With the holidays just around the corner, you're probably thinking of gift ideas for the ones you love.
Some people can be difficult to buy for. If you have a spouse, family member or friend with hearing loss on your gift list, why not get them something they can actually use?
It will show that you understand and respect his/her needs and will make living with hearing loss a little easier for them.
Gifts for hearing loss don't have to be boring. We are including everything from technical devices to entertaining books about hearing loss to decorations for your hearing aids. Here is our top 10 list of gifts for those with hearing loss:
Probably the most popular hearing tech in 2016 was the explosion of hearables and that trend has continued into 2017. If you haven't heard of the term hearable, it's essentially a wireless, in-ear device that enhances your listening experience. Often times it's also supplemented with an additional feature like sport tracking (i.e. heart rate monitor).
(Note: Many of these devices aren't specifically for hearing loss, but since they have made such a big impact in the hearing market, we wanted to make sure to include them in the list)
Two of our favorites this year are:
- Jabra Sport Pulse. Wireless Sports earbuds with Dolby sound enhancement and biometric built-in heart rate monitor.
- Bragi Dash. Truly wireless smart earbuds.
Vibrating Alarm Clock
Those with normal hearing may not realize that it's the little things that can making living with hearing loss more difficult, like not being able to hear your alarm clock when you need to get to an important meeting.
The SmartShaker vibrating alarm clock can solve that issue by wirelessly connecting to an iPhone or other Bluetooth enabled cell phone. You set the alarm, stick it under your pillow and forget it until you are woken up on time by a vibration, alarm sound, or both. It's a thoughtful and inexpensive gift that can make a big difference.
Wake-up Light Alarm Clock
I know we just recommended a vibrating alarm clock, but here's another incredible option.
Philips has created an alarm clock that uses colored sunrise simulation to wake you up gradually with natural light. I'm just going to say that again because it's so cool…colored sunrise simulation!
WiFi Digital Doorbell
The SkyBell Digital Doorbell was not designed specifically for those with hearing impairment, but it's features are perfect for the deaf of hearing impaired.
You don't have to worry about hearing the doorbell ring, you will receive an alert right on your phone. It even has a video feature so you can use that to lipread or sign with the person at your door without even having to get up and answer it. It is a great alerting device that can come in handy for the deaf and hearing impaired.
TV Listening Device
Understanding television can be frustrating for those with hearing loss, but there are several devices available that can help make the TV listening experience more enjoyable.
TV Ears are wireless headphone devices which allow the wearer to adjust the volume of the TV independently of what others hear in the room. It helps make TV clearer and louder for them to hear more easily.
There are several other TV listening devices available. See our full list here.
Another way to improve your TV listening is to improve the sound clarity. We recently got the chance for a hands on test of the AccuVoice AV200 TV Speaker and it was a totally different listening experience.
One of the most common problems we see is people cranking the television up too high because voices are unclear. The ZVOX TV Speaker helps solve that problem. And it also comes with built-in hearing aid tech for more seamless integration.
American Girl Doll with Hearing Aids
This year you can personalize your 18″ American Girl Doll by fitting her with a pair of hearing aids!
They've added a mini-store that is a doll hospital where you can “admit” your dolls and play doctor with them, or technically play Audiologist :)
Books for Children and Teens with Hearing Loss
There are many fantastic and entertaining books on the market that can help to ease the transition into wearing hearing aids and cochlear implants for children and young adults. Here are some of our favorites:
- El Deafo (this was a 2015 Newberry Honor Book!)
- Itsy Bitsy Spider (Sign and Sing Along board book)
- Freddie and the Fairy
- Rivers' Walk
- Maxi's Super Ears
- Let's Hear it for Almigal
- I'm The Boss of My Hearing Loss
- Cosmo Gets an Ear
- Sophie's Tales
- A Birthday for Ben
- Sway (the only young/teen adult book on the list)
Hearing Device Decorations
There is no better way to make hearing aids and cochlear implants more fun than to add a little character and bling!
Your kids will love it, and some adults will too!
A great gift for a senior living with hearing loss, a captioned telephone, like the Clarity Ensemble telephone will help keep them connected to their loved ones, without the struggle of trying to hear on the phone.
Those with hearing loss can have a hard time hearing their cell phone ring, especially women who have their phone buried in their purse or sitting in the other room.
Trellie smart jewelry will vibrate and/or flash a light when an important phone call, message, email, or alert comes in on your cell phone giving you the peace of mind that they aren't missing the important things. It's a functional and fashionable gift that will get you major brownie points.
This may not sound like one of the sexiest gifts, but losing your hearing isn't sexy either.
Those with hearing loss tend to worry even more about noise exposure than those with normal hearing because they value and protect the hearing they have left, and they tend to be more sensitive to loud sounds.
They are also much more aware of noise-induced hearing loss because they have likely experienced it to some degree in the past.
(P.S. If you have a hunter in the family, they my love a set of Decibullz custom molded ear plugs)
Giving a loved one with hearing loss the gift of better communication is the best gift you can give. It shows that you care about their struggles and their needs and can make a big difference in their life long after the holidays have passed.
Consider your friends and loved ones with hearing loss and consider giving them one of the gifts above to spread more holiday cheer this year.
P.S. Let us know in the comments below if you get or receive one of these gifts this year, or if you have an even better one you'd like us to add!