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Phonak FM with hearing loss

Supplier: Phonak Australasia Pty Ltd

FM Systems for Children with Hearing Loss


Phonak FM with hearing loss

Children with hearing loss suffer from loss of audibility of sounds. That it is why they need hearing instruments that amplify sound to make speech, music and all other sounds surrounding us audible again. But hearing loss goes beyond a mere loss of audibility.

Children (as well as adults) with hearing loss are less able to distinguish between different frequencies and different lengths of sounds. These subtle cues are necessary to understand speech which can be defined as a rapidly changing acoustical input signal.

When these fine details get lost, speech understanding becomes more and more difficult, especially in competing background noise. Consonants, such as /p/ and /t/ that carry most of the information in speech are confused or not heard at all.

Children’s auditory systems are not fully developed until they are in their mid-teens. Furthermore, children do not have the years of language and life experience to fill in the gaps if they miss something. Speech understanding requires both acoustic and linguistic processing.

Children with hearing loss therefore need a clean input signal. This is especially true in the classroom, where children need to learn in surroundings which are often noisy. While a normal hearing person can understand everything in a classroom, a hearing impaired child may not be able to understand anything the teachers says.

The best way to give children with hearing loss access to a clean signal is by means of an FM system. An FM system is a direct wireless connection between the teacher’s voice and the child’s ears.

All difficulties caused by noise, distance to the teacher or echo in the classroom can be eliminated with an FM system. The child can hear the teacher anywhere in the classroom, as if the teacher were very close by all the time. The system is also ideal on outings and excursions, in lectures or on museum tours.

An FM system consists of an FM transmitter with a microphone which is worn by the teacher and FM receivers which are connected to or built into the child’s hearing instruments. The microphone picks up the teacher’s voice and the transmitter sends the signal on to the receivers.

This personal radio system ensures optimal learning conditions for hearing impaired children. Audiologists worldwide agree that in the school environment, FM systems are essential for all children with hearing loss.