When we’re off to the movies or theatre, it’s quite common to invest a small fortune on tickets. It breaks my heart when I hear “Everybody was laughing except for me,” or “I missed half of the dialogue.” There is no reason for this to happen. The Americans with Disabilities Act requires that these venues offer hearing assistance.
If you request a hearing device at the box office, you will be given a headset to stream the sound from the screen or actors directly into your ears. You may be asked to provide a credit card or driver’s license in return.
Sending sound directly into your ears from any sound source is a great way to ensure that you don’t miss a word. If you are a hearing aid wearer with telecoils in your hearing aids, ask if the theatre has a hearing loop. There’s nothing better than having sound directly sent through hearing aids that were prescribed for you.
Here are several problems that you may encounter. First, it’s getting a headset that doesn’t work. It’s pretty frustrating when the show starts and you find out that you have a broken unit. Purchasing your own compatible headset is one solution. Talk to your Audiologist to choose the right system. Secondly, the cleanliness of these devices is sometimes questionable. Packing a few sanitizing wipes can combat this concern. Lastly, it is unfortunate that there are a handful of theatres offering assistance that was not installed properly. This will create a disappointing experience.
Give better hearing a chance. And odds are, if you or someone you know has difficulty at the movies or theatre, it’s time for a hearing check. We’d love for you to not miss a word.