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Why do my hearing aids whistle?

The disturbing whistling or squeaking noise coming from your hearing aid is caused by feedback. Feedback occurs when the sound coming out of your hearing aid loops back around and goes into the hearing aid’s microphone. This sound is annoying to you and to those around you, but you should be able to reduce or eliminate the noise by taking a few simple steps.

Eliminating Hearing Aid Feedback

Sound can leak from your hearing aids for several reasons. If you are experiencing a lot of feedback in your new hearing aids, one of the following reasons could be to blame:

  • Poor fit. If your hearing aid’s earmold does not fit in your ear properly, sound will leak out and back into the device’s microphone, causing the whistle sound. If you do not have custom earmolds, this problem may continue. If you did have earmolds made to fit your ear, you should return to your hearing care provider to check the fit. If he or she determines that poor fit is the cause of your feedback, the earmold will have to be remade.
     
  • Wax in your ears. Our ears produce wax naturally to trap and expel foreign substances, but when you have wax build-up in your ears and insert your hearing aids on top of the wax, the sound coming out of the amplifier will be blocked and returned to the microphone, causing a squeal. Unfortunately, a quick swipe in your ear with a cotton swab probably will not do the trick. If this is a continual problem, see your hearing care professional for help.
     
  • Blocked microphone. If the hearing aid’s microphone is covered with wax or debris, it will make a noise. Gently cleaning the holes of the microphone with a wax pick or hook should solve the problem.


Some hearing aids are more sensitive to feedback than others. If feedback is an ongoing problem despite taking these steps to eliminate it, schedule a visit with your hearing professional.

Feedback Cancellation Features

Many new digital hearing aids have a feature called feedback cancellation. This system monitors the part of the signal that returns to the microphone and removes it before the sound is re-amplified. With this system, your hearing aid will automatically adjust itself based on anticipated feedback sounds and will not whistle or squeak. Feedback cancellation gives you peace of mind so you can take off a hat or hug a friend without worrying about a squawk from your hearing aid.

Tru-Tone Hearing Aid Centers Are Committed to Your Happiness

When you get your hearing aids at a Tru-Tone Hearing Aid Center, you will get our personalized service and a commitment to making your hearing aids work for you. If you are annoyed by feedback, we will work with you to fix the problem. Call now to schedule your hearing evaluation.