RAPID CITY, SD – When talking to someone with a hearing aid, there are some common courtesies to keep in mind. Cassandra Garver, Certified Hearing Aid Specialist and Owner of Lifetime Hearing Solutions, shares some of the common mistakes people make when talking to someone with a hearing aid and how we can be more attentive, in general, during those conversations.
When it comes to talking to someone who is wearing a hearing aid, Garver expresses that the best thing you can do is make sure you have their attention. âThe wearer will always hear best when looking directly at someone talking to them,â Garver explains. In fact, people with hearing loss rely on visual cues to help them resolve these hearing problems. Visual cues include both facial expressions and lip reading. So actions like unconsciously covering their mouths while speaking can also hamper their ability to understand you.
Garver says that “What I encounter the most with a husband, wife, or family members is that they talk to the hearing aid wearer and think that just because they have a hearing aid they are going. always hear them. ” However, this is not the case. âIf they’re not careful, they won’t hear you,â Garver said.
Another common mistake when talking to someone with a hearing aid is the way a person reacts when the hearing aid wearer asks them to repeat something. Many times someone will repeat their words louder, but that’s usually not what they need. âIt’s not necessarily the volume,â Garver explains, âYou may be speaking too fast. So if you are asked to repeat yourself, just speak more slowly and do your best to state.
While it is important to be attentive to the way you converse with a hearing aid wearer, it is also essential to recognize the signs that someone is not getting the whole conversation. They can nod their heads, regardless of the context of the conversation or the question that has been asked. They may also start to avoid places where they know it is harder to hear.
Garver’s advice for people in these situations is to stand close to a wall so that the sound comes from only one direction. Further, she explains that “there are hearing aid programs specific to noisy environments that can help the wearer get the most out of their hearing aids.”
Overall, as a family member or friend of someone with a hearing aid, the best thing you can do is be supportive and patient. âThey want to hear from you,â Garver explains, âbut it’s going to take a while; hearing loss is so gradual that it takes time to get used to hearing again through a hearing aid. It is therefore important that both parties are patient and understand what the other is going through.
When it comes to getting a hearing aid, the first step is a hearing test to determine the degree of hearing loss. Garver says she has yet to meet someone who regrets having had a hearing aid: âIt has changed their quality of life. They are more relaxed and participate in more conversations. Hearing about life is important.
To make an appointment to have your hearing assessed, contact Lifetime Hearing Solutions by calling 605-342-1619 or visiting their website at LifetimeHearingSolutions.com