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Improve Hearing This Year

Leesa Burke, MA, FAAA's picture
Improve Hearing This Year
Improve Hearing This Year

Last year I wrote about resolutions and perhaps choosing better hearing as one of yours! This year, I’m writing about some lower tech interventions for hearing loss that might be useful for any person with hearing concerns.

For those of you with a smart phone, one of my personal favorites is an app called Hear You Now. Grab a set of headphones or earbuds, plug them into your iPhone, and now your phone is a personal amplifier! This is great to use with a hospitalized elder, whose hearing aids are being kept safe at home. I’m sure by the time this is written there are many other apps that have a similar purpose.

A captioned phone is a great idea for people whose hearing loss keeps them from having quality phone conversations. The listener can read the caller’s words on a small screen!  Do an Internet search for captioned telephones and see the many options that exist for this technology. For those with measured hearing loss, most states have a program that distributes amplified or captioned telephones for free, or at reduced cost, to qualified users. Ask your audiologist about the program in your state.

Having trouble hearing TV? A simple, wireless set of headphones can connect to your TV so that the audio signal is brought directly to your ears.  Take to your Internet browser to search for wireless TV listening and you’ll find many options available.

The almost universal complaint of most hearing impaired persons, whether they use hearing aids or not, is not hearing well in the presence of background noise, like at a table in a busy restaurant. Again, ask your audiologist for solutions to this problem. Yes, hearing aids will help, but for a lot of people, adding a wireless device to your hearing aids may help you hear much easier in difficult situations.

If you have yet to get YOUR hearing checked, embrace the spirit of a new year—make it the year you get your hearing tested! If you live in the Boston-area, contact our Audiology Clinic at 617-363-8539 to schedule an appointment. 

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Clinical Supervisor, Audiology at Hebrew SeniorLife

Audiologist Leesa Burke, MA, FAAA, is a Fellow in the American Academy of Audiology and a member of the Massachusetts Speech, Language and Hearing Association. Her special areas of interest include rehabilitative audiology, assistive listening devices and counseling for the hearing impaired and their families. Ms. Burke has been featured in the Boston Globe's Senior Set on hearing loss.

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