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Face Masks and Speech Understanding

talking with mask

The Covid-19 pandemic has definitely changed the lives of many individuals.  In particular, the hearing impaired population is affected by masks because they are unable to use lipreading cues and the quality of speech is reduced.  Here are some tips to communicate when wearing a mask:
  • Prepare in advance to keep your interactions short to increase your comprehension and preserve your energy.  Moreover, if permitted, you can bring a friend or family member to help you with communication.
  • Determine how you want to communicate your needs.  You may want to prepare something in writing claiming that you are hearing impaired and that you can not hear well when masks are worn.
  • Practice and exercise communication strategies.  You may want the speaker to speak a bit louder and slower.  Always bring paper and pen as a back up.  Prior to your engagement, you can also anticipate what will be said due to context and setting.
  • Try out and use smartphone apps that can help facilitate communication. Consider speech-to-text apps such as Google Live Transcribe (Android Only), Ava and Otter.
  • Consider using assistive listening devices that can extend a hearing aid’s range in picking up spoken language at a distance.  For example, you may want a remote microphone or a personal FM system.
  • Request clear masks are worn.
  • Put face masks on and off carefully to avoid dislodging and potentially losing your hearing device. 
  • Be mindful of the range of emotions you may experience before, during and after interactions where masks are worn.  Be kind to yourself, practice self-care and remember, this is temporary.
We at Hearing Institute of Ontario recognize the difficulty masks bring and we are here to support you.  Please do not hesitate to reach out to us with any questions or concerns that you may have.

At the Hearing Institute of Ontario, your hearing health is important to us.
Contact our Mississauga, Oakville or Scarborough office for a FREE consultation with our knowledgeable and experienced audiologists, to discuss the best hearing solution for your hearing loss type.

Differences Between an Audiologist and a Hearing Instrument Dispenser

Audiologists and Hearing Instrument Specialists are both professionals trained to evaluate, diagnose, and treat hearing and balance issues, but their roles, educational backgrounds, and scopes of practice differ. Here are some key differences:

Educational Background


Hearing Instrument Specialist

audiologist vs HID educational background
audiologist vs HID scope of practice

Scope of Practice


Hearing Instrument Specialist

Regulatory Bodies


Hearing Instrument Specialist

audiologist vs HID services provided

Services Provided


Hearing Instrument Specialist

All client care at Hearing Institute of Ontario is provided by certified Audiologists who are registered with the College of Audiologists and Speech Language Pathologists of Ontario


Book your no cost, no obligation hearing test today. Learn if you have a hearing loss and get expert advice from our certified audiologist about  how to improve your hearing.

Call us today at 1-888-664-2999 or use the green button below to schedule your free hearing test and get started on your journey to better hearing.


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This offer applies to our most popular hearing aid models from Signia, Phonak and Widex. Call 1‑888‑664‑2999 today to book your no‑cost, no‑obligation consultation!

Conditions: Offer expires May 31, 2023 and applies to the purchase of any Premium technology hearing aids from Signia, Widex and Phonak. Private sales only. Standard dispensing fee applies to both hearing aids.