Hearing Loss Communication Tips

Hearing Loss Communication Tips

Hearing loss can be a very frustrating condition, for all parties involved. As humans we thrive on communication, so hearing loss doesn’t just affect the person who has a hearing impairment. Hearing loss also affects everyone else around them. Communication can become difficult as well as frustrating, but there are communication techniques that can be implemented that can help re-establish your connections with others.

Looking for some ways to open up the lines of communication? Check out our hearing loss communication tips that you can use if you are hard of hearing, or you know someone who has a hearing problem.

For People with Hearing Loss

• If you have hearing aids, wear them. Don’t be ashamed to wear your hearing aids. They are meant to give you back some degree of hearing, making it easier to communicate with others.
• Don’t hide your hearing impairment from others. If you let the other party know that you have hearing loss, they can take the proper steps necessary to accommodate you.
• To ensure that you stay on track, repeat back what you hear during a conversation. By doing this, you know you are following the conversation and will help prevent you from getting too lost during your discussion.
• Be prepared for noise and take the proper precautions by avoiding large, noisy crowds. If you are attending a religious service or a lecture, make sure you sit up front. Keep yourself close to the sound, and try to keep noise behind you.
• Don’t converse with others from across the room. Keep your conversations intimate and watch the other parties face. Hearing becomes much easier when you are able to see the person you are talking to.

Family/Friends Hearing Loss Communication Strategies

• Be patient and understanding when speaking to a person with hearing loss. Remember, hearing loss can be a debilitating condition for some people, and they are just as frustrated, so have compassion.
• Reduce the amount of background noise as much as possible. If you are conversing with a person with hearing loss, shut off the television or radio. If you are in a noisy environment, try to sit somewhere away from the crowd.
• Don’t scream or shout when speaking to someone with hearing loss, instead speak clearly. While you may think this will help, shouting distorts your speech and will make your words harder to decipher.
• When conversing with a person with hearing loss, keep your conversations close and look at their face. Make sure you slow down your speech, and if you are asked to repeat yourself, repeat it slower or reiterate your statement.
• Keep your expectations in check and reasonable. If someone is wearing hearing aids, don’t assume that they make a person hear normally again. Hearing aids can make communication easier, but they do not return a person’s hearing back to 100 percent.
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