Hearing aid accessories to help you get out and live

Reading Time: 5 minutes
"by " Albert Stein

It is amazing how the world of sound comes back when you get hearing aids. But it doesn’t stop there – there are different accessories to help you gain their full potential.

People who get hearing aids nowadays are more active than the typical wearer of the past. Whether you want to go mountain biking, horse riding, or just out for a gentle jog, hearing aids don’t need to stop you. 
However, it’s important to keep your hearing aids safe – no one wants them to fall off and get damaged or lost. And taking them off entirely is not ideal, as you are left with diminished hearing during your activity. 
Fortunately, hearing aid safety lines can attach to your hearing aids and then clip to your collar. These keep your hearing aids securely attached to you – even if they do come off your ears – so you don’t lose your hearing aids or risk them getting damaged. 

Perhaps you’ve seen this sign before – it’s an ear with a ‘T’ next to it. You often see them in public places like theatres, cinemas, lecture halls, museums, art galleries, and churches. It simply means is there’s a teleloop system installed in the building.
A teleloop system transmits sound directly to your hearing aids. This means that the sound of the film or public speaker will be picked up via a microphone in the building and then played directly into your ears. However, you will need a hearing aid with a telecoil capability installed. Ask your nearest hearing care expert to find out more.

Many modern hearing aids use Bluetooth® technology to connect to smartphones, allowing you to make phone calls and hear the other person’s voice directly in your hearing aids. Effectively, your hearing aids become a hands-free headset. This works for video calls too, like skype and facetime, so you can see the person you are talking to and hear them at the same time.  
Some hearing aids are known as ‘Made for iPhone’ hearing aids, which connect directly to an iPhone without an intermediate streaming device. For these, you simply speak into the phone’s speaker. 

For other types of smartphone, you need a streamer, which typically hangs around your neck. This contains a microphone that captures your voice. Modern streaming/hands-free devices are more discreet, and clip on to your clothing. 

Some hearing aids give you the option to adjust them while you are wearing them. They typically have a small button that allows you to change the programme, such as when you move to a more noisy environment. Some also have volume wheels. 
However, a remote control allows you to make these adjustments more discreetly, using a small control that’s about the same size as a car key. 
If you have a smartphone, you might be interested in a hearing aid that you can remotely control via an app. Many modern hearing aids offer app control. 

While hearing aids vastly improve most situations, occasionally they need a little extra help. In situations such as when someone is presenting something in a large space, or you’re talking to someone in a very noisy environment, you may benefit from a remote microphone. 
You simply clip this device to the clothing of whoever you need to hear clearly, and their speech is transmitted directly to your hearing aids.