Why Hearing Loops
Many Americans Live with Hearing Loss
According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders[i] “approximately 17 percent (36 million) of American adults report some degree of hearing loss.” With a large population of "Baby Boomers" coming of "age" the use of hearing induction loops is expanding across the U. S. at an exponential rate. Unlike those challenged by mobility or vision loss, people challenged by hearing loss are often an invisible and forgotten minority.
Like electronic computers, magnetic induction loop technology began more than a half century ago, and now is in newly developed forms (with new amplifier and telecoil technologies) along with increasing applications. They have been used in tens of thousands of Scandinavian and British venues for decades. This may be the first time you’re hearing of Hearing Loops but they are quickly spreading across the United States.
Built in Service
In a recent review of hearing aid models, the Hearing Review Products reported that 124 (59%) of 209 hearing aid models—including all 35 in-the-ear models and 29 of 30 conventional behind-the-ear models—come with telecoils. New model cochlear implants also offer telecoils. In many cases the telecoil feature is built in, but has not been activated by the hearing professional. Activating a built-in telecoil is easy and often done free of charge to the end-user. This telecoil receiver transforms the instruments into in-the-ear speakers that deliver sound customized for one’s own hearing loss.
Discreet and Simple
A hearing aid compatible loop system delivers sound that’s customized by one’s hearing aids for one’s own ears. There’s no need to get up, seek out, and wear conspicuous equipment (which few people with hearing loss take the initiative to do). Additionally, the sound is contained in one’s ear, without bothering others nearby. There is no need to juggle between headsets and hearing aids (during, say, a worship service). And there are no hygienic concerns about putting in or on one’s ear what has been around others’ ears.