Hearing aid users - help with helmets — Scope | Disability forum
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Hearing aid users - help with helmets

JenCo Community member Posts: 122 Pioneering
edited January 2021 in Sensory impairments
Hi all, 

I'm a Hard of Hearing individual with a BAHA. Even by usual standards mine sits kind of high up so I'm wondering if anyone can help me with a rather specific query:

What kind of bicycle helmet do/can you wear with BAHAs? 

If not a BAHA then a regular hearing aid and if not a bicycle helmet then any kind. I would love to know what people use. I was given an estimate for a hand made helmet with additional holes drilled into it and the liner. However, as this modification would require testing they could not sell the helmet without safety testing and certifying it which would cost about £2,500! That's before even buying the helmet :open_mouth:

Anyone else come up against the same or similar?
Thanks in advance.


  • BrettW
    BrettW Community member Posts: 649 Pioneering
    I'm amazed that something like this isn't already available on the market @JenCo.

    Maybe you could start contacting some of the leading helmet manufacturers explaining the situation and explaining to them that there are many people out there with hearing impairments who would benefit from such a helmet.

    You never know you may actually attract the interest of one of them who are prepared to develop such a helmet if they realise there is a market for it out there!
  • Tori_Scope
    Tori_Scope Scope Campaigns Posts: 12,465 Disability Gamechanger
    I was also disappointed by the lack of solutions I could find @JenCo. The main advice I saw was to go into a shop and physically try some on, and ask if the helmets could be physically adjusted or modified. That's obviously tricky at the moment though, and it can be expensive as you discovered!

    Another comment I saw on a BAHA Facebook group was:
    you could put your device onto a Softband, so it fits outside the helmet somehow. It will still work, just not 'as' effectively as if it's on the abutment. You'll need a little more volume possibly. You can get Oticon accessories from the The Ear Foundation shop online. All VAT free I believe.
    helmets.org also have some limited advice:
    Many of today's helmets have a ring-fit system, and do not use foam pads. The dealer buzzword is "one size fits all." Depending on the configuration of the hearing aid, a ring-fit system may work better than a model with adjustable foam pads. We have a page on ring fit helmets.

    As with children, we can not advise you to hollow out an area of the helmet for the hearing device because that will compromise the protection in that spot. Removing any of the stiff foam reduces impact protection. We are aware that when you cannot wear a helmet unless you reduce the foam to accommodate the hearing device, some riders do decide to remove some foam. The danger is that you will hit where the device is, instead of some other location. Just removing foam might not provide protection to the area around a cochlear implant. And you will have difficulty making the surface of the foam cutout as smooth as it needs to be to avoid creating fracture points. It might be easier to modify the Bontrager/Trek WaveCel inner layer, but that again involves compromising protection.

    I hope someone else might have a better answer for you, and I'll certainly keep an eye out for accessible helmets. 

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