Coming to Terms with Hearing Loss
From lawn mowers and leaf blowers to traffic and the TV, the world is noisier than it used to be. This is all the more annoying because you don’t cope with noise the same way other people do. For example, when in a public place, you struggle to hold a conversation with the person standing next to you. But to make matters worse, people mumble more than they used to. Or do they?
Could it be you have a hearing loss?
Friends and Family
If you are constantly asking your friends and family to repeat themselves, or you lose the thread of a conversation because you only catch half of it, you may need to consider a hearing test.
Hearing loss is nothing to be ashamed of. In all honesty, it’s better to be up front with friends and family. When you explain that you have difficulty hearing, it gives those who care about you a chance to understand why you might be reluctant to accept a dinner invitation to a busy restaurant. Human nature means they might think they’ve offended you, whereas you are fearful of appearing slow or disconnected.
Once people understand your difficulty, it offers them the chance to talk more clearly and face you when speaking to give cues from their facial expression and lip movements. Also, in the home setting, simple considerations, such as muting the TV during family discussions, enables you to participate completely.
Being honest about your hearing loss is also about helping yourself and seeking a hearing aid that meets your life style needs. Modern devices are digital for superior sound amplification, and miniaturization means the era of near-invisible hearing devices is here.
From hearing aids with background-noise cancelling programs to waterproof devices, the choice is wide and varied. The best person to help you select the hearing that meets your needs is your audiologist. In addition, the audiologist can show you how to get the best results out of your device, how to maintain it for maximum performance, and the practical aspects such as changing the batteries.
Once you begin to explore the world of better hearing, you will also discover there is so much out there to support and make daily living less complicated. There are amplification devices that make phone conversations easier, and many public venues such as places of worship and movie theaters have wireless assistive listening devices that can interact with your hearing aids to make listening easier and clearer.
The First Step
As with any new experience, taking that first step may seem daunting – but in this case it doesn’t need to be. Simply schedule a hearing test for an audiologist to assess the nature and extent of any issues. From there, they will advise you on the right path to better hearing.