The holidays are great for spending time with family and friends. If you have hearing loss though, it can be stressful. The more friends and family around, the more challenging it can be to keep up with conversations. If you suffer from hearing loss, here are a few tips to help you get through the holiday season.
- Use your hearing aids. If you have already been fitted for hearing aids, the holidays are a perfect time to use them. If you are new to wearing hearing aids, visit your audiologist to receive a hands-on session on how to adjust them so that they are right for any noisy environment.
- Make sure you have fresh batteries. During the holidays, it might be difficult to get batteries in an emergency. Having an extra set ready to go can make sure you stay connected to everyone.
- Skip the dim lighting. If you and your family typically turn dim the lighting during the holidays for dinners, leave this out of your traditions. The lighting makes it more challenging to see others' expressions and makes it difficult to see lips, which can be useful in keeping up with conversations.
- Take breaks. Hearing loss can cause hearing fatigue. During those periods when you are not wearing your hearing aids and trying to keep up with conversations, you can become tired out. If that happens, a quick break from the conversation can help restore your hearing stamina.
- Ask your family for help. Music, loud voices, and other noises can make it difficult to clearly hear. If you are having problems, do not be shy about asking your family to make changes. For instance, you can ask your family to lower the volume on holiday music.
- Find a quiet place to talk. Background noises can be distracting when you are attempting to have a one-on-one discussion with someone. Moving to another room gives you the chance to hear the other person without the need to filter out the background noises.
- Do not pretend you can hear. If you are having trouble hearing someone, let him or her know. It is okay to ask someone to repeat what was said. In fact, if you need him or her to speak up or lean in to help your ability to hear, ask.
Talk to an audiologist, like one from County Hearing And Balance, before the holidays to learn of other ways to prepare for interactions with friends and family.