Hearing Aid Batteries
Like any portable electronic device, hearing aids require batteries to operate. While a decade ago, rechargeable batteries were not powerful enough to be practically used in hearing aids, they have since become the new standard. Hearing aids that use disposable batteries may still be the best option for some people, and at Audiology Consultants of Panama City we offer all types of disposable batteries used in hearing aids.
Rechargeable Hearing Aid Batteries
Like many other gadgets we use on a daily basis, hearing aids have gravitated towards lithium-ion rechargeable batteries. For most people, rechargeable batteries are the best option for new hearing aids.
Rechargeable batteries in most hearing aid models will last in excess of a typical day’s worth of use, even while using the new low-power Bluetooth protocol. Each night, when you remove your hearing aids, wipe them down with a clean, dry cloth and place them in their charging station. In the morning, you’ll have a full charge and be ready for another full day of use.
Most of these batteries only take about 3 hours to achieve a full charge, so if you find your batteries dead in the middle of a day (perhaps if you forgot to charge them overnight), a relatively short amount of time can get you enough of a charge for the remainder of the day.
The lifespan of a rechargeable battery is currently about 5 years (up from 3 years, just a few years ago). While your rechargeable batteries can be replaced if they start having issues, it may be that your hearing aids should be replaced as well, as the typical hearing aid lifespan is about 3–7 years.
Hearing aids that employ rechargeable batteries have an advantage with dirt and water resistance. The battery compartments on hearing aids that use disposable batteries create an inroad for moisture and dirt. Even when your hearing aids are not submerged, over time moisture can accumulate inside the hearing aids. With rechargeables, more of the hearing aid can be sealed, meaning that even submerging your hearing aids periodically should not destroy them. (Though it is still the best practice to keep your hearing aids dry and clean as much as possible.)
Those with arthritis may especially appreciate rechargeable batteries, as manipulating the tiny batteries and small compartment doors in hearing aids that employ disposables can be difficult.
Disposable Hearing Aid Batteries
Disposable hearing aid batteries are usually zinc-air batteries, meaning they are powered by zinc when it is activated by air. Once activated by air, the batteries run continuously until they expire. You can increase the life of the batteries by letting them air out for a moment once you activate them, before putting them into your hearing aids, and by opening the battery compartments of your hearing aids at night.
Disposable batteries come in 4 sizes, from small to large. The largest size is still about half the diameter of a dime. While the smallest battery will last about 3–7 days, the largest size will last 9–20 days. Typically manufacturers will employ the largest battery that will fit into a particular model, as the larger batteries provide more power for a longer period of time. The battery sizes are standardized and color coded, so when you purchase a pack of batteries you need only look for the right color for your model of hearing aid.
Disposable hearing aid batteries are available at many places where typical household supplies are purchased. Drugstores, groceries, mass retailers, electronic stores, and online outlets will all stock hearing aid batteries. Some people prefer to purchase directly from hearing aid retailers as we tend to have a higher stock turnover, meaning your batteries may be “fresher” and thus last longer.
Since disposable hearing aid batteries last longer than a single charge on rechargeable batteries and do not require a power outlet to recharge, they may be a better option for those who frequently find themselves away from a power source. Campers or travelers may prefer the option to simply replace a battery rather than find a power source.
Disposable batteries do pose a risk to pets and small children, so be sure to dispose of your batteries where little ones can’t get to them, and keep your stock of fresh batteries high up and out of reach of pets and children.
Hearing Conservation - Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations concerning Occupational Noise Exposure require hearing conservation programs for employees exposed to elevated levels of noise. Noise is one of the few preventable sources of hearing loss, yet it is one of the leading occupational injuries. Worker’s compensation claims for hearing loss can be prevented using proper hearing conservation programs. The professionals at Audiology Consultants can help your company develop a Hearing Conservation Program. Because we are a local company, we can work with you at your convenience and our staff will familiarize themselves with your workplace and requirements. We offer the following services:
Audiogram Review and Consultation
Audiologists review the hearing tests, determine work-relatedness and evaluate medical referrals. These are reviewed in-person, on-site and they include on-going assistance from our professional staff.
On-site training on hearing protection designed to fit your company’s specific needs.
Personal Hearing Protection
We assist employees with proper personal protection both for the workplace and for their recreational needs.
We do a walk-around survey of noise levels in areas of your company and during each individual shift to establish a baseline and determine your needs.
On-Site Hearing Tests
No long down time for employees – we come to your facility and perform the tests in an efficient and cost-effective manner. All testing is done by CAOHC certified technicians.
Data Analysis and Reporting
Hearing test and noise survey information is processed into a company-specific database and the detailed reports form your compliance program.