Holidays and Hearing Loss: How to Enjoy the Celebrations
Enjoying the holidays is all about having friends and family around you to celebrate. Keeping those that mean the most to you close by so that you can relish in their company may be the most exciting part of the holidays.
What if you can’t hear those special conversations? What if your hearing loss is too embarrassing to deal with, and so you avoid attending get-togethers and, in turn, miss out on all the fun and enjoyment you used to love and look forward to?
Allowing your lack of hearing to affect your everyday life, especially during this wonderful time of year, does not have to be how it is. So much fantastic technology is available to those experiencing hearing loss, whether great or small. Technology aside, you can also do some things to improve your experiences and overall enjoyment this year.
Tips for Enjoying the Holidays Despite Your Hearing Loss
Don’t avoid seeing your friends and family this holiday season. Instead, try using some of these tips to improve your holiday fun!
- Be Honest – While it may seem like the right thing to do at the moment, nodding and going along with a conversation you can’t hear often makes things worse. It can be tough constantly feeling like you’re missing out but being upfront with those you’re talking with about your hearing limitations can be a great start to solving the loneliness you may be feeling. If loved ones know your struggles, they can speak up and help make a potentially awkward situation more comfortable. The most important thing to remember is that even though you may not be able to hear all parts of the conversations going on around you, you can still be with those you love and have fun this holiday season.
- Talk to the Host – Before attending a holiday party, make an effort to call the host and talk to them about your lack of hearing and the concerns that go along with it. If the host knows more about how to help you feel more comfortable, it will make them happy too. After all, the host is most likely your friend or family member that cares about you. Hosts can make simple adjustments to seating, background music, and more. Even seating kids at different tables can help make it easier to hear conversations between adults. Don’t be afraid to let others know your needs so everyone, including you, can have fun!
- Be Strategic About Where You Sit – If you have problems hearing others, don’t sit at the end of the table, but place yourself in the middle. If background noise makes it hard to listen to others speaking, don’t sit by the speakers. It all sounds like common sense, but it will take some forethought and may require you to be on time or even a little early to make it happen.
- Take a Break – It’s okay to take a little break from the party and give yourself a moment to rest. Even slipping into the restroom or taking a walk outside with a friend or spouse for a few minutes can give your mind and ears the break you need to finish the party strong.
- Enjoy More One-on-One Conversations – Inviting someone to sit on the couch with you or even in another room to have a talk can be a great alternative to a noisy crowd. Sitting in proximity and especially away from distracting noises will help you make out more of what your loved one is saying. Plus they will feel special knowing you value their company and want to take the time to be with them.
- Stay in Touch in Other Situations, Too – Talking with those you care about doesn’t have to happen only at parties. Take the time to call friends, or better yet, use a video chat to catch up with your kids and grandkids. Video chat is especially useful for the hearing impaired because you can turn the sound up, be in a quiet environment, see the speaker’s lips to aid in lip reading, and even have captions to read what’s being said. Give it a try. It may be your new favorite way to communicate!
- Check Out Technology Available to You – There are always new advancements in technology that offer more and more options for the hearing impaired to be more comfortable and hear a little better than before. Things like portable devices equipped with both a microphone to place by the person talking and headphones for the hard of hearing to wear and increase the speaker’s volume are excellent. Even your smartphone and some headphones can be used to amplify sound. Pretty amazing!
- Hearing Aids – You may have or have not given hearing aids a try, but they are well worth the effort if you haven’t. Even if it’s been a few years since you tried wearing hearing aids, you should check out your options now, as they are always changing and improving.
You should know that hearing aids will not restore your hearing back to your days as a youth, but they can bring back much of the enjoyment you may be currently lacking from conversations with family.
Improve Your Holidays and Your Future
Make this holiday season different this year by doing what you can to improve your hearing situation. While none of the tips above will solve all your hearing problems, they can make life easier and more fun for you and your family. The holidays are a time for family and catching up. So don’t avoid those celebrations any longer!
To learn about more ways you can improve your hearing, contact our team at Fairfax Hearing Center. We will answer any questions you may have about the services we offer. Then when you’re ready, get started on your journey to hearing better with a consultation and hearing test.
We look forward to hearing from you!