Ask the Audiologist: Do you have tips for improving communication when you have hearing loss?

June 6, 2018    Ask the Audiologist, Hearing Tips

Ask the Audiologist: Do you have tips for improving communication when you have hearing loss?

Can you provide some tips for improving communication with others when you have hearing loss?

It is not always easy for people with hearing loss to communicate their listening needs to others. But, learning to do this can go a long way to improve one’s hearing and understanding. By using effective strategies, you can modify behaviors of others and work to improve success in communication. Here are some examples:

  • Avoid saying “Huh?” or “What did you say” when you have only heard part of the conversation. Instead say, ”I know you are talking about a new TV show, but I didn’t catch the title.” Analyze what you didn’t hear and then make a polite request.
  • People often walk away or turn their head when talking, so try saying, ”I hear and understand you so much better when I can see your face.” This is a constructive and positive way to ask for help.
  • Is the person talking too fast? Mention that the words seem to run together. Ask them to slow down a bit so your ears can keep up with what they are saying.
  • Verify what you think you heard. Then ask questions when you need clari cation. “I heard the part about the traffic. I didn’t get where you were going.”
  • Use positive words to ask for help: Say, “May I ask you to speak a bit louder?” rather than, “You’re going to have to speak louder if you want me to understand you!”
  • In a group meeting, politely suggest that one person talk at a time and not cover their mouth.
  • And most of all, be patient with yourself and others. The beauty of hearing happens both ways!