What is a T-Coil in a Hearing Aid?
I know that when I was at Hears to U Audiology in Minneapolis, Minnesota, the audiologist, Kim, mentioned that one of the hearing aids I was interested in had a T-coil. “What is that?”
When you first learn about hearing aids, you are given a lot of information. Sometimes some of that information gets lost. Let us answer this question.
A t-coil is a part of the Hearing Induction loop system that provides a wireless electromagnetic signal that is received by a hearing aid that is set to the “T” setting or a device that has a T-coil such as a “loop listener”, a pocket talker, or a Personal Sound Amplifier (PSAP). The components of a Hearing Loop are a microphone, an amplifier, and the special wire that goes around a specific venue area (ex: a church, a courtroom) that acts as an antenna to radiate the signal to the aid. When the speaker talks into a microphone, it goes to the amplifier which sends out the signal via the copper wire. The copper wire sends out an electromagnetic signal that is picked up by your personal hearing aid T-Coil. And voila, the sound is clear and crisp right in your ears.
There are many benefits of the loop.
First, it is easy to use. Once you enter a space that has a loop, just switch your device to the telecoil program and automatically you will hear a clear sound. The sound is of high quality because that sound is streamed directly into your device; no background noise. It is customized by your unique hearing device. Also, it is discreet. All you have to do is change into your T-Coil program on your hearing aid/ device via a push-button/switch or via the app on your cell phone. When you are in the hearing induction loop, no additional equipment is needed other than your t coil, so no need to worry about how well that equipment was cleaned between uses. If you don’t have a t-coil in your hearing aid or you don’t have a hearing aid, simply ask for a loop listener from the venue. If the venue doesn’t have a loop listener, purchasing a device just for the loop is not expensive. Many things can be looped; in fact, anything that can plug into a 3.5 jack. You could plug in your MP3 player, a phone, an Ipad, computer, even a stethoscope.
Lastly, the hearing loop can be added to a variety of spaces; from meeting rooms to the courtroom, to places of worship, theaters, airports, countertops, and even homes. “At Hears Hearing & Hearables we have a faithful t coil patient who even looped his car. One of our patients looped her living room.”
“We are happy to talk to you at Hears Hearing & Hearables, about low-cost devices for use in a hearing induction loop. One of our patients wanted to encourage her house of worship to install a loop system as it had renovation plans under discussion. The space was large and often used as a concert hall. The problem was, she had difficulty hearing. Another wanted her local theater to invest in a system. She was looking forward to the play but then could hardly hear the actors. It would be so frustrating to purchase tickets, look forward to an evening of entertainment, only to have it ruined because you could not hear.”
If you have any questions about the Loop or t-coil technology, Hears Hearing & Hearables are ready to help.