Do you like piña coladas and getting caught in the rain?* Well if you do, but have been worried that getting your hearing aid wet would stop it working, the new coating on today’s hearing aids is for you. We explain about IP68 hearing aids and why it’s important for you.
Ingress protection standards
Today’s hearing aids are built to meet specific European standards called Ingress Protection or IP ratings. These ratings were originally developed by the International Electrotechnical Commission and define the levels of sealing effectiveness of electrical enclosures, such as hearing aids, against dust, dirt and moisture or to speak more plainly, the IP rating tells us how robust our hearing aid is.
The letters IP are followed by 2 digits: the first digit defines the robustness against dust and the second the robustness against moisture.
IP68 hearing aids
The latest hearing aids undergo rigorous testing to gain an IP rating. Since 2016 most hearing aids have a rating of IP68 which means that they can withstand dust, dirt and sand and being submerged in water to a maximum depth of 1.5 metres for 30 minutes and will continue to work.
Unfortunately, IP68 does not mean that the hearing aid can be worn while swimming but it does mean that it is protected should it be accidentally dropped into water or worn in the shower.
The practical daily importance of the IP68 hearing aid rating is to protect the device, that is of course sitting against the skin, from sweat and from getting caught in the rain.
IP68 hearing aids – where to find out more
*From Escape (aka The Piña Colada Song), by Rupert Holmes, 1979.