As per the latest government guidelines, masks have now become compulsory in enclosed spaces such as supermarkets, public transport, banks, post offices etc and those who fail to oblige could be fined up to £100.
With this in effect, wearing a mask can be a bit of a hassle for some people with hearing loss and are using over-the-ear hearing aids. The elastic bands on the masks placed over the ears can get in the way of the tube that connects the hearing aid to the speaker that sits in your ear. People can sometimes forget that they are wearing a mask and also lose their hearing aid and end up breaking it when removing the mask.
Tips for wearing a face mask with hearing aids
- Try to use button extensions for face masks rather than looping the band behind the ears.
- Pull back any long hair into a bun or use a hair tie.
- Try and use masks with four strings that can be tied behind the head rather than looped around the ears
- Be more careful and ensure that the hearing aid is in place while wearing and removing the mask
- Where possible try to remove and wear masks in places where if the hearing aid is lost can be found easily such as your house, or a secluded area if in a public place.
- If the hearing aids are compatible with any app, make sure that you have it downloaded on your phone and make use of that if you lose the hearing aid.
- Don’t rush and take your time while removing masks.
- Try to remove the bands from one side at a time.
- Take a minute to ensure that your hearing aids are not tangled with the face mask when you remove them.
- If you are in a public place while removing masks, take a minute to ensure that the hearing aid is in place before you leave.
DIY mask extenders
You can also easily make your own mask extenders at home to ensure that the masks don’t interfere with the hearing aids. You can easily make this using a strip of ribbon, twill tape, strips of t-shirt, felt, or anything similar.
All you have to do is sew in a button on either side of the strip of ribbon or cloth strip. You can then attach the elastic loop of the face mask on the buttons instead of looping around the ears.
You can also sew on buttons on your headbands and loop the face mask onto those instead of your ears.
It understandably is a tricky situation but the first thing to remember is not to panic in case of loss of your hearing aids. It is best to remember the above-mentioned tips and follow them. In cases where all else fails, it is a good idea to make sure that your hearing aids have a damage cover or insurance.