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Mobile Phones Compatible with Hearing Aids

audiologist holding different hearing aid styles

Hearing aids are largely considered one of the best inventions in modern times. They've evolved a lot over the years, and your ENT doctor may remember the days where these devices were extremely bulky and awkward for people to wear. Nowadays, you can get all sorts of different hearing aids – such as in the ear (ITE), behind the ear (BTE) and in the canal (ITC) – and they come with a range of features

One of the main features of modern hearing aids is the ability to connect to mobile phones. Most people will have a mobile phone nowadays, meaning you need to be able to hear phone conversations and other media while using your device. The question is, which phones are compatible with hearing aids, and how can you use the two together?

All modern smartphones are hearing aid compatible

The great news is that all smartphones built today have to be hearing aid compatible (HAC). This is due to FCC regulations, but what exactly does it mean? Effectively, compatible phones will have a small coil of wire called a hearing loop. You will also see this referred to as a telecoil in the settings of many mobile phones. 

What this does is generate a magnetic field that registers sound and transfers it to your hearing aids. As a result, when taking phone calls, you can hear the caller's voice a lot clearer than if there was no telecoil present. 

How to know if a mobile phone is compatible with your hearing aids

If you bought a phone within the last couple of years, there's a high chance it is hearing aid compatible. However, what if you have an older phone and want to check if it can be used with hearing aids? 

We can't give a precise rundown of what to do as it can vary slightly depending on the phone you have and the operating system it uses. Still, you can typically find the right setting by going into the Settings app on your phone and looking at the Accessibility menu. Here, you can navigate through the options and look for one that's either labeled Hearing Aid Compatibility or Hearing Devices. If you are struggling to find these settings, you can always search for them. 

Alternatively, bring your mobile phone with you when you visit your ENT and ask them to help. If these settings exist in your phone, you will have one that's compatible with hearing aids. If not, then it won't.

How to use hearing aids with a mobile phone

How can you set your mobile phone up to be used with your hearing aids?

You'll be pleased to know that the process is a lot simpler than it may seem. These three steps are all that's required:

  • Activate the hearing loop setting on your hearing aid - if you don't know how to do this, your ENT will show you. It's usually as easy as flicking a little switch or pressing a button. 
  • Activate the same setting on your phone - this can be done by following the steps mentioned earlier, then turning the setting on. 
  • Finally, you put your phone close to your hearing aid to get the best connection and enjoy clearer phone calls. 

It's a good idea to always have the telecoil setting turned on your mobile phone. This way, whenever you receive or make a call, all you have to do is activate the setting on your hearing aids. 

Can Bluetooth hearing aids connect to mobile phones?

Yes, this is another way in which hearing aids are compatible with mobile devices. If you have a hearing aid with Bluetooth capabilities, you can pair it with your phone. From here, you can play music or other sounds directly through your hearing aids via your mobile phone. Some hearing aid manufacturers also have apps that you can download to control more hearing aid settings from your mobile. 

Experiencing hearing loss can be a challenging time for you in your life, so it helps to get your hands on something that can improve it. Hearing aids will do just that, and the fact you can connect them to your mobile phone makes them all the more convenient. 

Contact us to learn more

Do you have any questions relating to hearing aids and how they work? At ENT Specialists, we offer a comprehensive hearing aid service that can help you out. Feel free to contact us today to learn more about us and what we can do. Call our number now at 402-397-0670, and a member of our team will be more than happy to assist you.