Hearing loss can happen at any time in your life. It can result in you feeling disoriented and can cause problems with communication.

This can have a sudden impact on your professional and personal life and may make you feel isolated and lonely.  

Equipment for people with hearing loss


There are tools and useful pieces equipment that may be able to enhance your hearing, such as telephones which are specially adapted for use with hearing aids and vibrating smoke alarms, or visual solutions, such as programmes with subtitles:

  • You can get doorbells, which are extra loud or with different sounds, and with flashing lights
  • You can get telephones which are amplified so voices are louder, and which have an extra-loud ringer. Some have a built-in flashing light to attract your attention when it rings. 
  • Hearing aid-compatible phones are adapted to work in conjunction with your hearing aid
  • Some people prefer to use a text phone, which has a keyboard and display screen
  • Mobile phones usually have a range of ringtones, adjustable ringer volume and can also be set to vibrate when they ring
  • You can get smoke alarms that have vibrating pads which go under your pillow or mattress, and have flashing lights to alert you when you’re awake
  • You can get alarm clocks and wrist watches with vibrating and flash
  • You may also want to consider getting a portable conversation amplifier to help you hear more clearly, whether or not you have a hearing aid already.

Hearing aids

If you are hard of hearing and think you may need a hearing aid, contact your GP to request a referral to the Audiology department.  They’ll carry out a hearing check and advise you on hearing aids and if this is the best option for you. 


Enjoying TV, film and the arts

Having hearing loss doesn’t have to stop you from enjoying TV, film and the arts. Most TV programmes and films you watch at home will be available with subtitles, but you will have to turn them on yourself using your remote. If you like to go to cinema, you may find that provision at your local cinema is limited, although there are more subtitled films available now than ever. If you use a hearing aid you may find it easier to use the hearing loop or infrared system in the cinema. You will have to contact your local cinema directly to find out what is available. 

Useful contacts:

Action on hearing loss
Phone: 0808 808 0123
Email: informationline@hearingloss.org.uk

Richmond Council Adult Access Team
Address: Adult Social Services, Civic Centre, 44 York Street, Twickenham, TW1 3BZ
Phone: 020 8891 7971
Minicom: 18001 020 8891 7971
Email: adultsocialservices@richmond.gov.uk

Living made easy
Phone: 0300 999 0004

Address: Disabled Living Foundation, Unit 1, 34 Chatfield Road Wandsworth London SW11 3SE
Phone: 0300 999 0004
Email: info@dlf.org.uk