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How to Help Child Adjust to Hearing Aids

Or Keep From Losing Them


Updated February 20, 2011

My own parents never had a problem with me taking out my hearing aids. I was told that when I first got my hearing aids, I wanted them in. However, many parents of newly diagnosed deaf and hard of hearing children do have problems getting their children to stop taking the hearing aids out, or the young child refuses to wear the hearing aid. Here are some methods gathered from the forum and the web, for getting a young hearing impaired child to wear their hearing aids (or keep from losing them):

I have a three year old with a bilateral loss. I had the same problems with him in the beginning. I used a sticker chart to get him to keep them on. Start with frequent rewards and praises. I put his aid on and then I put a sticker on. After he kept his aid on for five minutes I would point to his aids and clap and cheer and put on another sticker. On the first day we put on ALOT of stickers. I extended the time between stickers each time. When he would take off his hearing aid I would show him the chart and say uh oh no sticker. I would also say things like "you took your aid off, you must be ready for a nap". You might want to make sure the molds are comfortable and that the aids are programmed right. If the aids are not programmed right it can be very uncomfortable. Also, remember that sometimes sound can be overwhelming and they need down time. Best of luck to you.

Hearing aids can certainly be a challenge! Ask him why he doesn't like them. Make sure they fit well. Use a lubricant that you can purchase at your audiologist. Try using them only in quiter situations for awhile. Stores, restaurants and other public places can be very noisy and annoying to a hearing aid user. Make sure the hearing aids are not too loud or soft. For that you may have to have him tested with the hearing aids on again. If your son realizes that he is getting a benefit from them, he will want to wear them. That is the hard part. Keep at it and make putting the hearing aids on part of daily routine, like brushing hair and getting dressed.

If a young child takes out the hearing aids, just put them back in again, calmly. You may want to give the child a short break in between.

Other suggestions from parents:

  • Use hair tape (I remember using this to keep from losing my hearing aids)
  • Use fish line
  • use toys to motivate the child to keep the hearing aids in
  • Use a loop, cord, string or clip, for holding the hearing aids (available from deaf/hoh product vendors). Some of these solutions are used with safety pins.
  • A frustrated father of a hard of hearing child developed Ear Gear, a loop and locked case system.
Babyhearing.org has an illustrated page of advice, "How can I help my baby adjust to wearing hearing aids?"

What have you tried to keep your child's hearing aids in? What worked best? Email me.

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