Holidays and hearing loss: How to enjoy time with family
When someone with hearing loss is at your holiday gathering, Tonini offered some tips on effectively communicating:
- Reduce background noise as much as possible. This could mean turning down the volume on the TV or turning it off altogether.
- Speak slowly and clearly but not loudly.
- Do not repeat the same thing over and over, instead restate it. This helps to provide context to the person you’re talking to.
- Focus on the person with hearing loss and make sure he or she knows what the topic of conversation is so there’s no disconnect.
As we age, hearing loss becomes more of a reality for us as well as those around us. When sitting together at the dinner table with family, it is important for those with normal hearing to understand that there may be family around that are struggling to keep up with conversation.
It is best to assume that if you are speaking to an older person that they have some type of hearing loss, and if its obvious they have some problems you need to look for ways to fit them into the conversation. “If you are struggling to hear the person next you at the loud dinner table, than the hearing impaired could be utterly lost,” he said.