For people who have hearing loss, family meals and gatherings can be a challenge. Not only do several people tend to talk at once in these settings, but they also raise their voices to be heard over each other.
It becomes even more difficult for individuals who have hearing loss when you add other noises like background music, chairs scraping, and dishes clattering. There are a few ways you can make these noisy gatherings more enjoyable for you and your family if you have a difficult time hearing out of one or both ears or if you wear a hearing aid.
Before Gatherings, Have a Discussion With Your Family
Before everyone gathers, it’s essential that you help your family make adjustments by discussing your hearing loss with them. Your family can then do the things that will make communicating smoother like facing you when they talk. It will make the meal much more enjoyable for everybody even if the conversation is a bit difficult.
Sit in The Center of The Table
Sometimes, it’s tradition to sit at a certain spot at the table, but the best place 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 likely won’t have to strain as much to hear what people are saying. Make sure you speak up and let your family know if there is a place at the table that’s best for you.
Request a Lower Music Volume
Background noise poses a major problem for people with hearing loss because it’s hard for their ears to filter out this noise and focus in on speech. Ask your family to turn the music off or at least reduce the volume. If you are in a restaurant, ask to be seated as far away from speakers as you can and away from loud places, such as close to the kitchen, where you can hear the clanging of pots and pans.
Think About New Technologies
An FM system or a directional microphone are helpful solutions if you don’t already have them. Voices you want to hear are amplified and you can isolate background noise by turning away from it using these technologies.
Trying to Bluff Your Way Through Isn’t Good Plan
Your family members won’t know you’re struggling to hear if you don’t inform them. Hearing loss should never stop you from enjoying the fun of the holidays with your loved ones. Your family members will be happy to assist you with any adjustments you might need to make during your meal.