Today’s hearing aid wearers tend to be more active than in decades past. Manufacturers have noticed, and developers have taken these changes into account in designing newer devices. Now, whether you want to go mountain biking, horseback riding or just out for a jog, hearing aids don’t stop you.
However, it’s important to keep your hearing aids safe. No one wants to lose or damage these important investments in your hearing. Hearing aid experts understand that you can get the most out of physical activities if you can hear well, especially with your hearing aids. That’s why there are new ways to use hearing aids in varied settings.
If you enjoy biking, running or skiing, hearing aid safety lines can attach to your hearing aids and then clip to your collar. These keep your hearing aids securely attached to you – so even if they fall out of place, you won’t lose your hearing aids or risk damaging them.
Have you seen this sign before? It’s an ear sometimes with a ‘T’ next to it. You may find them in public places like movie theaters, lecture halls, museums, art galleries and even some churches. It indicates that there is a teleloop system installed in the location and if your hearing aid has the right capability, you can link to it to hear announcements or performances.
A teleloop system transmits sound directly to your hearing aids. This means that the sound of the film or public speaker will be picked up via a microphone in the building and then played directly into your ears. Many modern hearing aids include loop system-capabilities. Ask your hearing care expert to find out if your hearing aids can have this feature.
Many modern hearing aids use Bluetooth® technology to connect to smartphones, allowing you to make calls and hear the other person’s voice streamed directly in your hearing aids. Effectively, this turns your hearing aids in a hands-free headset. This works for video calls too, so when you use services like Skype or FaceTime, you can catch every intonation of your loved one and see them at the same time.
Some hearing aids are known as Made for iPhone hearing aids, which connect directly to an iPhone without an intermediate streaming device. For these, you simply speak into the phone’s speaker and the sound is automatically piped into your hearing aids.
For other types of smartphones, you may need a streamer, which typically hangs around your neck. This contains a microphone that captures your voice. Modern streaming/hands-free devices are more discreet, and clip on to your clothing.
Some hearing aids give you the option to adjust them while you are wearing them, often with a small button or volume wheel on a remote control. This gives you the chance to change the program immediately, such as when you move to a noisier environment. A remote control allows you to make these adjustments discreetly, using a small control that’s about the same size as a car key.
If you have a smartphone, there are various ways to control your hearing aid via an app. Some apps help you not only with sounds you expect, like voices or music, but beep when your batteries run low, if your doorbell rings, when you get a text message or someone posts on your Facebook page. In fact, the options seem almost limitless.
While hearing aids vastly improve most situations, occasionally they need a little extra help. Sometimes – especially in a large space, or you’re talking to someone in a very noisy environment – you may benefit from a remote microphone.
These are easy to use. You simply clip this device to the clothing of whomever you need to hear clearly, and their speech is transmitted directly to your hearing aids.