Stephen Lloyd: An open letter to those who manufacture lugware (hearing aids!)

Posted on September 24, 2013

After many years of using induction loops  I decided – on the advice of a few friends – to go for direct input headphones so I could listen to music to my level of pleasure, so I spent some cash and bought a pair of shoes for the aids I had, Oticon Zests.

After many attempts, I couldn’t get the things to work, so I made an appointment at the audiologists and explained my frustrations. After a few minutes of twiddling, I was told that the model of aids I had didn’t have the capability for direct input.

So with a whinge and a look of lost hope I was offered an upgrade and got new aids (Oticon Zest Plus).

So far, I am very pleased with the features – they communicate with each other via FM – and NOW I can use the direct input shoes!

I admit they cost a lot, but for the pleasure of enjoying music, they were well worth it. Also with this technology, if I choose to can access the telephone and television too…but it entails further cost. Which doesn’t make sense to me.

So here’s an open letter to those who manufacture our lugware..

Dear makers of hearing aids,

We know that technology is advancing all the time, and the innovation with aids is moving forward along with progress.

Maybe the possibility of us deafies listening to music is a mere afterthought. As its a well known fact that deafies don’t listen to music, isn’t it? Or so you might think…

We also watch TV, and some of us use the telephone, too.

With wisdom and thought, wouldn’t it be right that when you issue hearing aids, you should find the box contains all of the attachments required?

Yours sincerely,


If you enjoyed this article, you may also enjoy Stephen’s previous article for us: Do you get ‘itchy lug’ syndrome?

Stephen Lloyd (aka @sirgarg) lives in Cheshire and works as a support worker with Adults with Learning disabilities, part time deaf philosopher and deaf “jedi” tweeter. 

The Limping Chicken is the UK’s independent deaf news and deaf blogs website! Check out our supporters:

Deaf Umbrella – Sign language communications provider, including BSL interpreters

121 Captions – captioning and speech-to-text services

Signworld – online BSL learning and teaching materials

STAGETEXT – Charity providing theatre captioning – giving you every word of a play

Bee Communications – Remote Captioning – providing text-based access wherever you are

Krazy Kat – live visual theatre combining mime, dance, song, puppets and sign language

SignHealth – The healthcare charity for Deaf people

Deafinitely Theatre – theatre from a Deaf perspective

Signed Performances in Theatre – sign language interpreted plays and musicals

Lipspeaker UK – specialist lipspeaking support

SDHH – Deaf television programmes online

Sign Solutions – language learning and communications

Lexicon Signstream – BSL interpreting and communication services

Action Deafness Communications – sign language and Red Dot online video interpreting

Hamilton Lodge School in Brighton – education for Deaf children

RAD Deaf Law Centre – Providing legal advice for Deaf people – in BSL

The Limping Chicken is the world's most popular Deaf blog, and is edited by Deaf journalist and filmmaker Charlie Swinbourne. 

Find out how to write for us by clicking here, how to follow us by clicking here, and read our disclaimer here.

The site exists thanks to our supporters. Check them out below:


Posted in: Site posts