Classroom Benefits of Remote Microphone Hearing Aids

The murmur of a busy classroom might not seem distracting to most of us, but to a child with auditory processing disorder (APD) it can be enough to make it almost impossible to understand spoken speech. Adults with APD report that even a background sound like a fan or refrigerator can be enough to disrupt their hearing of a conversation. In fact children with APD need an enormous 20 decibels (dB) of difference in sound level between spoken speech and background sound to enable them to understand the speech signal. In classrooms 5dB difference is common. Classroom sound field amplification systems with loudspeakers can provide another 5dB or so of improvement if the classroom acoustics are good. But for children with APD and even some other learning difficulties there is another solution. Personal remote microphone hearing aid systems in which the teacher wears a transmitter microphone and the child wears hearing aids incorporating FM receivers provide the 20dB of signal to noise ratio improvement that the child needs.

Not only do the remote microphone hearing aids provide direct hearing and learning assistance, they also over time lead to permanent improvement in hearing abilities. Studies show that due to neuroplasticity the amplification causes permanent improvements in neurophysiological responses in the brain enhancing neural connections and auditory skills. Children with APD may not need to wear hearing aids long-term.

Teachers notice improved attentiveness, responsiveness, and comprehension in the classroom. One of the first benefits that parents notice is that children fitted with remote microphone hearing aids are far less fatigued at the end of the school day. In addition to auditory and learning benefits research has confirmed improvements in psychosocial adjustment and self-esteem in children with APD who are treated with remote microphone hearing aids.

>>> SoundSkills specialises in the diagnosis and treatment of APD, providing the support of a multi-disciplinary team of experts. Click here to learn more.