The Holiday Season is here! What an exciting time. It is a time meant for laughter and joy, and celebration. Have you ever thought about what it would be like if you couldn’t hear this delightfulness? For those suffering from hearing loss, holidays that are meant to be FUN, actually can cause depression and isolation. A family member with the inability to hear and participate in conversation can be emotional distressed. It can leave them feeling sad, inadequate, and dejected.
We understand that hearing loss not only affects the individual, but family and loved ones as well. It can be very stressful for family members to address loved ones on their hearing loss, and even more difficult to help him or her cope. Starting a conversation is the first step in treating hearing loss, and it helps family members come together as a team to work through it. The Holiday Season and New Year can serve as a great opportunity to reach out to a loved one and talk about their hearing loss.
Many people feel embarrassed about their hearing loss, and openly discussing it can be an extremely sensitive topic. The key to a successful and positive conversation starts with making the individual comfortable. Here are some things to think about before starting the conversation.
- Choose a quiet moment in a place that is familiar to your loved one. Noisy backgrounds might make it difficult for him or her to participate in a constructive conversation. Make sure you speak slowly and clearly, and be sure to face your loved one so he or she can follow the movement of your lips as you speak to them.
- Using the right language when speaking to your loved one can make a significant difference in what direction the conversation will go. Be sure to use compassionate language, not harsh or accusatory. For example, rather than saying, “You never hear me when I speak to you,” try a more compassionate approach such as, “I’m concerned about how often you need to ask people to repeat themselves.” Be sensitive to their emotions, as often times people with hearing loss relate their hearing loss to becoming old or frail.
- Remember, it is up to your loved one to take the step to seeing a hearing care professional regarding his or her hearing loss. He or she may not be ready even though you are, so ease your loved one into the idea of having a professional hearing test. Try an online hearing test first, which consists of short questions and a listening exercise that can give you both an idea of any hearing loss issues that might require professional attention.
- Take the time to explore hearing aid options with your loved one. Exploring hearing aid options can be overwhelming, so support your loved one by being by their side. There are numerous manufacturers to choose from and a variety of hearing aids available at a wide range of price points to meet a budget. Keep in mind that today’s technology has advanced, and so has the look of hearing aids. There are hearing aid options that are unobtrusive and virtually invisible, so show your loved one the modern hearing aid options online to help ease any concerns about wearing them.
Life and all it has to offer should be an enjoyable time for everyone. Those suffering with hearing loss should not miss out on happiness. Talk to your loved one about their hearing loss and be by their side so you both can enjoy the sound of life together. At Tustin Hearing Center, we feature top hearing aid technology that is made up of the most respected and forward thinking manufacturers in our industry. Start the conversation with your loved one and help them hear better in 2016!