Hearing Link

Acoustics

Even the best hearing aids will not cope satisfactorily in surroundings where the acoustics are poor. Have you noticed that it is often easier to have a conversation in your own home rather than in a busy restaurant?

A great deal of the difference may simply be due to the varying acoustics. The worse the acoustics, the more difficult it is for the hearing aid wearer to hear.

Here is a list of the things that can make a difference to the acoustics.

Poor acoustics Good acoustics
High, concave ceiling Acoustic tiles on ceiling
In the middle of a noisy room In the corner of a noisy room
Hard surfaces Soft surfaces
Floors covered in tiles, lino, stone, marble, granite Carpets, rugs
Wooden, metal or plastic chairs, pews, benches Armchairs, upholstered seating, cushions
Uncurtained windows Curtains, blinds
Bare tables, worktops Tablecloths, placemats, coasters
Bare walls Books, pictures, posters
 Poor lighting  Good lighting
 Kitchen, bathrooms, entrance halls in public buildings, swimming pools, supermarkets,  Sitting rooms, living rooms, bedrooms, furniture departments in department stores, libraries
 Background noise, television, radio, tannoy, washing machines, games machines in pubs Silence, television or radio off, music turned down
 Open plan offices  Small offices
Pavements Grass
Busy streets Quiet streets
Shingle  Sand

A few questions for you!

1. You have invited a friend for a meal – where would you sit?

(a) In the lounge or (b) in the kitchen?

2. You need to speak to the manager of a supermarket. Where would you ask to see him/her?

(a) In the centre of the store, (b) in a corner of the store, or (c) in the office?

3. You want to meet a friend for afternoon tea. Where would you suggest you meet?

(a) In the café of a supermarket, (b) in a fast food outlet, (c) in a small café with modern fitments,or (d) in a small teashop which is carpeted?

4. You have met a friend at the railway station and decide to take a taxi because of her luggage. Where would you have a conversation with her?

(a) In the station,(b) waiting for the taxi, or (c) in the taxi?

Answers: 1a; 2c; 3d; 4c.

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