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Take your hearing aids out, hear more

You could hear more by taking your hearing aids out.

How does that work? Well, I was in a meeting yesterday, sat around a table with seven other people – after a while I realised that I wasn’t hearing several of them as well as I normally would be. I did a quick check that the volume settings on my aids were correct – they were. I didn’t have a cold. I couldn’t think of any reason why I couldn’t hear them.

Until after the meeting, that is.

While at lunch, I took my hearing aids out and noticed that I had really sweaty ears (I have ITC aids and suffer from the occlusion effect). I left the aids out for five to ten minutes to let my ears dry out – popped them back and my hearing magically returned to normal. My sweaty ears had reduced my hearing slightly – not by much, but enough to stop me hearing those people in the meeting.