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Navigating a vacation while managing your hearing aids doesn’t have to be a stressful experience. With proper planning and precautions, you can enjoy your trip just as much as anyone else. This article will provide useful tips and guidelines for hearing aid users going on vacation.
Before You Leave On Vacation
There are plenty of vacation opportunities in this world, such as cruising, Disney World, or exploring the world. All of which can be done with hearing aids.
One of the most important steps in preparing for your trip is ensuring that you have all the necessary items for your hearing aids.
- Batteries: Be sure to bring extra batteries or a charger for your hearing aids. Make sure you have enough to last for the duration of your vacation plus a little extra just in case.
- Cleaning tools: Don’t forget your cleaning brush, wax pick or wire loop, and vent cleaner to keep your hearing aids functioning well. You want to be sure to have extra wax traps as they are the most likely reason hearing aids quit working.
- Dehumidifier: This can help to remove moisture from your hearing aids, especially if you’re traveling to Disney World or another humid destination. Moisture is the enemy of all electronics.
- Spare parts: Pack extra tubes, domes, or receivers, if applicable.
- Spare hearing aids: If possible, bring a backup pair of hearing aids.
Check Your Hearing Aids
In the days leading up to your trip, double-check your hearing aids’ functionality. Make sure they’re clean, working properly, and have no signs of damage. It would be a good idea to schedule a follow-up visit at your audiologist’s office to ensure aids are at full performance.
Research Your Destination
Try to find out what accommodations are available for hearing-impaired people at your destination. Many places offer devices like assistive listening systems or captions for guided tours and performances.
Traveling With Hearing Aids
Protect Your Hearing Aids
When you’re on the move, it’s crucial to keep your hearing aids safe and dry. Remember, they are delicate electronic devices.
- Avoid exposing your hearing aids to extreme heat, such as leaving them in a car on a hot day.
- If you’re traveling to a beach or pool, remember to take out your hearing aids before going in the water unless you have fully waterproof aids.
- At night, leave your hearing aids in a dry and safe place.
Handling Airport Security
Going through airport security with hearing aids is usually straightforward. According to the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), you are not required to remove your hearing aids at security checkpoints. However, if you’re wearing cochlear implant devices or body-worn aids, you may need to inform the officer. See my guide for using hearing aids on airplanes.
Care for Your Hearing Aids
It’s important to maintain your hearing aids’ routine care even when you’re on vacation. This includes daily cleaning and using your dehumidifier, if needed.
Use Appropriate Settings
If your hearing aids have different settings, make sure to adjust them according to your environment. Many modern hearing aids come with noise-reducing features which can be helpful in crowded places.
Communicate Your Needs
Don’t be afraid to ask for accommodations or let people know about your hearing impairment. Most places will be happy to assist in whatever way they can to make your experience enjoyable.
Consider the beach activities that you participate in
Protecting your hearing aids at the beach involves removing them before entering water or applying sunscreen, using a waterproof case, avoiding extreme temperatures and direct sunlight, and utilizing a hearing aid dryer or dehumidifier to combat moisture from sweat. Additionally, investing in hearing aid covers, maintaining regular cleaning routines, having a backup pair, checking the battery, and consulting with your audiologist can provide further protection for your hearing aids during beach visits.
Emergency Hearing Aid Situations
Despite your best planning, sometimes things can go wrong. Here’s what to do in case of some common emergencies.
Lost or Broken Hearing Aids
Losing or breaking your hearing aids while on vacation is a significant concern. Here’s what you can do:
- Always keep your hearing aids in a safe and consistent place to avoid losing them.
- If you brought spare hearing aids, use them.
- Reach out to a local hearing aid center for help if aids are broken as they may be able to fix them in the office. If hearing aids get lost, try to find them. If unable, reach out to your home audiologist so that they can order you the L&D replacement set.
If your batteries run out or you lose them:
- Look for a local pharmacy, Walmart, or grocery store. Most will carry standard hearing aid batteries.
- Try a local hearing aid center if you cannot find batteries elsewhere.
Remember, it’s important to always carry spare batteries.
Taking a vacation with hearing aids might seem intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. With the right planning and precautions, you can enjoy a stress-free vacation. Safe travels!