Talking on the phone can be life’s delights. It keeps you connected with the family and friends. Despite, if you are living with hearing loss, you may find it hard to understand phone conversations.
Cochlear Implanted with surgery, and it works in a different way. It transforms sound into electrical stimulation for the auditory nerve.
Using a phone with cochlear implants
The telephone is important for communication at home, in the workplaces and socially. Many cochlear implant users are able to use telephones. Practicing the listening skills and using the correct technique and equipment can help to make the best use of the telephones.
Choosing a mobile phone
Mobile phones vary in how well they work with a cochlear implant. Everyone’s experience is different.
The best thing is that when selecting a mobile phone, try out the different phones.
For use, a telecoil with the mobile phone, make sure to test its compatibility too.
Some features that you might want to look for when purchasing a new phone:
- Volume control
- Caller Id
- Integrated answering machine
- A high-quality speakerphone
- Integrated telecoil
The federal communication commission defines the compatibility of hearing aids for the wireless device. Before buying the cell phone must test that the phone complies with FCC’s definition.
Cell phone with microphone 3 or microphone 4 can fulfill the requirements of the FCC and generate less interference for cochlear implant user. M4 is the better of the two ratings.
Cell phone with telecoil 3 and telecoil 4 can provide the requirements of FCC. They are also usable with the telecoil in the cochlear implant sound processor. T4 is the better of the two ratings.
The cell phone which rated both M4 and T4 provides the best compatibility for hearing loss user with hearing technology. MED-EL’s OPUS 2 processors have a built-in telecoil.
Analog phones provide better sound quality and telecoil compatibility. Extended range analog cordless phones, such as 2.4 GHz phones, usually offer a clearer signal than those which are in the 900MHz range. Avoid purchasing cordless phones labeled “digital”, if you want to use a telecoil with the phone.
Other things if want to try include:
- Directly connecting the telephone to speech processor with an accessory adaptor cable.
- Using the telecoil function on a processor with a phone.
- Use a neck loop with Bluetooth phone and telecoil.
Using the telephone in a telecoil setting for cochlear implant users
While using a telecoil-equipped phone, audio is delivered directly to the speech processor that is in telecoil mode. You should position the handset slightly lower on your ear and further back than the position suggested for normal use. A telecoil neck loop is connected directly to the phone through the headphone socket.
You can also directly connect your speech processor to the telephone headphone socket using an accessory adaptor cable.
All processors have telecoil ability but some may need to have a program reserved at the clinic to allow for telecoil use. You can ask your clinical specialist about this.