Man wearing hearing aids happily using a cell phone.

Nowadays, the cellular phone network is much more dependable (and there’s a lot less static involved). But in some cases, it will still be challenging to hear what the individual on the other end is saying. And for individuals who have hearing loss, it can be particularly difficult.

Now, you might be thinking: there’s an easy fix for that, right? Can’t you make use of some hearing aids to help you understand phone conversations more clearly? Actually, it doesn’t work precisely that way. Even though hearing aids can help with conversations, with phone conversations it can be a bit more challenging. But there are a few 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 normally progresses gradually. It isn’t like somebody just turns down the overall volume on your ears. You tend to lose bits and pieces over time. This can make it difficult to even detect when you have hearing loss, especially because your brain tries very hard to fill in the gaps with context clues and other visual information.

When you have phone conversations, you no longer have these visual clues. Your Brain doesn’t have the info it needs to fill in the blanks. There’s only a very distorted voice and you only make out bits and pieces of the spectrum of the other person’s voice.

How hearing aids can help

Hearing aids can help with this. They’ll especially help your ears fill in a lot of those missing pieces. But talking on the phone while wearing hearing aids can introduce some accessibility issues.

Feedback can happen when your hearing aids come close to a phone, for example. This can result in some awkward gaps in conversation because you can’t hear very well.

Bettering your ability to hear phone conversations

So, what can you do to manage the challenges of utilizing a phone with hearing aids? the majority of hearing specialists will endorse a few tips:

  • 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 when you’re having a phone conversation (and this includes numerous text-to-type services).
  • Download a video call app: Face-timing someone or hopping onto a video chat can be a very good way to help you hear better. It isn’t that the sound quality is somehow better, it’s that your brain has access to all of that fantastic visual information again. And this can help you put context to what’s being talked about.
  • You can use your Bluetooth function on your hearing aid to stream to your phone. Yes, modern hearing aids can connect to your cellphone using Bluetooth! This means that if your hearing aids are Bluetooth enabled, phone calls can be streamed directly to your phone. If you’re having trouble using your phone with your hearing aid, a good place to begin getting rid of feedback would be switching to Bluetooth.
  • Consider using speakerphone to carry out most of your phone conversations: Most feedback can be prevented this way. There may still be some distortion, but your phone conversation should be mostly understandable (if not necessarily private). Knowing how to hold the phone better with hearing aids (that is, away from your ears) is crucial, and speakerphone is how you accomplish this!
  • Don’t conceal your hearing problems from the individual you’re speaking with: If phone calls are difficult for you, it’s okay to admit that! You might simply need to be a little extra patient, or you may want to consider using text, email, or video chat.
  • Find a quiet setting to carry out your phone calls. The less noise around you, the easier it will be to pick out the voice of the person you’re speaking with. Your hearing aids will be much more effective by reducing background noise.

Depending on your general hearing needs, how frequently you use the phone, and what you use your phone for, the appropriate set of solutions will be accessible. Your ability to once again enjoy phone conversations will be made possible with the correct approach.

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

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