couple dancing after getting a hearing consultation

Living with someone who has hearing loss certainly poses challenges. We may not realize that our loved one has missed important parts of a conversation while talking in bed or notice that they felt embarrassed when everyone else laughed at a joke they didn’t fully hear. Unfortunately, faking normal hearing is what many do to get through the day.

It is lonely and isolating to be left out of a conversation. Sitting next to your loved one and acting as an interpreter is not always possible, but your presence and attention can certainly give them an advantage. Your assurance and help with engagement will always be appreciated and it’s nice to have a shoulder to lean on in difficult listening environments.

Situations we take for granted, such as hearing from across the room or through a closed door, are difficult if not impossible tasks for someone with a hearing loss. We may also fail to consider other moments we take for granted, such as blurting out whatever is on our mind without taking the time to call out our loved one’s name and getting their full attention before speaking. We may also fail to think about facing them when speaking since it’s usually helpful to make eye contact before starting a conversation.

If your loved one has trouble hearing, don’t just talk louder. Volume doesn’t help unless you were mumbling under your breath or whispering. Try rephrasing your words.

Slowing down when you speak is another way to improve understanding. Fast talkers pose increased difficulty to anyone with hearing challenges. It is always helpful to take time and pause so that information has time to be processed.

Be patient, be kind, because one day it may be you. Consult an audiologist if you or a loved one has shown signs of hearing loss. We’re always here to help.