With the cold weather quickly approaching, people who wear hearing aids may be forced to face many different challenges. Whether it's playing your favourite winter sports, and wearing a mask now being mandatory, it's important that you are comfortable and that your hearing aids are at their best.

On your marks, get set, play!
Without a doubt, one of winter’s many pleasures is playing outdoors; walking, skating, sledding, snowshoeing and snowman building sessions are some of the season’s must-do activities.

If the thought of removing your hearing aids to avoid losing them has ever crossed your mind, please don't do so! It is essential that you remain alert at all times to what is going on around you, especially when partaking in physical activity.

Although the majority of hearing aids are equipped with a certain protection against water and dust, the cold is certainly not ideal for electronic parts and batteries. Condensation can form when going from intense cold to heat, as can often be seen on our eyeglasses while wearing a mask.

This moisture can lodge itself in the circuit and damage it. Think about wearing a hat, earmuffs or headband in order to protect and keep them safely in place. Note that many accessories and sets are available to help control humidity in your hearing aids. If you tend to sweat, or find yourself in high humidity environments frequently, consider investing in an electric dehumidifier.

In order to maximize hearing during your activities, ask your hearing care professional to add a program specific to your sport. I'm thinking of those who wear helmets for skiing, snowmobiles and ATVs. Often, wearing a helmet can create a loud whistling noise which can be easily managed with a small adjustment.

For a beautiful family holiday season
Although family reunions may be on a smaller scale this year, it can still become stressful for a person wearing hearing aids to be in a noisy and hyper stimulating environment; conversations, loud noise, music, phew! However, here are a few things you can do to help ensure a good time with your loved ones.

• While respecting social distancing, get closer to your interlocutor. Place yourself in front of them to see their face clearly.

• Our hosts often play background music. Unfortunately, the music is often louder than the voice of the person you are talking to, obscuring the conversation. Don't hesitate to ask your hosts to turn the music down or even turn it off. Music and background noise from people speaking loudly around you can create a cacophony that largely reduces speech comprehension. Those who wear hearing aids are forced to work much harder to stay focused, understand and follow the conversation. They will get tired much easier than someone with normal hearing and therefore tend to withdraw from the conversation.

• When possible, stay away from sources of noise that may obstruct the discussion. Remind yourself that hearing loss is not visually noticeable, and that those around you may forget that you are wearing hearing aids.

We wish you a winter filled with memorable and magical moments. Please do not hesitate to contact us for more information or questions. Make the most of this magical season!