You know it’s time to begin talking over hearing aids when your dad stops talking on the phone because he has a tough time hearing or your mom always reacts late to the punchline of a joke. Even though hearing loss is detectable in a quarter of people from 65 yo74 and 50% of people over 75, it can be an entirely different matter getting them to recognize their hearing issues. Hearing frequently declines little by little, meaning that many people may not even realize how significantly their everyday hearing has changed. Even if they do recognize it, admitting that they need hearing aids can be a big step. The following guidance can help you frame your discussion to make sure it hits the right tone.
How to Consider Hearing Aids With a Loved One
Recognize That it Won’t be One Conversation But a Process
Before having the conversation, take the time to consider what you will say and how your loved one will react. When getting ready, it’s recommended to frame this as a process as opposed to one conversation. Your loved one might take weeks or months of conversations to acknowledge hearing loss. And that’s fine! Let the conversations continue at their own pace. You really need to hold off until your loved one is very comfortable with the idea before going ahead. After all, hearing aids do no good if somebody refuses to wear them.
Find Your Moment
When your loved one is alone and relaxed would be the most appropriate time. If you pick a time when other people are around you may draw too much attention to your loved one’s hearing problems and they might feel like they’re being ganged up on and attacked. A one-on-one talk with no background noise also ensures that your loved one hears you correctly and can engage in the conversation.
Be Open And Direct in Your Approach
It’s beneficial not to be vague and ambiguous about your worries. Be direct: “Lets’s have a discussion about your hearing mom”. Give well-defined examples of symptoms you’ve recognized, like having difficulty hearing tv shows asking people to repeat what they said, insisting that people mumble, or missing content in important conversations. Rather than emphasizing your loved one’s hearing itself, talk about the effect of hearing issues on their everyday life. For example, “I’ve observed that you don’t spend as much time with your friends, and I wonder if your hearing problem has something to do with that”.
Acknowledge Their Concerns And Underlying Fears
For older adults who are more frail and face age-related difficulties in particular hearing loss is frequently linked to a broader fear of loss of independence. If your loved one is reluctant to talk about hearing aids or denies the issues, attempt to understand where he or she is coming from. Let them know that you understand how hard this conversation can be. Waite until later if the conversation begins to go south.
Offer Next Steps
When both people cooperate you will have the most effective discussion about hearing loss. The process of getting hearing aids can be very daunting and that might be one reason why they are so reluctant. In order to make the journey as smooth as possible, assistance. Print out and rehearse before you talk. We can also check to see if we take your loved one’s insurance before they call. Some people may feel embarrassed about needing hearing aids so letting them know that hearing loss is more common than they think.
Know That The Process Doesn’t End With Hearing Aids
So your loved one agreed to consult us and get hearing aids. Great! But the process doesn’t end there. Adapting to life with hearing aids takes time. Your loved one has new sounds to manage, new devices to take care of, and perhaps some old habits to forget. During this cycle of adjustment, be an advocate. If your family member is dissatisfied with the hearing aids, take those concerns seriously.