Hearing loss, whether caused by disease, exposure to a loud noise, medication or just plain “getting old,” can be frustrating, depressing, stressful, annoying, isolating and simply one more thing to add stress to daily life. Wow, don’t we already have enough stress?
People with hearing loss are in a constant battle to understand what the sounds are around them. If someone speaks, they may have issues knowing exactly what they have said. This creates a different kind of stress because many times the person that has the hearing issue does not want to appear unable to hear someone, but either way they did not hear or understand. This alone will create problems with conversations and compliance for the hearing impaired.
Normally, after a period of denial-based time and loved one’s numerous complaints and maybe even some coaxing, the person with a hearing loss finally takes action.
The fact is… hearing loss in any family affects the entire family.
Indeed, you might feel isolated. You may engage with others less because of all that screaming just to be understood. You might feel sorry for yourself. You’re the one with the problem, right?
Amazingly during your trip to the audiologist, you find out that you have a hearing loss and that Hearing aids are recommended.
New Hearing aids are a God send. You finally can understand your wife while she is in the kitchen and you are on the couch watching that football game. Yes, she said to take out the trash and you heard her.
Now you are getting use to wearing new hearing aids. Your hearing seams to get better but you start to wonder if your hearing aids are working as good as they were when you first got them. Maybe they need to be turned up a little more.
Most people with hearing loss that wear hearing aids, have the mindset that they need more volume. That is absolutely the wrong way of thinking. As we experience hearing loss, most of us have only some frequencies that are not working correctly. That leaves others that are working correctly. This makes a volume adjustment that elevates all frequencies a bad choice for most circumstances.
Indeed, as a family member, you have your own set of stresses with which to cope. No denying. However, it’s important to recognize the feelings experienced by the individual with hearing loss – sometimes over a short period of time. That’s no “walk in the park,” either.
Recognize the impact hearing loss is having on other members of the family, how communications have changed – lessened. How stress has slowly crept in to become part of the daily routine.
There are numerous coping strategies you can use to help you understand your feelings and the feelings of others, whether you are the family member with hearing loss or one of the family members who must cope with hearing loss in a loved one.
Rules to remember to help Hearing loss environments.
- Be patient with Hearing loss people.
- Stand directly in front of the individual.
- Provide visual clues with mouth movements.
- Ensure you have their attention, and they are aware you are speaking to them.
- Sit close to each other in crowded, noisy spaces.
- Position yourself so eye-mouth contact is easy and un-noticed by others!
- Do not call out from another room to an individual with hearing loss.
- Walk to where communication can take place.
- Turn down or get away from background noise.
What are you waiting for? Isn’t it time to address that loss of hearing and eliminate a totally unnecessary source of stress in your family life? Time to pick up the phone and make that call to an audiologist near you.