Children with hearing loss love sports just as much as any other child! The fact that they wear delicate electronic devices that are HARD in or around their heads makes it necessary to protect them during activities in which a child could come into contact with something or someone else. Families remain the BEST decision makers for how to keep their children safe! The information contained on this page does NOT guarantee that a child will be harm-free when following these suggestions. (Supporting Success for Children with Hearing Loss will not be held liable for any damages or harm which may occur if any of the suggestions below are followed).
Karen L. Anderson, Director
- If you are searching for a helmet that is compatible with Cochlear Implants or hearing aids, look for things like “adjustable dial” or “rack-and-pinion system” in the list of helmet features and pay close attention to how the helmets’ fit system works! Adjustability around the circumference of the child’s head as well as the height (up and down) is important.
- Some people will put on a bandana or do-rag on first and then put the helmet on to absorb sweat.
- Per Robert Fifer, PhD, the current research on helmet design suggests the padding around the ears should not be modified in any way for two reasons: First, altering the energy-absorption characteristics of the helmet would decrease protection against physical head trauma; second, the plastic case of the hearing aid was not designed to be used in traumatic impact situations. Impact may not only cause damage to the hearing aid but it possibly increases the risk to the skin and skull in the immediate area of the hearing aid. Fifer, R. (2009, July 14). Head-to-Head With Helmets and Hearing Aids. The ASHA Leader
|Look for helmets that have inflatable padding as they provide the most flexible fit over hearing aids and CI processors
Example: Riddell Speedflex Youth
|Look for fully interchangeable padding; various straps that can be adjusted to the shape of the head, avoiding pressing on the hearing device
Example: Full 90 Select
|Look for a helmet with a dial fit adjustment; open it all the way, put helmet on and then tighten until it is snug but comfortable with the headpieces or hearing aids in place
Example: Rawlings Custom Helmets
|Look for a helmet with a dial fit adjustment. When biking, be sure to use mirrors since your ability to hear will be compromised by the helmet and wind noise.
Example: Schwinn Intercept
|Look for a helmet with a dial fit adjustment.
Example: MONATA Ski Helmet
|Look for a helmet that sits up higher on the head, not covering the hearing aid or CI processor.
Example: Skateboard Helmets
Thanks to Tina Childress for her expertise and contributions to this information!
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