You know it’s time to begin talking over hearing aids when your dad quits using the phone because he has a tough time hearing or your mom always reacts late to the punchline of a joke. Although a quarter of individuals aged 65 to 74 and 50 percent of people over age 75 have noticeable hearing loss, getting them to acknowledge their challenges can be another matter altogether. Most people won’t even detect how much their hearing has changed because it declines slowly. Even if they do recognize it, acknowledging that they need hearing aids can be a big step. The following guidance can help you frame your discussion to ensure it hits the right note.
How to Tell a Loved One That They Need Hearing Aids
View it as a Process, Not a Single Conversation
When planning to have a discussion about a family member’s hearing loss, you have lots of time to think about what you will say and how the person might react. As you think about this, remember that it will be a process not one conversation. Your loved one may take weeks or months of talks to accept hearing loss. There isn’t anything wrong with that! Let the conversation have a natural flow. You really need to wait until your loved one is very comfortable with the decision before going ahead. After all, hearing aids do no good if someone won’t wear them.
Find Your Moment
When your loved one is by themselves and calm would be the best time. If you choose a time when other people are around you might draw too much attention to your loved one’s hearing problems and they could 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 take part in the conversation.
Be Open And Direct in Your Approach
Now isn’t the time to beat around the bush with obscure statements about your concerns. Be direct: “Lets’s have a conversation about your hearing mom”. Give clear examples of symptoms you’ve observed, such as having trouble following television programs asking people to repeat themselves, complaining that people mumble, or missing information in important conversations. Talk about how your loved one’s hearing problems impact their day-to-day life instead of emphasizing their hearing itself. For example, “I’ve noticed that you don’t socialize as often with your friends, and I wonder if your hearing issue might be the reason for that”.
Be Sensitive to Their Underlying Fears And Concerns
Hearing impairment frequently corresponds to a larger fear of losing independence, particularly for older adults confronted with physical frailty or other age-related changes. Be compassionate and attempt to understand where your loved one is coming from if they resist the idea that they have hearing impairment. Let them know that you recognize how hard this discussion can be. If the discussion starts to go south, table it until a later time.
Provide Help With Further Action
When both individuals cooperate you will have the most effective discussion about hearing loss. Part of your loved one’s resistance to admit to hearing loss may be that he or she feels overwhelmed about the process of buying hearing aids. Provide your assistance to make the transition as smooth as possible. Before you have that conversation, print out our information. We can also check to see if we accept your loved one’s insurance before they call. Information about the commonness of hearing issues might help individuals who feel sensitive or ashamed about their hearing loss.
Know That The Process Doesn’t End With Hearing Aids
So your loved one decided to consult us and get hearing aids. Great! But the process doesn’t stop there. It takes time to adjust to hearing aids. Your loved one has new sounds to process, 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 unhappy with the hearing aids, take those issues seriously.