Man wearing hearing aids happily using a cell phone.

Contemporary cell phones have become much clearer and more dependable 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 especially difficult.

There must be an easy solution for that, right? Can’t you make use of some hearing aids to help you hear phone conversations better? Actually, it doesn’t work precisely like that. It turns out that, while hearing aids can make face-to-face conversations much easier to handle, there are some challenges associated with phone-based conversations. But there are some guidelines for phone calls with hearing aids that can help you get a bit more from your next conversation.

Why hearing aids and phone calls don’t always play nice

Hearing loss usually progresses slowly. It’s not like somebody simply turns down the general volume on your ears. It has a tendency to go a little at a time. It’s likely that you won’t even detect you have hearing loss and your brain will attempt to utilize contextual and visual clues to compensate.

When you talk on the phone, you no longer have these visual clues. There’s no added information for your brain to work with. There’s only a very distorted voice and you only make out bits and pieces of the spectrum of the other individual’s voice.

Hearing aids can help – here’s how

This can be improved by wearing hearing aids. Many of those missing pieces can be filled in with hearing aids. But talking on the phone with hearing aids can introduce some accessibility issues.

Feedback can happen when your hearing aids come near a phone, for example. This can lead to some uncomfortable gaps in conversation because you can’t hear that well.

Bettering your ability to hear phone conversations

So, what can you do to overcome the obstacles of utilizing a phone with hearing aids? Well, there are several tips that the majority of hearing specialists will recommend:

  • Put your phone in speaker mode as frequently as possible: This will prevent the most severe feedback. Your phone conversations might not be very private, but even though there still may be a little distortion, you should be able to better make out the voice on the other end. Knowing how to better hold your phone with hearing aids (that is, away from your ears) is critical, and speakerphone is how you accomplish this!
  • Download a video call app: You might have an easier time distinguishing phone conversations on a video call. The sound won’t be louder or clearer, but at least you will have that visual information back. And again, this kind of contextual information will be greatly helpful.
  • Be sincere with the person you’re talking to on the phone: It’s all right to admit if you’re having difficulties! You might just need to be a little more patient, or you might want to think about using text, email, or video chat.
  • Connect your phone to your hearing aid using Bluetooth. Yes, contemporary hearing aids can connect to your smartphone using Bluetooth! This means you’ll be able to stream phone calls directly to your hearing aids (if your hearing aids are Bluetooth enabled). This can get rid of feedback and make your phone calls a little more private, so it’s a practical place to start if you’re having trouble on your phone.
  • Try to take your phone calls in a quiet area. It will be much easier to hear the voice on the other end if there’s less noise. If you limit background noise during phone conversations your hearing aids will perform so much better.
  • Hearing aids aren’t the only assistive hearing device you can use: There are other assistive devices and services that can help you hear better during a phone conversation (and this includes numerous text-to-type services).

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

Contact us for some help and advice on how to best utilize your phone and hearing aids together.

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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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