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The use of masks has become common practice during the worldwide Covid-19 pandemic, and this will probably continue for many months.
This of course is something rather challenging to get used to under normal circumstances – but imagine being hearing impaired and using hearing aids – this has proven to be a challenge worldwide!
The hearing impaired population face many difficulties with the use of masks and we will be sharing some tips with you to make life easier with masks!
PROBLEM 1: Masks with elastic or straps around the ears can cause hearing instruments to fit too loosely and even cause them to get lost or simply be uncomfortable.
There are a few clever ways to solve this!
- Use a mask that wraps around your head and not your ears
- Do your hair in a bun or 2 buns and wrap the elastic around the buns
- Attach a button on a headband or a cap and hook the elastic around the button
- Attach a button to your glasses an hook the mask elastics around the buttons
- Use an ear saver (see below)
We also have these available at the practice for patients – free of charge:
How to use them?
Problem 2: Masks filter and attenuate high frequency sounds (2000Hz-7000Hz between 3 and 12dB! They also block nonverbal and visual cues that the listener uses to decipher what is being said.
- Ask your audiologist to add a custom mask program setting on your instruments
- Use hearing aids with a built in mask mode setting
- Try to speak up and speak as slowly and clearly as much as possible.
- Reduce background noise as much as possible
- Move to a quiet location
- Use your hearing aids
- If needs be, set your hearing aid louder
- Make use of a clear / see through mask
- Make use of a face shield
- Make use of an application that can translate speech into text in real time
Wierdapark – 012 653 3830
Saxby Medicross – 087 944 1803
Benoni – Northmead – 011 425 0171