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Assistive Listening Devices Help Senior Citizens Stay Connected

Hearing Loss is the number one disability among senior citizens. The loss of hearing can happen so slowly it can go undetected for several years. As many people get older they have difficulty hearing and understanding especially in particular listening situations such as:

(1) in the presence of background noise

(2) listening in groups

(3) listening to TV or radio and

(4) hearing on the telephone.

It's important that people know that there is technology that can help, and what technology is available. Devices such as hearing aids, personal listening systems and amplified/captioned telephones are stronger and clearer today than ever before. Seniors are often wary of trying something new, but they don't have to be. The first step is to find a hearing care professional that provides a trial period. In addition, make sure you understand what your obligation will be at the end of the trial period. Hearing devices today do not have the unflattering look of the past. Seniors should keep in mind that everyone has something on their ear these days … Bluetooth, iPod and iPhone ear buds, and the list goes on. Hearing aids are now smaller and stronger, have wireless convertibility, can include FM systems and remote control capabilities as well as interact with smart cell phones. Sounds techy but it's not - a reputable audiologist or hearing aid dealer can help make the experience easier. Personal Listening Systems or amplifiers can be more economical and simple to use. Personal amplifiers are designed to help people hear better in small group settings, one on one conversation, on the telephone, driving or riding in a car and watching TV. Captioned telephones have big screens, can print text and amplify up to 50 dB. Text telephones help people who had given up on using the telephone to re-engage with family, friends and life. Plus there are programs that can help an individual get a Captel or CaptionCall text telephone for FREE. All of these devices can make seniors more aware of their environment as well as reconnect with community. Today's listening devices can assist a person to hear better in all kinds of settings.

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The Center for Hearing & Deaf Services has over 90 years of experience and can help find the hearing technology that supports most listening life styles and satisfies most budgets. Call (412) 281-1375 for help improving your quality of life.

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