One of the lasting memories of 2020 will be social distancing – and face masks of course! Modern technology has played an important part in communication this year, through the miracles of Zoom, Skype, etc. we have been able to keep in touch with those nearest and dearest. But even with the wonders of modern technology, Christmas can still be a challenging time for those who suffer from a hearing loss making it an isolating and stressful experience. So here’s 12 tips for a better hearing Christmas….
- If you are a hearing aid user, make sure it is working at its optimum level. Visit your local hearing aid supplier so you, and your hearing aids, can have a comprehensive check up – including checking for wax.
- If your hearing aids are smart phone or Bluetooth compatible get this feature turned on. These features are designed to be user friendly and once they have been activated they are simple to use and will make a world of difference to your hearing over the phone and during Zoom and Face Time, etc.
- Turn down background noise. Trying to understand speech in noisy situations can be extremely daunting to those suffering from a hearing loss, they will find it increasingly difficult to follow conversations and will miss out on a lot of the fun.
- Consider the lighting. Engaging with people in a well lit area lets those with hearing difficulties take visual clues from body language, facial expressions and some lip reading. This is even more important in today’s climate regarding facemasks.
- Set up more than one room for gathering in. A smaller more enclosed room away from the noise of laughter the hubbub of conversation in the common area would be better suited for one-to-one conversations.
- Tell people! Let people know if you are struggling, don’t suffer in silence. Remember that you are with friends and loved one – they would hate to think that you were missing out.
- Don’t bluff. Not only could this get you in trouble or get a rise from those around but you may be missing out on some juicy gossip or a funny story. People generally know when you’ve misunderstood something. It’s nothing to be embarrassed about, relax and simply ask people to clarify what they’ve said.
- Position yourself well. Put yourself in a spot where you can see and make eye contact with people. If you have a “better” hearing side, seat yourself so most people are on that side.
- Grab a buddy. Find a friend or relative who can repeat things you haven’t understood, so you can feel more confident and included in the conversation.
- Take a break. Sometimes your ears can be overwhelmed, clear your head by spending a few minutes outdoors or in a quiet room allowing you to gather the energy required to carry on socialising.
- Put off doing the dishes…. The clinking and clattering of dishes and cutlery can distract or sometimes override dinnertime conversation.
- Wear your hearing aids! This is the most important tip AND APPLIES ALL YEAR ROUND!
Call Solent Hearing on 01590 643347