If you need equipment to help overcome problems as a result of your hearing loss, we will provide help and advice about your options.
We will also advise you where you can go for equipment that you may find useful and we may provide some equipment directly to you.
Some common problems related to hearing loss, and possible solutions are:
Hearing conversations in a room
If you experience difficulty hearing people talking in the same room then you may benefit from a loop system in your home.
A loop system is designed to assist a person with a hearing aid to hear more clearly in a room by switching their hearing aid to the 'T' position. This arranges for the sound they hear to come from electromagnetic waves from the loop rather than sound waves direct to the aid microphone.
The loop is a kind of radio aerial, which transmits the sound signal to anyone situated within it. The sound heard will be clearer and free from distracting background sounds and room echoes that get in the way.
Loops can be used in three different environments: in the home, at a counter and in public places.
Hearing the alarm clock
Alarm clocks for Deaf people come in a wide range of styles and sizes and some look very similar to standard alarm clocks. But unlike standard alarm clocks, they alert you to the alarm by vibrating or producing a flashing light. Many have a sound alarm as well, a feature which can be useful if you have a partner who is hearing.
Hearing the door bell
If you are hard of hearing, it may be difficult for you to hear your doorbell ring. There are various types of doorbells available on the open market including loud extension bells, doorbells that make your table lamp flash and doorbells that flash or dim the house lights.
Hearing people in meetings or classrooms
An alternative to the loop system is the infra-red system. This is a wireless assistive listening system that can be used by Deaf or hard of hearing individuals or groups to better hear what is being said in meetings, classrooms, workshops, and other situations. Infrared systems use invisible light to transmit sound signals.
Using the telephone
Some people find it difficult or impossible to communicate by ordinary telephone, for example people with a hearing impairment or severe speech impairment. One solution is for them to use a textphone, also known as a minicom.
A minicom allows a person to type their message and read the response on a display screen. Calls to a minicom can be made either direct from another minicom or through the BT relay service, Typetalk, on 0800 7311 888. Calls cannot be made direct from an ordinary telephone to a textphone or minicom.
In addition, telephone companies such as BT make specially adapted telephone handsets for people who are hard of hearing. Such facilities on a specially adapted phone might include a flashing light when the phone rings, compatibility with hearing aids, an adjustable ringer volume and speech amplification.