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RIC Hearing Aid: Quick Start Guide

Need help with your hearing aid? Check out this quick-start guide!

Stephen Sherbin

By Stephen Sherbin

5 min read
The Hearing Aids:
  • Red is the right ear and blue is the left ear.
  • On the spine of the hearing aid is a rocker.
  • If you push the end of the rocker closest to the cable quickly the volume goes up in both aids with each push. If you push the end farthest from the cable the volume goes down in both aids with each push.
  • You will generally not need to do this, but the hearing aids can be turned off manually by holding the down volume button for 5 to 7 seconds depending on the brand you have.
  • They can be turned on manually by holding the down volume button for three to seven seconds depending upon the brand you have.
  • Once they turn on, they are in Bluetooth pairing mode for the first 2 minutes and will look for devices to pair with. This generally includes your cell phone which should be within approximately 10 ft to pair consistently each day.
  • There are four or five steps to properly inserting the hearing aids. I have a demonstration video available on the Better Hearing Now YouTube page. Here are the steps I recommend:
1. Set the body of the hearing aid on top of the ear, not behind the ear, with the cable coming forward over the ear. This will generally line up the cable and dome tip.
2. Grip the dome tip and insert it into the ear canal pushing forward with your thumb. The ear canal goes forward towards your nose not straight in.
3. Once the tip begins to enter the canal you can switch to your forefinger to finish insertion. I generally hook my fingernail at the top of the tail to push it in further.
4. Once the tip is properly inserted and the cable is flush against your head check the tail to make sure that it is sitting in the bottom of the bowl of your ear. If not use your forefinger to push it over the ridge into the bowl of the ear.
5. At this point, you can take the body of the hearing aid and slide it a little bit further to the back to make sure that it's snug and less visible.
It is important to know that the tail also called the canal lock or retention lock is very important. It sits in the bowl of the ear to keep the tip from popping back out of the canal. This is how you avoid losing the hearing aid while wearing it.
The Charger:
  • Chargers may vary slightly. There are some that charge only while plugged in and others that have built-in battery packs that store up to 3 days worth of charge.
  • Regardless of the version you have it is necessary to place the hearing aids in the correct slots based on color. Once this is done, the charger or hearing aids will begin blinking. The color code is generally red for nearly out of power, orange for mid-range power and green for almost completely charged. Usually the lights will be solid green when fully charged.
  • Please be aware the charger will automatically turn the hearing aids off when inserted into the charger and automatically turn the hearing aids on when removed from the charger.
  • Remember, the hearing aids go into Bluetooth pairing mode for 2 minutes after the hearing aids turn on. It's important to have your phone within 10 ft so that it will pair each morning. If it fails to pair you can put the hearing aids back in the charger and remove them again to get it into Bluetooth mode again.
Cell Phones and Bluetooth:
  • Bluetooth pairing allows the hearing aids to connect with the cell phone wirelessly. This also allows you to receive your phone calls through the hearing aids, in stereo corrected for your hearing loss. An active Bluetooth phone connection also reduces the room volume by 30% by turning down the external microphones allowing you to have a more focused conversation on the phone.
  • Anything you can do on the phone involving sound can be done through the hearing aids as well. This includes playing music, YouTube videos, zoom calls or FaceTime calls.
  • Many other types of devices are able to connect with the hearing aids through the Bluetooth link. Laptop computers, desktop computers and iPads generally have Bluetooth capability today as well. Even newer television sets have an open Bluetooth channel that can link to hearing aids.
  • Bluetooth connectivity functions differently based on cell phone brand and by hearing aid brand. Generally Phonak and Unitron brands will connect directly through your Bluetooth link in your settings under Connections regardless of whether you have an Android or an iPhone.
  • All other brands of hearing aids will connect through the Bluetooth Connections link with Android, but connect differently with iPhone. With iPhone, other brands connect through the Accessibility link using a connection format called MiFi. This link can be found by clicking accessibility and then scrolling down to Hearing Devices or Hearing Enhancements. The connection and battery life icons will be shown at the top of the screen.

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