HEARING AID INDUCTION LOOPS Linda Ronis Kass AuD University of Pennsylvania Health System Penn Medicine @ Washington Square
The purpose of a Telecoil Induction Loop, installed as a separate program in your hearing aid(s), is to enable you to hear directly into your aids from a PA system with limited outside noise and improved clarity. In the header is the symbol that will denote either the existence of a Hearing Loop or the availability of Assistive Listening Devices (ALD’S) in public places like ticket booths, auditoriums, theaters, museums and houses of worship.
Places in which Hearing or Induction Loops have been installed by the venue are open systems. Anyone may have access to the loop, via a Telecoil program in your hearing aid, which can be accessed via a button on the aid, through a phone App or remote control. See your Audiologist to have this program installed if available in your hearing aids. In many places, loops have not been installed but you can still listen to things through your hearing aids if you ask for an ALD system. ALD’s are part of a closed system, accessible only to those who ask for them. The following websites will help you understand the application of Induction Loops or Public T-Coils for hearing aids and how they may help you understand things better in places in which they have been installed. www.nytimes.com/2011/10/24/science/24loops.html Below is a website for the domestic organization that advocates for the installation and use of loops in public places throughout the US. They include a list by state, although not comprehensive, that have already had these loops installed. If you travel, be aware that other countries have many more sites “looped” than those in the US. http://www.hearingloop.org/aboutus.htm If you have had an Induction Loop or Public T-Coil program installed in your hearing aids and you are not in a place that has already installed a loop, you will need to ask for an Assistive Listening Device with a NECKLOOP or INDUCTION LOOP. When worn around your neck, the neckloop can connect wirelessly to your hearing aids (instead of a similar looking device that comes with headphones, which is best used by people who need an auditory boost but who do not own hearing aids). After choosing the Induction Loop memory on your hearing aid or remote, the neckloop will allow you to access the PA system of the room you are in and have sound filtered through your hearing aids for a clearer sound. The sound comes directly into your aids, and does not have to travel airborne to your particular seat. You can also adjust the volume either through the device you were given or the volume control of your hearing aids. The NEW type neckloops offered in many theaters will look like this:
AND have will have an induction loop plugged in to the bottom. To use this one, place the induction loop around your neck, like a necklace, but do not put the earpieces in your ears. Once the neck induction loop is plugged in, the earpieces are muted and will not produce audio to disturb others around you. Once you have chosen the Induction Loop or Public T-coil program in your hearing aids the sound will sent directly into your hearing aids.
Theaters with older model neckloops will give you a totally different type of receiver which might look like this:
The lariat (B) will allow the receiver to hang around your neck about chest-high. The neck induction loop (A) should also go around your neck and should not be bunched up-- that's the "antenna" which sends the signal to the hearing aid. Using only (A) to hang the receiver around your neck will not keep the receiver high enough and may result in static. If you are attending a Theater production in NYC, loops and assistive listening devices are, by and large, maintained by the business listed below. htttp://www.soundassociates.com/services/blistings/ You might also check the New York Times theater listings and look for the (+) sign next to the name of the theater which will denote which theaters are equipped with ALD’s or Hearing Loops. Please note: If you are travelling abroad you may see many more opportunities for using loops than in the US. If you are part of a tour group you may want to contact your tour operator in advance to see what they can do to allow you to connect to the microphone of the tour guide. See your Audiologist for more information about how to use your hearing aids for best listening in public spaces.
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