Who is this leaflet for?
This leaflet is for hearing aid users. It aims to advise on cleaning and re-tubing ear moulds.
Retubing your earmould
Your ear mould comes with a tube in place which connects the ear mould to the hearing aid. This tube requires replacing every four to six months as it hardens and discolours, reducing the quality of the sound travelling through it. The tube can also become blocked with wax or dry skin, replacing the tube may be the only way to completely clear this.
Tubes can be replaced by the Audiology Department repairs service and at local hearing help sessions (see the leaflet ‘Local Hearing Help Sessions’). However, you may wish to re-tube the ear moulds yourself.
Re-tubing your own ear moulds saves the time and expense of attending a hospital repair session or going to a local hearing help session.
Instructions for re-tubing your ear mould
- Ask Audiology or Cambridgeshire Hearing Help for some tubes. Using a pair of scissors taper the edge of one end of the new tube. Do not cut too close to the bend.
- Pull the ear mould off your hearing aid, then pull the old tubing out of the ear mould. It may help to use a pair of pliers.
- Thread the new tube into your ear mould from the outside. Tubing threaders can be purchased to help with this; see reference section for details.
- Pull the tubing through the ear mould so that the remaining tubing is facing upwards at approximately a 90 degree angle.
Using a razor blade or pair of scissors carefully cut the tapered end of the tube so that it is flush with the end of the ear mould.
Adjusting the length of the tube
Having put the new tube in place, you will need to cut it to the correct length. This is also necessary if you have received a new ear mould in the post.
- Once the new tube is in place, you need to cut the excess tubing to the appropriate length for your ear. Position the mould correctly in your ear and place the hearing aid over your ear in its normal position.
- Mark the position where the end of the hearing aid (the hook) overlaps the tubing, leaving enough tubing for the two to fit together comfortably. Note that you may need a mirror or another person to help you do this.
- Remove the ear mould from your ear and cut the tube where you have marked it.
- Finally, reattach the ear mould to the hearing aid. It is now ready for use.
- If you do not have anyone to help you measure the length of the new tube, then an alternative is to hold the old piece of tube against the new one and cut it to the same length.
Cleaning your ear mould
It is important to keep your ear mould clean to ensure that you get the best sound from the hearing aid and that you don’t develop ear infections. If you detach the mould from the hearing aid it can be washed in warm soapy water, but it must be dried thoroughly before it is reconnected. ‘Ear mould puffers’ can help to clear moisture from the tube (see the reference section for catalogues from which these can be purchased). You can also clean your ear mould with antibacterial wipes after use to stop the spread of infection. If you do develop an ear infection, you should not wear your ear mould. You should clean it thoroughly before using it again once the infection has cleared.
Ear mould tubing threaders and other helpful accessories can be purchased online through Connevans (01737 907438), or ask the Audiology Department for a Hearing Aid Accessories leaflet. You may also be able to purchase items in a high street audiology shop (such as Boots or Specsavers) or via other online shops (for example Amazon).
For details of Cambridgeshire Hearing Help you can visit their website or phone 01223 416141.
We are smoke-free
Smoking is not allowed anywhere on the hospital campus. For advice and support in quitting, contact your GP or the free NHS stop smoking helpline on 0800 169 0 169.
Help accessing this information in other formats is available. To find out more about the services we provide, please visit our patient information help page (see link below) or telephone 01223 256998. www.cuh.nhs.uk/contact-us/accessible-information/
Cambridge University Hospitals
NHS Foundation Trust
Hills Road, Cambridge
Telephone +44 (0)1223 245151