List for accessibility access keys:

Using your phone

There are lots of ways to make it easier to use your home phone – from simple tips to helpful phone accessories.

  • Speaking on the phone

    • Always speak clearly into the mouthpiece of the phone
    • If the person you are speaking to takes a long time to say things, be patient and don't interrupt
    • Hold the mouthpiece of the phone below your bottom lip and against your chin – try not to move the mouthpiece of the phone under your chin as this can make it more difficult for you to be heard
    • Don't shout if the person on the other end of the phone cannot hear you properly. Try speaking a little slower than normal, without stressing or exaggerating words
    • If your voice, or the caller's voice, is difficult to hear, adjust the volume control on your phone to a level that's comfortable for you
    • If it is difficult to understand the speech of the person you are speaking to, concentrate on what they are saying, not how they are saying it
    • If you can't understand what the person on the other end of the phone is saying, ask them to repeat it. Never pretend you have understood when you haven't
    • If the person you are speaking to has a speech impairment such as a stammer, don't finish their words for them or guess the end of the sentence
    • Keep questions simple and ask closed questions whenever possible (so the person only has to say yes or no)
    • If you want to keep your hands free while on the phone, use your phone's loudspeaker if it has one, or use a headset and microphone instead
    • If repeating what you have said doesn't work, try saying the same thing in a different way
    • If you want to move around while on the phone, use the speakerphone, or choose a cordless phone to allow you more movement.
      Find out more about our cordless phones
    • If you have trouble speaking, you can use a textphone that lets you make typed phone calls.
      Find out more about textphones
    • If you stammer or have a speech impediment and have difficulty with the phone read the British Stammering Association guide to using the phone

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Understanding speech impairments

If you know someone living with a speech impairment, it's important to understand what factors can affect their ability to speak and communicate with ease.

Understand speech impairments