Posted on: 4 February 2016Share
If you have a friend or family member who has just gotten hearing aids, you can make communicating with them easier by doing a few simple things. Here are 5 tips for communicating effectively with someone who has hearing aids.
#1 Get Their Attention Before You Begin Speaking
The first thing you need to do is make sure that you get their attention before you begin speaking to them. Don't assume that they can hear you from across the room or know that you are addressing them. Say their name before you begin speaking to get their attention and make sure that they can see you. Or, tap them very lightly on their shoulder.
#2 Get Close
When you speak to your friend or family member with hearing aids, make sure that you get close to them. Shortening the distance between you and them will make it easier for them to hear you, especially if you are somewhere with a loud environment.
#3 Maintain Eye Contact
Once you start speaking, make sure that you are facing towards your friend or family member with a hearing aid. Seeing your facial expressions and your lip movements are especially important for individuals who have hearing loss. These clues are even more vital and help them figure out exactly what you are saying, even if they can't make out all the words clearly.
#4 Speak Naturally & Clearly
When you speak to someone who has hearing aids, you don't need to yell. Their hearing aids have already been set to amplify your voice. When you speak louder than is natural, it will feel like you are screaming to them.
Just speak clearly and naturally. If you are a fast talker, try to slow it down a little bit. This will help them keep up with what you are saying.
#5 Be Aware Of Where You Are At
Hearing aids allow the user to fix on the noise that is closest to them and helps amplify that noise. When there is intense background noise going on, such as a dishwasher running or loud music, it can be difficult for the person with hearing aids to focus on what you are saying.
Try to be conscious of your surroundings and minimize the background noise; this will result in a lot less frustration on both of your parts.
The most important thing to remember is that adjusting to hearing aids is a process. It will take your friend or family member a little while to get used to their hearing aids and to learn how to use them properly. Try to speak clearly and look directly at them when speaking to them. If your friend or family member is having problems hearing with their hearing aid, have them contact a doctor like Mark Montgomery MD FACS to have the hearing aid repaired.