It’s the holiday season, which means it’s also the season for family gatherings. If you have a senior family member suffering from hearing conditions, this season might be a challenging one for them.
Help your family members have fun and enjoy the season by making gatherings a special one for them. Here are some tips you and your relatives can do to start.
1. Limit Noise in the Background
It’s not easy to hear a conversation when the chatter from other people or the music from the radio is in the background. If your senior family member can’t hear well, try to keep the noise in the background to a minimum by turning off the television or music for a while.
You can also opt to move from the living room or dining room to a quieter place. These are the rooms where most people gather, and noise from TV, music, or other chatter might make it hard for them to hear.
2. Be Patient and Understanding
If your senior family member can’t hear well, they might ask the same question over and over again. They might not be aware that they’re doing so, and they just want to make sure they heard you right.
Be patient and understanding when talking to your deaf and hard-of-hearing family members. If they get confused or don’t understand what you’re saying, help clear things up.
For example, point to what you’re talking about or use gestures to let them know you have something to say. The point is not to get frustrated if communication is difficult for them.
3. Ensure You Are Positioned Right
You might think the position you’re in when communicating with your family member is unimportant, but you might be wrong. Positioning yourself in a way that allows them to hear you is more important than you think.
When talking with your senior family member, make sure you’re close enough to them to hear them clearly, but not too close. You can do this by using appropriate body language that shows you are listening.
Instead of standing in front of them and talking, try sitting down next to them. If you want to speak to them face-to-face, try to sit next to them with your back against a wall or facing the side, so they don’t have to turn their head sideways to hear you.
4. Speak Clearly
Clear speech is paramount when trying to talk to a family member with hearing conditions. Slowing your speech and making sure you enunciate your words as clearly as possible can make a load of difference.
5. Apply Perspective Listening
Perspective listening involves using perception, context, visual cues, and pieces of the conversation it has heard to figure out what has been said.
Encouraging a senior in your life to learn perceptive listening, which they can practice like any other skill, can help them gain some independence when communicating with family and people outside the home.
6. Provide Hearing Devices
Depending on your family member’s hearing condition and how severe it is, you might need to get a hearing device for them. You can purchase hearing aids for them, but you can also get a more modern option with a wireless hearing device.
A wireless hearing device is a small Bluetooth device usually worn in the ear. It translates sound into another form of audio and sends it directly to the earpiece.
Hearing conditions can make it hard for senior adults to listen to what’s happening around them. Help your family members have fun and enjoy the season by using these to make gatherings a special one for them.
If you’re on the hunt for the best hearing aid for your loved one, Hear More Associates can help you. Our team of the best hearing care specialists will start with free hearing tests and provide the most appropriate hearing aid for their needs. Contact us today to learn more.