For more than a third of the Baby Boom generation, amplified telephones for the hearing impaired are a must-have that makes life better, easier, and safer.
More than 30 percent of people over 60 report some degree of hearing loss, and that percentage increases as we age; about half of all people over 85 are hard of hearing to some extent. With millions of Baby Boomers turning 60 each year, hearing loss is now the third most common health problem in the US, behind arthritis and heart disease.
Problems with speech clarity are generally the first indications of age-related hearing impairment. Mild to moderate hearing loss makes it difficult to hear distinct words, particularly when there is background noise. Voices may sound faint or muffled, and certain tones and frequencies may become almost impossible to hear. And that’s where amplified telephones for the hearing impaired come in.
Standard Telephones Increase Problems for Hard-of-Hearing
Though most people manage everyday life with mild to moderate hearing loss without a hearing aid, almost all people with hearing impairment find that talking on a standard telephone can be extremely difficult and frustrating. Even when the volume is set to the highest level, voices sound low, muffled, and indistinct.
Almost invariably, hard of hearing people say talking on the phone is one of their greatest problems. Not only is it embarrassing and frustrating, it can lead to serious and even dangerous situations – for example, not being able to clearly hear medication instructions from a doctor or pharmacist.
Many people with mild to moderate hearing loss become “phone-phobic” and try to avoid using the telephone whenever possible. But that’s seldom a practical solution.
Amplified Telephones For The Hearing Impaired Can Solve Many Typical Communication Problems
Millions have found that phones made especially for people with hearing loss are just enough of an assist to enable them to successfully adapt without needing hearing aids. There are several options available, depending on the type and degree of hearing loss.
- Portable Amplifier Units are small, convenient amplifiers that are attached between the telephone pase unit and hand set. They can be quickly connected to any phone anywhere, no wiring required, and they can amplify incoming voices by as much as 30 db. Portable amplifiers, also known as handset amplifiers, are a low-cost, efficient solution for many who have mild hearing impairment.
- Phone Line Amplifiers work the same way as portable units, attaching between the base unit and handset, but they are generally somewhat larger and more powerful. Phone line amplifiers can increase incoming voice volume by about 40 Db.
- Amplified Handsets can be used with most phones, simply replacing the handset that came with the telephone.
- Amplified Telephones are phones with amplification and other features for hearing improvement built in. Amplifier phones can boost incoming voices by up to 50 db or even more, and some also reduce background noise and echo. Most provide a volume adjustment and some offer a volume “booster” button on the handset.
Amplifier phones are available in both corded and cordless styles, with a wide range of features including call waiting and caller identification.