One of the questions I get asked the most is how I listen to music with my hearing aids. I used to use a device called a neck loop, which plugged into the headphone jack and then I wore it around my neck. Unfortunately, I’ve had my neck loop for a several years and it’s officially deader than disco. So then I tried a trick I found on a cochlear implant blog. I took the regular old earbuds that came with my iPhone and tucked them up by my hearing aids. This didn’t work too well for two reasons. First of all, the earbuds didn’t stay in place if I walked around. Second of all, I started having a lot of issues with my t-coil channel picking up ambient electrical signals after we moved. That was purely a location thing, since it was never a problem before I moved.
I’m still trying to figure out what to do about using the phone, since that’s really difficult to do without using my t-coil channel, especially for automated menus like a clinic or pharmacy. But I did come up with a solution to the earbud problem that didn’t involve shelling out for another neck loop or noise-cancelling headphones.
The secret is earbuds that have those over-the-ear hooks. I bought a pair at the Dollar Tree and put them on my ears backwards, with the earbuds facing out. The hooks keep the earbuds in place, and unlike conventional earbuds, I don’t have to use the t-coil channel to get decent sound! I won’t lie, the sound is better if you can use the t-coil, but even if you can’t, the sound is still decent.
I cannot believe how well this worked! Neck loops and ear hooks are seriously $60, and I paid $1 for this pair of regular over-the-earbuds!