We all look forward to celebrating with family or friends at this time of year, but wearing a hearing aid can mean that conversation is extra challenging at social events.
We all look forward to celebrating with family or friends at this time of year, but wearing a hearing aid can mean that conversation is extra challenging at social events. The combination of so many noises, background music, clinking cutlery and lively conversation can be tricky for a person with a hearing loss to navigate.
There’s a high likelihood that someone at the table may need some extra help following the conversation.
Here are our tips to help you make the most of the festive period:
- Control your environment – Let your host know that you have a hearing loss and ask if you can be seated away from noisy technology and speakers, ideally somewhere where you can see most people’s faces if possible (a round table is best for this).
- Look at people – Seeing the gestures and faces of the people speaking will help you to lip read and understand what they are saying. Turning down background music or postponing noisy or distracting tasks like doing the dishes should mean that you don’t have to rely on lip reading as much as it will be easier to focus on conversation.
- Set up a quiet area - If you have a large group or family gathering you could try setting up a ‘quiet area’ where people can go and chat without distraction from background noise. Try to choose an area with soft furnishings as they will absorb more sound.
- Regularly clean your hearing aids - Cleaning your hearing aids ensures that they operate at their maximum potential. For example, ear moulds should be cleaned once a week with a wax pick and brush to prevent earwax from accumulating and causing sound to become muffled. Avoid using alcohol wipes and harsh chemicals as they can damage your hearing aids.
- Stock up on batteries or have a charger nearby - As the weather gets colder battery life can get shorter, so keeping a healthy supply of batteries or your charger nearby will ensure that you can interact with everyone the whole way through celebrations.
- Wear your hearing aids around the house - The more you wear your hearing aids, the more practice your brain has at translating sounds into signals you can understand.
- Play games - Try playing card and board games to ease any strain your ears may be experiencing after a long day of socialising without cutting the party short.
- Have a check-up - Having a check-up or reassessment before the festive period will ensure your hearing devices are working to the best of their ability. You should consider asking your audiologist about the features your hearing aid has; joining and interacting in conversations during festivities can be tricky if you have a hearing loss, so take advantage of all the features your hearing aid comes with so you can enjoy every moment – from the hustle and bustle of the kitchen to the bang of a Christmas cracker.
At Hearing Care Centre, we understand your hearing is for life, not just for Christmas! If you or a loved one have any concerns about your hearing or dealing with large group gatherings as a hearing aid user, you can book an appointment to talk to one of our expert audiologists by calling us on 01473 230 330