Hearing Aid Locator

Posted by grecarmar @grecarmar, Feb 18 9:44am

My mom is in a memory care facility and has severe loss of hearing. The problem is that her hearing aids go missing. The caretakers remove them each night and place them in their locked carts, but it's still not the unusual for one of hearing aids to go missing for days/weeks.

Do they make hearing aids or hearing aid accessories that have some way of locating them if they go missing? I'm thinking of something where you could cause the the hearing aid to start beeping to help in locating it.

grecarmar, it's a shame that the aids come up missing. The staff should be trained to make sure that doesn't happen, especially for the section that she is in. To answer your question, yes, some aids have a feature that can tell you the last location that the hearing aids were at. It requires hearing aids to be Bluetooth and a smartphone app. However, you may find that any smartphone left with her would disappear too. The average cost for a pair of hearing aids is $4700. Perhaps a better solution is to get mom a personal amplifier. I like the Williams Sound Pocketalker. You can find them new on eBay for around $50 (at least it was the last time I looked).
Tony in Michigan

REPLY

Thanks, tonyinmi. They try pretty hard to keep track of them, but it's hard to know if my mom is taking them out and leaving them somewhere outside of her room, or if other residents are coming in and taking them. All kinds of things go missing from her room and things that don't belong to her show up in her room. From what I understand, that's pretty common in these facilities.

I'll take a look at the Pocketalker. If nothing else, it may bridge the gap between when a hearing aid goes missing and is found.

Liked by tonyinmi

REPLY
@tonyinmi

grecarmar, it's a shame that the aids come up missing. The staff should be trained to make sure that doesn't happen, especially for the section that she is in. To answer your question, yes, some aids have a feature that can tell you the last location that the hearing aids were at. It requires hearing aids to be Bluetooth and a smartphone app. However, you may find that any smartphone left with her would disappear too. The average cost for a pair of hearing aids is $4700. Perhaps a better solution is to get mom a personal amplifier. I like the Williams Sound Pocketalker. You can find them new on eBay for around $50 (at least it was the last time I looked).
Tony in Michigan

Jump to this post

I looked at the Williams Sound Pocketalker…$139 on Amazon. Reading the reviews, I see that it's possible to pair it with an Olympus ME-52W mic ($13.54 on Amazon) to pick up conversations PLUS use for phone conversations and TV!!!!! I'll check with my Costco person, who will call me as soon as the special new earpiece she ordered for my Bernefon Zerena arrives. I'm hoping that this will finally make it possible to participate in small group meetings. I've bought a tablet for Live Transcribe (tablet's mic can't pick up speech across a table), switched to an Android phone (Live Transcribe provides a single paragraph for a four-hour meeting, missing all tech terms), bought the recommended mic for my aid ($200 and only worked for less than 10' away). Lots of effort and $$$ spent for things that still leave me in the dust, wondering what's being said. Since Charter offers zero captions (yes, I know that they're supposed to, but it's Charter, the only provider in our rural location), it would be great to be able to watch TV, esp. for the news in order to know what's going on in the world.

Anyone have any experience, good or bad, with the Pocketalker?

REPLY
@joyces

I looked at the Williams Sound Pocketalker…$139 on Amazon. Reading the reviews, I see that it's possible to pair it with an Olympus ME-52W mic ($13.54 on Amazon) to pick up conversations PLUS use for phone conversations and TV!!!!! I'll check with my Costco person, who will call me as soon as the special new earpiece she ordered for my Bernefon Zerena arrives. I'm hoping that this will finally make it possible to participate in small group meetings. I've bought a tablet for Live Transcribe (tablet's mic can't pick up speech across a table), switched to an Android phone (Live Transcribe provides a single paragraph for a four-hour meeting, missing all tech terms), bought the recommended mic for my aid ($200 and only worked for less than 10' away). Lots of effort and $$$ spent for things that still leave me in the dust, wondering what's being said. Since Charter offers zero captions (yes, I know that they're supposed to, but it's Charter, the only provider in our rural location), it would be great to be able to watch TV, esp. for the news in order to know what's going on in the world.

Anyone have any experience, good or bad, with the Pocketalker?

Jump to this post

joyces, the regular price for the Pocketalker is $139 but you can find it new for much less on eBay. You may not even have to play the bidding war to get it for a lot less. The microphone on the Pocketalker can be extended so if you get an extension cord for the mic, get one that is a mono (as opposed to stereo) connector. With the extended microphone, it will allow you to place it near the TV speaker. A wireless solution is better since you won't have to step over the cord. The Pocketalker is an older product but works very well. One other thing that I will mention is that if the included headphones ever need to be replaced, make sure you get a mono headphone, otherwise you will not hear from both right and left. If you do buy stereo headphones, make sure you also buy a stereo to mono adapter so that sound comes from both right and left.
Tony in Michigan

REPLY
@tonyinmi

joyces, the regular price for the Pocketalker is $139 but you can find it new for much less on eBay. You may not even have to play the bidding war to get it for a lot less. The microphone on the Pocketalker can be extended so if you get an extension cord for the mic, get one that is a mono (as opposed to stereo) connector. With the extended microphone, it will allow you to place it near the TV speaker. A wireless solution is better since you won't have to step over the cord. The Pocketalker is an older product but works very well. One other thing that I will mention is that if the included headphones ever need to be replaced, make sure you get a mono headphone, otherwise you will not hear from both right and left. If you do buy stereo headphones, make sure you also buy a stereo to mono adapter so that sound comes from both right and left.
Tony in Michigan

Jump to this post

tonyinmi, thanks! Since we live over an hour from a place you would think of as city-ish, I order lots of stuff using Amazon prime with speedy free delivery. Haven't tried EBay as the idea of bidding when I want something yesterday has discouraged me. For me, mono would work just fine, as my right ear went on permanent total holiday four decades ago. Actually, I may eventually pursue a CI for that ear, but still have concerns about both recruitment/distortion after the CI and a general anesthetic, which might ramp up Meniere's. Folks at the CI hearing center assure me that all the Meniere's distortion/recruitment in that ear will just disappear, but they don't seem to have much (if any) experience with CIs for Menierians. I've learned that it's wise to take assurances that "everything will be perfect after…" with a whole salt shaker.

REPLY

You may want to check out "gear for ears". One of the things they make is cords with a clip to help prevent loss. These are mainly for children but if your mother is pulling them out herself maybe you can get something custom made to fit her so if she takes them off they are still attached to her.

REPLY
Please login or register to post a reply.