If you’re living with someone who’s showing signs of hearing loss, you have most probably experienced:
- You have to constantly be the translator or communication buffer
- Your loved one’s social life declines because going out can be exhausting for both of you.
- You sometimes feel as if you are slowly losing your partner, parent or friend to isolation.
You’re not the only one who may be finding it hard to help someone you care about come to terms with their hearing loss struggles.
Here are 9 ways you can help someone with hearing loss
1. Express care and support
Be open and compassionate, speak from your heart and let them know they have your full support. Make sure to be motivational and encourage them to talk about their hearing loss.
2. Guide them through their hearing loss journey
Help your loved one discover and accept their hearing loss – they might not fully understand the extent of it, and neither do you. You can download free information about hearing loss and hearing care to share with them, this could help both you and your loved one with their journey.
3. Choose a safe environment
Make sure the conversation takes place in a “safe” and quiet place. This way your loved one will feel more comfortable to express themselves.
4. Be patient and understanding
Don’t blame your loved one for their hearing loss. They might not realise how much it affects them and you. Having hearing loss may already be difficult for them to cope with, they would not want to upset you too.
5. Communicate with them openly and express how you feel
After listening to them, express to them how you feel about their untreated hearing loss too. Emphasise how it makes you feel when not being heard, not how much it bothers you.
6. Again - be very patient
Try to avoid nagging – nagging won’t be helpful to you or your loved one. It will only drive you and your loved one further apart.
7. Remember that hearing loss can be a sensitive topic
Don’t make fun of your loved one for not hearing everything. Don't criticise them in front of others, be sensitive to how they feel.
8. Keep them in the loop
Emphasise that you want to keep them joining in on the dialogue, be included in social events and not lose their company. Remind them that they're important and they should not miss out on the social events.
9. Encourage them to book an appointment with a hearing specialist
Before you book an appointment, they may be more comfortable trying our free online hearing test. Once you determine that a clinical appointment is necessary, you can explain to them what will happen at the appointment to make it less of a daunting experience.