We’ve all heard the phrase “communication is key.” When it comes to hearing aids, employing the right communication strategies can help improve user experience and make it easier to connect with others.
Know the Limits of Your Hearing Aids
Hearing aids are tremendously helpful to those with hearing loss. They can help you engage in activities that were once challenging due to their condition. Hearing aids make it possible to follow along with work meetings, enjoy a night out at the symphony, and have a lively conversation with friends over lattes at Coffee Head.
However, it’s important to remember that just like any technology, hearing aids have their limitations. Depending on the severity of your hearing loss, as well as other factors, there will likely be environments where you still have difficulty hearing. Knowing what your hearing aids can and can’t do for you, as well as other ways to make listening easier, can help you get the most satisfaction from your device.
Be Aware of Your Surroundings
Try to have control over your surroundings whenever possible and choose places that are hearing aid friendly, such as quieter places with less background noise and good lighting to make lip reading easier. If you are in a louder room and have the option to move to a quieter one, take it. Additionally, if you’re sitting at a table, try to ensure that you are sitting in a spot where you can see everyone’s face.
Be Open and Direct About Using Hearing Aids
Many current hearing aid models are so small that they are often unnoticeable. This means that many people you interact with won’t know that you use hearing aids or have hearing loss unless you tell them. However, being open makes communication easier for both parties and reduces misunderstandings. Don’t be afraid to ask someone to speak slowly or rephrase what they said if you didn’t catch it the first time, as well sharing any other helpful communication strategies.
Workplace Communication Tips for People With Hearing Loss
Communication is not just a vital part of our social lives but our professional lives as well. A 2014 study surveyed adults with hearing loss about communication strategies in the workplace. Researchers found that text-based strategies and quality, in-person interpreters were ranked highly in perceived effectiveness. Speak with your employer if you feel like these or other accommodations may help you succeed at your job.
For more information or to make an appointment with one of our hearing specialists, call Topeka ENT today.