The holidays are upon us, and large family gatherings and meals in crowded restaurants can prove particularly difficult for people with hearing loss. Everybody is speaking loudly and at the same time.
Combine that with the clanging of dishes, scraping of chairs, and background music, and you have a scenario in which it is challenging for individuals with hearing loss to enjoy themselves. There are a few ways you can make these loud gatherings more enjoyable for you and your family if you have a hard time hearing out of one or both ears or if you use a hearing aid.
Before Get-Togethers, Have a Talk With Your Family
Before everybody gathers, it’s essential that you help your family make adjustments by talking about your hearing impairment with them. Your family can then do the things that will make communicating easier like facing you when they talk. It will make the meal a lot more enjoyable for everyone even if the conversation is a bit uncomfortable.
Sit in The Center of The Table
In some cases, it’s tradition to sit at a particular spot at the table, but the best spot to sit if you want to have an easier time hearing conversation isn’t at the head or near the end of the table, it’s in the middle. If you’re in the middle of the table, you probably won’t have to strain as much to hear what people are saying. If there is a place at the table you know is best for you, don’t be shy about telling your family your preference.
Ask That The Music be Turned Down
Background noise poses a major challenge for individuals with hearing loss because it is hard for their ears to filter out this noise and concentrate on spoken words. If you are at a family get-together, ask that the music is turned off or set at a very low background level. At restaurants, try to sit away from the kitchen and the speakers.
Look at New Technologies
An FM system or a directional microphone are helpful solutions if you don’t already have them. Both of these technologies can help you isolate background noise by facing away from it and boosting the voices you need to hear to make out a conversation.
Trying to Bluff Your Way Through Isn’t Good Plan
The only way your family will know if you are struggling through a meal is if you tell them. Hearing loss should never prevent you from enjoying the fun of the holidays with your loved ones. Your loved ones will be happy to help you with any adjustments you may need to make during your meal.