Frequently Asked Questions

According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, there are more than 36 million Americans with hearing loss, 10 percent of the U.S. Population.  Additionally, a study lead by Johns Hopkins researchers estimates that 1 in 5 Americans 12 and older, some 48 million people, has a hearing loss, while 1 in 8 Americans has a hearing loss in both ears.

How many Americans live with hearing loss?

According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, 17% (36 million) Americans report some degree of hearing loss.  Additionally, a study lead by Johns Hopkins researchers estimates that 1 in 5 Americans 12 and older, (48 million) have hearing loss, while 1 in 8 Americans has a hearing loss in both ears.

What is the biggest challenge to hearing loop effectiveness?

User education is actually the biggest challenge. Many people have no idea that their hearing aid or cochlear implant has a T-coil. Even if an organization posts the universal hearing loop symbol, people may not fully understand that they can easily take advantage of the technology using their existing assistive hearing device. It helps to provide some information about T-coils on signs, in programs and in public presentations.

If I have hearing devices, why are hearing loops needed?

Today’s digital hearing aids effectively enhance hearing in conversational settings. Yet, for many people with hearing loss, the sound becomes inaudible and unclear when live speakers or recorded broadcasts are at a distance.  A hearing loop electromagnetically transfers sound signals directly to hearing aids and cochlear implants equipped with a telecoil (t-coil). Sounds are heard clearly in the hearing aids because the hearing loop reduces or cuts out background noise.

Can hearing loops serve those without telecoil-equipped hearing aids or hearing aids entirely?

Yes, hearing loops come with portable receivers and headsets for those who do not have telecoil-equipped hearing aids. You will still benefit by the reduced background noise and will have less sound distortion. Speech clarity will allow less listening fatigue on the user.

Can I just use Bluetooth or an FM System?

Bluetooth typically supports short ranged one to one pairing.  An FM system requires an additional neckloop with your hearing aid or a headset requiring you to remove your hearing aids.  Hearing loops once installed are always active—meaning they can automatically accommodate one or many thousand of users simultaneously and without any additional action on the part of the venue.

How do I know if a facility is looped?

Look for the international sign