Monday, October 17, 2011

Hearing Aid Battery Safety

My brand of hearing aid batteries.
Wearing hearing aids goes beyond just having something stuffed in your ear all the time and feeling like you are part cyborg. It can also bring a lot of clutter with it, from hearing aid batteries to Dry n Store units on your nightstand and special alarm clocks that vibrate the bed.

I have come up with a nice tidy way to keep my hearing aid packages together (and all it took was an Altoids tin and some felt!), but I admit I'm not always super careful about disposing of my hearing aid batteries. They sometimes end up at the bottom of my purse and between my car seats - not necessarily in the trash where they belong.

However, I plan to be more careful about my batteries. This blog post from the US Consumer Product Safety Commission highlights some of the dangers surrounding "button batteries," found in hearing aids, watches, remote controls, and other small devices. According to the blog post, injuries related to button batteries have increased sevenfold since 1985. Children can accidentally swallow the batteries, and elderly people or people with poor vision can mistake them for pills. Once inside the body they can cause chemical burns or choking. I would imagine the same problems exist for animals in the home, especially since pets sometimes like to get into the trash.

With that in mind I think it is a good idea to be careful about disposing of hearing aid batteries. According to what I've read online, to be safe, button batteries should be recycled by a hazardous waste recycling program, because they contain mercury. This site can help you find a center to recycle them near you.

8 comments:

  1. Funny you should mention disposing of batteries...I save them for a while in a box marked "dead batteries" and take them to a battery store for disposal. I just found a few dozen at the bottom of a drawer...I had forgotten about them but wondered why I had so few for disposal!!!

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  2. Megan,

    We've just discovered your blog this evening. You do wonderful work. I hope you don't mind if we share links to some of your posts on our Facebook and Twitter pages. Your practical, down-to-Earth advice is sure to be useful to some of the people we serve.

    On behalf of NJ Audiology, keep up the great work.

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  3. In the Altoids box [I am using an old Sucrets box] I threw in a little packet of silica gel. I figure it can't hurt.

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  4. Over here in the uk, because I have my hearing aids from the NHS, I have to save my dead batteries, then exchange my old packs for new ones.

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  5. You can get free hearing aid batteries here. Just fill the form and get free batteries every month.

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  6. Hearing aid batteries normally last 7-14 days when the hearing aid is used 16 hours per day. Performance will vary depending on the style and type of hearing aid technology you are using. Hearing aids come in different sizes and each battery is coded by color. Don’t throw your used hearing aid batteries in the trash and never in a fire because used batteries are recycled. Thanks a lot.
    Digital Hearing Aids

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  7. Without hearing aid batteries, our hearing aids will be useless. For most of the clinics out there, many offers free hearing aid batteries to their patients. Your posts brings an important reminder and message to people who wears hearing aids. Proper battery disposal is a must, although most of us take it for granted since, its just a small piece.

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  8. You're right, dead hearing aid batteries should be disposed properly to keep the harmful chemicals from causing pollution. You can keep the packaging so that you can put them back when not in use and avoid misplacing them.

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