Can I Wear my Glasses & Hearing Aids at the Same Time?

Hearing impaired man working with laptop and mobile phone at home or office while wearing hearing aids and glasses at the same time.

You’ve probably noticed that when movies or television shows get really intense, they start using close ups (maybe even extreme close ups). That’s because the human face communicates a lot of information (more information that you’re probably consciously aware of). To say that human beings are very facially focused is, well, not a stretch.

So it’s no surprise that the face is where all of our main sensors are–eyes, ears, mouth, nose. The face is cram packed (in an aesthetically wonderful way, of course).

But this can become a problem when you need multiple assistive devices. For example, wearing glasses and hearing aids can become a little… cumbersome. In some cases, you might even have challenges. These tips on how to wear hearing aids and glasses at the same time can help you handle those challenges–and get ready for your (metaphorical) closeup!

Do hearing aids interfere with wearing glasses?

As both your eyes and your ears will often need a little assistance, it’s common for people to have a concern that their eyeglasses and hearing aids might impair each other. That’s because there are physical limitations on both the shape of eyeglasses and the placement of hearing aids. For many people, wearing them together can cause discomfort.

There are a couple of key concerns:

  • Pressure: Both eyeglasses and hearing aids need to attach to your face somehow; often, they use the ear as a good anchor. However, having both a hearing aid and a pair of eyeglasses wrap around your ears can create a sense of pain and pressure. This can also produce strain and pressure around the temples.
  • Skin irritation: All of those bits hanging off your face can also sometimes cause skin irritation. Mostly this occurs because neither your hearing aid or glasses are fitting properly. This skin soreness and irritation can be, well, irritating.
  • Poor audio quality: It’s not unheard of for your glasses to knock your hearing aids out of position, resulting in less than ideal audio quality.

So, can you wear glasses with hearing aids? Of course you can ! It might seem like they’re mutually exclusive, but behind-the-ear hearing aids can successfully be worn with glasses!

How to wear hearing aids and glasses at the same time

Every style of hearing aid will be compatible with your glasses–it’s just a question of how much work it will take. For the purposes of this article, we’ll be talking about behind-the-ear style hearing aids. This is because inside-the-canal hearing aids are much smaller and fit entirely in your ear. There’s usually absolutely no conflict between inside-the-canal hearing aids and glasses.

Behind-the-ear hearing aids, however, sit behind your ear. They’re connected by a wire to a speaker that sits in your ear canal. You should talk to your hearing specialist about what type of hearing aid is best for your needs (they each have their own benefits and drawbacks).

If you wear your glasses every day all day, you might want to opt for an inside-the-canal style hearing aid; but this style of device won’t work for everyone. To be able to hear adequately, some people require a BTE style device; but don’t worry–there’s a way to make just about any hearing aid work with your glasses.

Adjust your glasses

In some cases, the type and style of glasses you wear will have a significant impact on how comfortable your hearing aids are. If you have large BTE devices, invest in glasses that have thinner frames. Work with your optician to select a glasses style that will accommodate your hearing aids.

And it’s also important to make sure your glasses fit properly. You want them tight (but not too tight) and you want to make sure they aren’t too loose. If your glasses are jiggling around everywhere, you may compromise your hearing aid results.

Don’t be afraid to use accessories

So how can you wear glasses and hearing aids at the same time? Well, If you’re having problems managing both your glasses and hearing aids, take heart–you aren’t the only one! This is good news, because it means that there are devices you can use to make things just a little bit easier. Some of those devices include:

  • Retention bands: These bands fit around the back of your glasses, and they help your glasses stay in place. These are a great idea if you’re on the more active side.
  • Anti-slip hooks: These hooks also help to keep your glasses from sliding all over the place (and possibly taking your hearing aids with them). They’re a little more subtle than a retention band.
  • Specially designed devices: There are a wide variety of devices on the market designed specifically to make it easier to wear your hearing aids and glasses at the same time. Devices include pieces of fabric that hold your hearing aids in place and glasses with hearing aids built right in.

The goal with all of these devices is to secure your hearing aids, hold your glasses in place, and keep you feeling comfortable.

Can glasses cause hearing aid feedback?

There are certainly some reports out there that glasses may cause feedback with your hearing aids. And it does happen–but it’s not the most common complaint. In some cases, feedback you experience may be caused by something else (such as a television speaker or mobile phone speaker).

Still, if you’re experiencing hearing aid feedback and interference and you think your glasses are to blame, talk to your hearing specialist about possible solutions.

How to put on your hearing aids and glasses

Many of the difficulties associated with wearing hearing aids and glasses at the same time can be avoided by ensuring that all of your devices are being worn properly. You want them to fit right!

Here’s how you can go about doing that:

Put your glasses in place first. After all, your glasses are pretty rigid and they’re larger–this means they have less wiggle room in terms of adjustments.

Then, carefully place your hearing aid shell between your outer ear and your glasses earpiece. (Your glasses should be closest to your head.)

Adjust both as needed to be comfortable, then place the hearing aid microphone in your ear canal.

That’s all there is to it! Sort of–there’s definitely a learning curve when it comes to putting on and taking off your glasses without knocking your hearing aid out of place. But all it takes is a little practice and you’ll get the hang of it.

Take care of your hearing aids (and your glasses)

Sometimes, friction between your glasses and hearing aids occur because the devices aren’t working as intended. Sometimes things break! But those breakages can often be prevented with a little maintenance and regular care.

For your hearing aids:

  • Make sure to clean your hearing aids at least once a week.
  • Use a soft pick and a brush to remove debris and ear wax.
  • Also make sure to recharge your battery when needed (if your hearing aid is rechargeable)
  • When not using hearing aids, be sure to store them somewhere clean and dry.

For your glasses:

  • Clean your glasses when they become dirty. Usually, this is at least once a day!
  • To clean your glasses, use a soft, microfiber cloth. Do not use paper towels or even your shirt, as this could scratch your lenses.
  • When not using, store in a case. If you don’t have a case, just keep them in a dry place where they won’t be accidentally smashed or stepped on.
  • If your glasses stop fitting properly, take them in to your optician for an adjustment.

Professional help is sometimes required

Hearing aids and glasses are both complex devices (even though they may not seem like it on the surface). This means that it’s important to talk to professionals who can help you find the best fit possible for both your hearing aids and your glasses.

The more help you get up front, the less help you will need down the road (this is because you’ll be avoiding problems rather than trying to address those problems).

Hearing aids and glasses don’t have to fight

Like one of those family feuds that’s been going on too long (with plenty of close-ups, of course), it’s now time to admit that glasses and hearing aids don’t have to be enemies. Yes, needing both of these devices can create some challenges. But your hearing specialist can help you choose the right hearing aid for your needs–so you can focus less on keeping your hearing aids in place and more on enjoying time with your family.

Want more information?

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