Masks causing problems for those wearing hearing aids, local business owner says
For those with hearing aids, wearing a mask amid the COVID-19 pandemic has been costly, both from a financial and health standpoint, according to Cindy Hoest from the Hearing Aid Office in Craig.
Hoest says she’s had a number of patients come into the office in Craig needing to fix or replace current hearing aids due to them falling out when taking off masks. In some cases, Hoest says patients are also choosing to not wear a mask so as to not lose their hearing aids.
“It’s a tough decision for those needing to wear hearing aids right now,” Hoest said. “If you are wearing behind-the-ear hearing aids and you have a mask on and then take the mask off, it can become tangled and cause a sort of slingshot affect, where it yanks the hearing aid out of the ear and throw it to the ground.”
Hearing aids can cost anywhere from $600 to $3400, Hoest added, so it’s an expensive issue for many.
The mask can cause discomfort when worn with behind-the-ear hearing aids. After all, unless you have a large space between your scalp and ear, there’s limited real estate to work with. Anyone who wears both hearing aids and eyeglasses knows all about that.
For Hoest, she’s trying to educate those wearing behind-the-ear hearing aids with masks so that they can avoid paying a large chunk of change to get them repaired.
“It’s almost like a PSA,” Hoest said. “I’m just trying to make people more aware and to be careful right now because we’re seeing an uptick in people needing hearing aids replaced because they came off with masks.”
Hoest added that a clip of sorts (like used with sunglasses) could help save their hearing aids when taking masks on and off.
“I just want people to be more mindful when they’re taking their masks off,” Hoest said. “This clip would allow you to pin the string to your collar or shirt so that if you did pull your hearing aid out accidentally when taking your mask off, it wouldn’t fall to the ground.”
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