Much like changing your car’s oil, replacing the head of your electric toothbrush, or putting a protective case on your phone, there are easy steps you can take to maximize the lifespan and effectiveness of your Cochlear™ Nucleus® 7 Sound Processor.
Meet Marty, a Nucleus 7 recipient and Cochlear volunteer with plenty of experience taking care of her sound processor.
Marty was implanted in 2011. She began with the Cochlear™ Nucleus® 5 Sound Processor, but recently upgraded to the Nucleus 7 Sound Processor and said it has made a huge difference in her day-to-day life.
“I love the Nucleus 7 Sound Processor,” Marty said. “I put it on SCAN* and just go about my business.”
Over the years, Marty has found many ways to keep her sound processor in top shape—and she’s gracious enough to share them with others.
Check out these five easy tips for extending your sound processor’s lifespan, enabling you to hear the sounds that matter most:
1. Tuck your sound processor into a dry aid kit every night
One of the easiest and most effective ways to protect and maintain your processor is to use a dry aid kit. The Cochlear Store includes several Dry & Store® products that remove moisture and humidity from your processor.
Marty said she stores her processor in the Zephyr dry aid kit every night, which is included in your initial kit.
“Once you press the button, it basically keeps it dried out and aired out for eight hours, a good night’s sleep,” she said.
Along with the dry aid kit, use a disposable Dry-Brik dessicant, which lowers the humidity and captures the moisture released during the drying cycle. Cochlear recommends that you change the Dry-Brik in your dry aid kit once every two months.
2. Change out your microphone cover every 3 months — or as soon as it’s dirty
The Cochlear Microphone Cover, for the Nucleus 7 Sound Processor, is designed to keep dirt and moisture away from your sound processor’s microphones.
It is recommended that microphone covers are changed every 3 months, if they look dirty, or if you notice any loss in sound quality. They may need to be changed more often in humid or dusty environments.
Marty said it’s easy to change out the microphone cover on the Nucleus 7 Sound Processor. In fact, she said the most difficult part is remembering to do it regularly.
She has a helpful tip for anyone else who forgets when they’re supposed to replace it:
“One thing you can do is write it on a calendar or set it up on your smartphone, so every three months you see a message: ‘Replace microphone covers,’” she said. “That’s helpful for me.”
3. Charge your batteries regularly, and carry extras
Marty makes it a habit to cycle between her two rechargeable batteries and put them on the charger as soon as they die, so she’s never left without sound.
She also buys disposable batteries in bulk—about 60 at a time—and stores them in a safe place. To order disposable batteries, please visit www.CochlearBatteries.com or call 833-663-3097.
“I keep them in a drawer in my dresser that’s cool and dark so I know exactly where to get them when I need them,” Marty said.
Before she leaves the house, Marty likes to be prepared. She packs a small, zippered pouch that fits easily in her purse and in the car. Inside she keeps both rechargeable and disposable batteries.
“That way if I’m driving and need to change it, I can. If I’m out somewhere and I need to hear people talking, I’m prepared,” she said. “I always have something with me to make sure I can hear at all times.”
4. Clean your sound processor with a dry microfiber cloth
To keep your processor dry and clean, wipe it down regularly with a non-abrasive microfiber cloth.
Marty said she does this about once a week, to preserve the exterior of her processor, coil, and magnet.
“I use a microfiber cloth like the ones they give you for your computer screen, for glasses, or for a new smartphone,” she said. “When you buy your car or house insurance they’re almost always giving you a cloth like that.”
5. Use a protective case
Finally, Marty said she makes sure to carefully store her sound processor when she’s not wearing it.
“When I’m getting a haircut and I remove my sound processor, or when I go swimming, I’m very careful to store it,” she said. “When I’m travelling or flying, I always make sure to bring the plastic Cochlear Implant case.”