Sometimes it’s hard to appear vulnerable to people, even those you love the most. Admitting you have a hearing loss is definitely one of those vulnerable moments. That may be the reason why your loved one with a hearing loss hasn’t yet spoken to you about it. Of course, it could also be that they haven’t yet noticed how bad their hearing has become. Whichever it is, bringing up the subject of their hearing health is a tricky thing to do. But if you want to help your loved one, it’s essential.
To help you help your loved one get their hearing health back on track, here is a short six-step guide:
Step 1 – do your prep
Spend a little time reading about what hearing loss is, how it affects people’s everyday lives, and how it can be treated (you can find most of this information in our Resources). If your loved one is worried about any of the above, it may help to have you explain a few things to them. Also, have a think about what you’ll say to your loved one. You don’t need to rehearse an entire speech, but make a mental note of the main things you want to cover so that you don’t forget anything if things do get a little emotional.
Step 2 – find some time
Try to avoid bringing up the topic of having a hearing loss while you and your loved one are in the middle of a busy day or are surrounded by other people. Instead, find some quiet time for just the two of you to spend together, free from any distractions.
Step 3 – share your concerns
It can be hard to start a conversation about your loved one’s hearing health. One approach worth trying is to begin by sharing the concerns you have. This shows that you’re worried and that you care. Mention a few examples where you’ve noticed that their hearing may have been causing them some difficulty. Maybe you’ve noticed that they keep turning the volume on the TV up or that they seem to get a bit lost in conversations with others around the dinner table.
Step 4 – ask them what they think
Don’t forget this is a two-way conversation, so ask your loved one if they’ve noticed any changes in their hearing health. Maybe they’ve been wanting to share their own concerns but haven’t been able to find the courage to bring them up.
Step 5 – reassure them
Hearing loss is treatable and today’s hearing aids are more powerful, comfortable, and discreet than before. Tell your loved one about what you’ve discovered. You can even show them pictures and videos online so they can see just how far technology has come along. Let them know that having a hearing loss is not uncommon; 48 million Americans have a hearing loss today.
Step 6 – be there
To get the treatment they need, your loved one must start with getting a hearing test. Book it for them, if that helps, and then go along on the day. Be there to support them and let them know that they are not alone.
If you want to make sure that your loved one with a hearing loss gets Florida’s leading hearing care, you need to get them a hearing test in Miami with audiologist Dr. Michelle Couture-Souvenir. Take the first step and click here to begin the application process to become one of Dr. Michelle’s private patients.