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Bone conduction hearing aid

Published: 14/11/2022
Last edited: 16/12/2022
Code: 01207

This guide has been put together to help parents and carers make sure their child receives the best benefit from their bone conduction hearing aid. It includes tips and troubleshooting. If you need further help after following this guide, please contact us.

Why does my child have a bone conduction hearing aid instead of behind the ear hearing aids?

A bone conduction hearing aid transfers sound through the bone, directly to the cochlea, rather than through the ear. This means it bypasses any problems which are happening in the outer or middle ear, for example, glue ear.

Your child will have been offered a bone conduction hearing aid only if behind the ear hearing aids are not suitable. it is also possible that your child may go on to have a bone anchored hearing aid in the future if the issues with the middle ear persist.

How do I put the bone conduction aid on my child?

The bone conductor works best when the sound processor is placed on the mastoid bone which is the bone behind the ear. This is because the sound is transmitted through the bone to the cochlear.

If your child has microtia or a unilateral hearing loss, then your audiologist may recommend keeping it behind the affected ear to help with awareness of sound.

If your child has a soft headband the processor is facing up and the bone conductor is on the inside of the band. If your child has a hardband the bone conductor is at the end of the band and the processor on the top. The soft band is adjustable to so the fit can be tight.

How do I switch the hearing aid on/off?

To switch the hearing aid on you need to close the battery drawer. To switch the hearing aid off you need to open the battery drawer.

You can either switch it on just before you put the hearing aid on or you can switch it on once it is placed securely.

When you switch it on, it may make some whistling or you might feel it vibrate, which shows it is working.

How do I change the battery?

The battery is located inside the battery drawer. Open the battery drawer with the sound processor facing backwards. When you change the battery, remember to remove the sticky tab and make sure it goes into the battery compartment the right way round, the positive symbol (+) on the battery should face upwards and be visible. If the battery compartment sticks when you try to close it, don’t force it – the battery is probably the wrong way round and you will need to check and readjust it.

On average the batteries last between seven and 10 days. For young children please change the batteries on a regular basis. We recommend selecting a day and changing the same day every week to make sure your child can always hear.

Never leave battery packs unattended or in reach of young children. They can cause significant harm if ingested.

What is the brown book for? How do I get new batteries?

The brown book proves your child’s hearing aids are provided by the NHS and they are entitled to free batteries for their hearing aids.

The audiologist should provide you with enough batteries to last until your child’s next appointment. If you run out, you are welcome to attend your nearest site to collect more. Please check with our admin team that someone will be available to provide them. There are also other locations and centres which will provide batteries but you must always take your child’s brown book if you attend these. For a local list, please ask us.

When and how often should my child wear their bone conduction hearing aid?

Ideally the hearing aid should be worn all day, every day. It can take time for some children to adapt to the hearing aid and the sounds it will provide. Some children will reject the hearing aid and pull it off. Try persisting with putting it back on and using it at times when your child will start realising its benefit, for example at story time and when watching television. Build up the time wearing it every day. If your child goes on to have an implant it is important they are used to the sound of the aid and have been wearing it consistently.

When should my child not wear their bone conduction hearing aid?

You should take your child’s hearing aid off when they go to bed at night, switch the hearing aid off and store it safely.

The hearing aid is not waterproof and care should be taken when using them in the rain. They should be removed for bath time or swimming.

How do I clean the bone conduction hearing aid?

If the casing of the hearing aid appears dirty, it must only be cleaning with a non-foaming wet wipe – alcohol wipes/pads are ideal for this. Do not clean the black boxes with water.

If the hearing aid band is dirty, you can put this in the wash but you must ensure you take out the receiver, microphone and the wire.

Please bear in mind that if the band is washed excessively, it will start to lose it’s elasticity and the bone conduction hearing aid can become less effective.

How do I put the bone conduction hearing aid back together after disconnecting?

In order for the hearing aid to work correctly all parts must be connected back together. The sound processor clips back on.

The wire has a thick and thin prong, you must make sure that these go the correct way round into the receiver and microphone.

What should I do if the bone conduction hearing aid will not switch on or is too soft?

  1. Check that the battery drawer is completely shut.
  2. Check the battery has been inserted correctly.
  3. Check the battery has not run out (change the battery if necessary).
  4. Check all parts are connected correctly.

If there is still a problem, please call us to arrange a repair appointment.

What should I do if the bone conduction hearing aid is too loud?

The most common cause of a hearing aid being perceived as too loud is that your child has not yet adapted to the sound. Gradually increasing the duration your child wears their hearing aid should help. A bone conduction hearing aid will not over amplify sound, therefore the volume should not be uncomfortable, however if after persistence your child is finding sounds uncomfortable please contact us and we will be able to arrange an appointment.

What should I do if the bone conduction hearing aid is whistling when placed on my child’s head?

Whistling (also known as feedback) happens when the sound is escaping, this could be because the bone conductor is not firmly placed on the head. This can sometimes happen if the soft band is not placed correctly or if after long-term use has become too loose. Please check the softband in the first instance. If the problem still persists contact us to arrange an appointment.

What should I do if the bone conductor makes my child’s ear sore?

Try rotating which ear the bone conductor is placed behind on a daily or weekly basis to stop any sore spots from occurring.

I think there is a problem with the hearing aid or the hearing aid has been lost

Please contact us if:

  • you need advice about your child’s hearing aid
  • there seems to be a problem with the hearing aid after following the guidance above
  • your child has lost their hearing aid – we will need to know whether they have lost the whole hearing aid or just individual parts.

Useful resources

Contact us

0300 123 2670

Admin Team are available:
Monday, Thursday and Friday, 8am to 4.30pm
Tuesday and Wednesday, 8am to 5pm.

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