Poor room acoustics, a greater distance to the speaker, and background noise can all interfere with the quality of hearing aid sound. In these situations, hiring the volume in isn’t going to make things clearer. Assistive listening devices (ALD) allows hard of hearing people to enjoy various acoustical environments without distracting background noise and acoustical reverberations. Today's assistive listening devices are smaller, easier to use, and offer a better filtering system for unwanted noises.
Assistive listening devices are helpful in many situations, but it's not always obvious when to use one.
Why use an Assistive Listening Device?
Types of Assistive Listening Devices
When a listening environment poses challenges for hearing aids, such as background noise or greater distance to the speaker, an auditory assistive listening device can help bridge the gap. An assistive listening device (ALD) uses assistive listening systems (ALS) to convey sound, making the sound source clear. Assistive listening systems include Bluetooth®, FM (frequency modulation), and Induction Loops. In choosing an ALD, you should know which assistive listening system your hearing aids most easily support.
Assistive listening devices used to make sounds clearer typically consist of three parts, a microphone, transmitter, and a receiver.
Microphone: With many ALD's a microphone is part of a transmitter that is placed near the speaker or sound source.
Transmitters: A transmitter captures the sound from a microphone placed near a speaker, television, or computer.
Receivers: Receivers collect sound from the transmitter and relay it directly to the hearing aids.
Popular Assistive Listening Devices
Phonak Com Pilot-- Phonak ComPilot works with hearing aids to enhance sound and connect your hearing aid to wireless systems, TVs, MP3 players and phones. It had a built in remote control and is the first accessory to offer the benefit of spoken messages, making it easier than ever to interact with your hearing aids.
Widex Dex Accessories-- DEX for television helps with unnecessary delays and echoes that can sometimes happen when listening to television. The DEX system transmits wirelessly to hearing aids without delay and with no echo. It allows up to ten hours of use without recharging.
Oticon's Amigo-- Noise, distance to speaker, poor acoustics can all be overcome with the extra boost from Oticon's Amigo and assistive listening device designed for classrooms and living rooms or smaller office settings. This FM system bridges the distance between the speaker and the hearer by improving signal to noise ratio.
Assistive listening devices serve an important function, allowing people with hearing loss the same accessibility to information and communication as people with average hearing. 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!