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Man wearing hearing aids happily using a cell phone.

Contemporary cell phones have become much clearer and more reliable nowadays. But sometimes, it will still be hard to hear what the individual on the other end is saying. And for people who have hearing loss, it can be particularly challenging.

There must be an easy solution for that, right? Can’t you make use of some hearing aids to help you hear phone conversations more clearly? Well, that’s not… exactly… how it works. It turns out that, while hearing aids can make in person conversations much easier to handle, there are some challenges associated with phone-based conversations. But there are certainly a few things you can do to make your phone conversations more successful.

Phone calls and hearing aids don’t always work effectively together – here’s why

Hearing loss generally isn’t immediate. It’s not like somebody simply turns down the overall volume on your ears. You tend to lose bits and pieces at a time. It’s likely that you won’t even notice you have hearing loss and your brain will try to utilize contextual and visual clues to compensate.

When you talk on the phone, you no longer have these visual clues. Your Brain lacks the information it needs to fill in the blanks. You only hear parts and pieces of the other individual’s voice which sounds muffled and distorted.

Hearing aids can be helpful – here’s how

Hearing aids will help with this. Many of those missing pieces can be filled in by using hearing aids. But there are a few distinctive accessibility and communication troubles that occur from using hearing aids while talking on the phone.

For example, putting your hearing aids near a phone speaker can create some harsh speaker-to-speaker interference. This can lead to some awkward gaps in conversation because you can’t hear really well.

Tips to augment the phone call experience

So what measures can be taken to help make your hearing aids function better with a phone? the majority of hearing specialists will recommend a few tips:

  • Stream your phone to your hearing aid via Bluetooth. Hold on, can hearing aids connect to smartphones? Yes, they can! This means you’ll be able to stream phone calls directly to your hearing aids (if your hearing aids are Bluetooth capable). This can get rid of feedback and make your phone calls a bit more private, so it’s a good place to begin if you’re having trouble on your phone.
  • Download a video call app: Face-timing somebody or jumping onto a video chat can be a very good way to help you hear better. The sound won’t be louder or more clear, but at least you’ll have that visual information back. And once more, this type of contextual information will be substantially helpful.
  • Try to take your phone calls in a quiet location. It will be a lot easier to hear the voice on the other end if there’s less background sound. Your hearing aids will be much more efficient by lowering background noise.
  • Don’t conceal your hearing trouble from the person you’re talking to: It’s ok to admit if you’re having difficulty! Many individuals will be fine moving the discussion to text message or email or video calls (or simply being a little extra patient).
  • Try using speakerphone to conduct the majority of your phone conversations: Most feedback can be avoided this way. There might still be some distortion, but your phone conversation should be mostly understandable (while maybe not necessarily private). The best way to keep your phone and your hearing aid away from each other is by using speakerphone.
  • Hearing aids aren’t the only assistive hearing device you can get: There are other assistive devices and services that can help you hear better during a phone conversation (including many text-to-type services).

Finding the correct set of solutions will depend on what you use your phone for, how frequently you’re on the phone, and what your overall communication requirements are like. Your ability to once again enjoy phone conversations will be made possible with the right approach.

If you need more guidance on how to use hearing aids with your phone, call us, we can help.

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.
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