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Assistive Devices and more

CT Chapters of HLAA
successful use of hearing aids
Hearing Loss Info: A thru Z
New technology
Our purpose
Captioned Films / Plays in CT
Learning About Hearing Aids
List of PREMIUM hearing aids
Assistive Devices and more

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Technology has advanced to an unbelievable point. Those who are Deaf or Hard
of Hearing often experience several limitations in accessing technology in
their everyday life. The deaf or hard of hearing community has a difficult
time to communicate and perceive information as compared to hearing
individuals. Thus, these individuals often rely on visual and tactile
mediums for receiving and communicating information. The use of assistive
technology and devices provides this community with various solutions to
their problems by providing higher sound (for those who are hard of
hearing), tactile feedback, visual cues and improved technology access.
Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing utilize a variety of assistive
technologies that provide them with improved accessibility to information in
numerous environments. Most devices either provide amplified sound or
alternate ways to access information through vision and/or vibration. These
technologies can be grouped into four general categories: Hearing
Technology, alerting devices, and communication support.

Hearing Technology

Hearing Technology can broadly be defined as any device utilized for
improving the level of sound available to a listener. Hearing technology can
further be divided into two general subcategories of Assistive Listening
Devices or Personal Amplification. The following describes the various
assistive devices and how they are used

Assistive Listening Devices (ALD) can be utilized by individuals or large
groups of people and can typically be accessed without the support of
specific personnel. These devices typically are used to improve the
signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) in any given situation. All ALDs utilize a
transmitter that sends a person's voice or other sound source to a receiver
that distributes the sound evenly throughout a room such as in theaters and
churches or directly to an individual. We will briefly discuss and show how
sound is transmitted in three primary ways:

Induction Loop

Induction loop systems utilize electromagnetic energy to transmit the
signal. These systems can cover a small area with a loop placed under a rug
or may be permanently installed within the walls or ceiling of larger areas
like theaters, auditoriums, or churches.


Frequency Modulation

With Frequency Modulation (FM) systems, the sound is transmitted on a
specific frequency or channel similar to a radio. The Federal
Communications Commission (FCC) has designated specific frequencies for
these types of systems. There are now small receivers than can be connected
directly to a person's hearing aids through Direct Audio Input (DAI). Any
time an FM system is coupled to a hearing aid, special settings and
connections are required from an audiologist. Sometimes when several FM
based systems are used in the same building, there can be problems with
cross over between rooms and channels.


These systems utilize light waves to transmit sound from the transmitter to
a special light sensitive receiver. The signal can be broadcast to a whole
room through speakers or a person who wears an individual receiver. There
must be a clear line of connection between the transmitter and receiver so
that the light signal is not interrupted. The benefit of infrared systems is
that they only work in the room where the transmitter and receiver are
located resulting in significantly fewer issues with cross-over. These
systems can be sensitive to external light sources or interfering objects.

Blue Tooth

A streamer can connect your wireless hearing aids to many devices. ... If
there is a desire to connect with a mobile phone, tablet, computer, music
player or other Bluetooth-enabled device, the hearing care provider will
recommend a set of wireless hearing aids and if appropriate, a compatible

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