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Posted on Friday, May 17, 2013

Hearing Aid Advice

Couple on beach relaxes knowing the top travel tips for hearing aids.

Hearing aids help to bridge the gap with communication and makes every day interactions easier, but there can be challenges when someone with hearing loss travels. Advice on how to travel with hearing aids is important to keep your vacation hassle free and your investment in hearing aid technology safe. Though there is a strong push for equal access for deaf and hard of hearing people, there are a few key pieces of hearing aid advice that can help to make the journey easier.

Before you go, remember to pick up the essentials for cleaning your hearing aids a brush, cloth, and wax kit.

Hearing Aid Advice: Traveling by Plane/Airport
• Security—there is no need to remove your hearing aid when going through screening check points. If you need to interact with security make them aware of your hearing loss.
• Security requires that you send your assistive listening devices (ALD) through x-ray screening. X-rays will not hurt the device or for that matter your hearing aid. Occasionally scanners will cause excess noise in your hearing aids, so as a general rule when passing through turn down the volume.
• Request that alerts like gate changes be sent to your cell phone.
• Despite the warning to, “Turn off all electronic devices” there is no need to turn off your hearing aids when flying. Unless, of course, the pressure in the plane causes you discomfort.

Stock Up—if your hearing aid requires them, bring extra tubes and unless your batteries are rechargeable make sure you bring lots of batteries.

Hearing Aid Advice: Traveling by Train
• Tell a gate attendant that you have hearing loss in case there is a gate change.
• Exercise visual caution in and around train tracks.
• If your hearing aids do not adapt automatically to environmental situations, remember to turn down the volume when boarding the train until you are safely onboard.

Protect— An inexpensive but good investment is a waterproof hat or an umbrella. Dri-aid kit is also useful for trips to help reduce excess moisture and keep hearing aids functioning properly, and you can also purchase a small hearing aid dehumidifier at most well stocked pharmacies.

Hearing Aid Advice: Traveling by Car
• If traveling by car, consider purchasing an extra wide rearview mirror. There are times when a speeding ambulance or police car will go unheard, but can be seen through a large mirror.
• Consider a portable ALD to make phone and radio listening more comfortable or to make it easier to listen to passengers or people in rest stops.
• Consider installing an induction loop for your car. This can help you hear radio, phone, and people better when traveling.

Insurance--Talk to your audiologist about purchasing insurance for your hearing aids in the event they are lost or stolen. Hearing aid insurance, much like trip insurance, helps to give you peace of mind when traveling.

Hearing Aid Advice: Hotel Rooms
• Make sure to inform the hotel that you are hearing impaired, so that you can be given a room that meets your needs. Hotels are required to provide rooms accessible for those with hearing loss, so they are sure to get visual notifications for alarms, phones, and doors.
• Keep your room key away from your hearing aid as your hearing aid can demagnetize the key!

Traveling is a hectic, fast paced experience. Often a person with hearing loss finds themselves in difficult listening situations trying to navigate through a sea of people. The most important hearing aid advice when traveling is to clean your hearing aid or get required maintenance before you go. Your audiologist can make sure your hearing aids are in top working order before you start on your journey.

If you'd like to learn more, see your hearing health provider. If you need help finding a hearing health provider click HERE to be connected with the largest network of trusted hearing health professionals in the nation!

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