water. No surprise there. But what is it about water that’s so damaging? Well, as it turns out, it’s often not the actual water itself that harms the electronic device. It’s the microscopic impurities and ions in the water. If you’re unlucky, the ions in the water form a chain that creates a connection between two contact points in your electronic device. Then, when your device is turned on, the ion chain will lead the electricity somewhere it isn’t supposed to. And that creates a power shortage. Annoying, right?!
In theory, you could dry your device completely and make it work again (assuming the ions caused the problem to begin with). But… we wouldn’t recommend trying that approach!
Metal parts are another challenge
Metal is an inherent component of the circuit in an electronic device. In hearing aids, the metal parts are protected by a coating to prevent water from creating corrosion. But sometimes that coating isn’t enough. For example, if the hearing aid is repeatedly exposed to humidity or rain, without being dried or cleaned. Just like you wouldn’t do this to your tablet or your watch, you shouldn’t do it to your hearing aid.
To keep your hearing aids completely dry, you’ll need a hearing aid dryer
Most hearing aids are designed to withstand water and humidity. With coating on metal parts and a good design that doesn’t let water in easily, hearing aids are generally well protected. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take an extra step to keep them dry. The more you take care to maintain and clean your hearing aids, the better they’ll work and the longer they’ll last.
There are many ways to dry your hearing aids, though. Drying boxes and dehumidifiers are some popular approaches.
How to use a hearing aid drying box
Drying boxes are small jewellery- or watchlike boxes that use air and heat to dry hearing aids. They’re available for all hearing aids, both rechargeable and conventional ones, and they’re generally easy to use. For conventional hearing aids, you simply place the hearing aids in the drying box, close it up again and hit the start button. Drying can take anywhere from 45 minutes to 8 hours.
Drying boxes for rechargeable hearing aids work as a charger too
That’s pretty handy, because you can just put your hearing aids in the dryer overnight, and the next day you’re all set with a fresh, dry and charged set of hearing aids. Voila!
Having said that, if you happen to go out in the rain with your hearing aids on or accidentally wear them in the shower, it’s a good idea to dry them straight away. Some drying boxes come with UV lighting as an added bonus to sanitize your devices while you’re drying them.
Non-electronic dehumidifiers for your hearing aids
Listen to us, going on about drying boxes! There are, of course, other ways to dehumidify your hearing aids, like desiccants. Hearing aid desiccants come in the form of pellets, discs or linings. That’s obviously very handy when there’s no power socket near you and you can’t plug in a hearing aid drying box. Desiccants are easy to get hold of online or at your local drugstore.
A sleeve can help protect your hearing aid from rain or perspiration
If you want to prevent water or humidity from entering the hearing aid altogether, you can get water-resistant hearing aid pouches like the Ear Gear pouch, which protects your hearing aids from dirt and other things too. It’s a great advantage when you’re playing sport with your hearing aid on and perspire a lot.