Helpful Hints

Tips on making dialing telephones easier

Many of our patients find dialing phones very challenging.  There are some simple strategies to make things easier.  Big button phones are easy to see and they come in black numbers on a white background or white numbers on a black background.  Low vision patients can determine which color combination works best for them.  Best of all some states, like Massachusetts, has a program that distributes these adapted phones for FREE.  Many of these phones have memory buttons to make calling out even easier.  These buttons can be color coded to make them easy to use when calling specific people. 

Another important lesson that we teach is to help our patients become more familiar with the dial pad.  Most people, for example, do not realize that there is a raised dot on the number “5” which when located serves as a “home key.”  When the number “5” is located, someone can easily find the number “2” immediately above of the number “6” to the right of the “5 home key.”  Often, we also make a large diagram of the phone dial pad including memory buttons that is easier for people to see and use as a guide when making calls.

Using these simple strategies, low vision patients can break through their isolation and can stay in touch with friends and family.