Watching sports with Ted is incredibly frustrating. Enjoying the game is impossible because the volume is cranked up so loud that the walls shake. All you notice is the roar of the crowd pounding against your body, punctuated by the ear-shattering staccato of the announcer’s play-by-play calls.
It’s not pleasant. But the volume seems fine for Ted. He needs the TV to be extremely loud so he can hear it, which makes it rather clear he needs a hearing aid. You’re just not sure how to tell him that. His sensitivity about the topic makes what should be a straightforward conversation much more difficult.
These tips are a good place to start.
Encourage a Simple Exam
Ted needs to learn more about his hearing from an expert. Other people might not sound as credible when they talk to him about it. If that’s the case, the trick will be getting Ted (or anyone like him) to come see us.
One of the following strategies may help you do that:
- Try making him feel more comfortable by letting him know that it’s just a simple screening. In most cases, hearing screenings are fast and easy. Ted will receive his results on an audiogram, which will break down his hearing by frequency. The significance of the information can then be clarified by us.
- Recommend that both of you go together for back-to-back screenings. This can make starting the conversation easier. You might discover that you also have some level of hearing loss (depending on how long you’ve been subjected to loud noise).
Talk About Behaviors Associated With Hearing Loss
Hearing loss takes place gradually, often progressing so slowly it’s unnoticeable. When this occurs, you may acquire certain behaviors without realizing it. You can hint in a discreet way that Ted needs a hearing aid by putting attention on these behaviors.
Try some of these strategies:
- Point out instances where you need to translate what someone said. It may happen like this: your friend says something at dinner, Ted doesn’t hear or comprehend it, and you need to repeat what they said to Ted because you’re closer to him.
- Point out that he’s been avoiding talking to family members and friends on the phone because he has trouble hearing what they say.
- You could tell him your family has observed he’s been having a tough time hearing. Each year it seems as if fewer and fewer people are going over to watch the Big Game and that could be because the TV is turned up so loud.
The goal during these discussions is to keep your discussion centered on these behaviors rather than the disorder. Instead of talking about how Ted is experiencing hearing loss, mention how his hearing loss effects those around him.
Highlight The Technology in Contemporary Hearing Aids
Sometimes, reticence to using hearing aids comes from antiquated (but understandable) ideas of what hearing aids do and how they impact one’s personal appearance. It may not be a bad idea to emphasize the innovative technology employed by modern hearing aids.
Here are some examples:
- Modern hearing aids have an incredible amount of technology. Thanks to connectivity, for example, your hearing aids will pair seamlessly with your phone or even your TV speakers. This provides amplified volumes without noise or feedback.
- Typically, contemporary hearing aids are so small you can’t even see them. And, modern hearing aids are also comfortable to wear. They’re not bulky like they once were. They won’t even be seen by most people.
- Some hearing aids can even monitor your health and fitness biometrics and translate them in real time as well as other added features.
Hearing aids, for many individuals, are an ideal extension to their other smart technology. Modern hearing aids are very useful pieces of technology that allow you to enjoy live streaming.
Promote The Long-Term Benefits
Lastly, it’s worth taking time to mention the long-term advantages of hearing aids, which have been demonstrated to help people keep (or recover) mental equity. Essentially, your brain health depends on you being capable of hearing clearly.
You will keep more of your hearing undamaged in the long run if you treat your hearing loss as soon as possible. Hearing aids are calibrated to fill in specific sound wavelengths your ears have a difficult time discerning. When you simply turn up the volume you don’t fill in the particular frequencies that are missing.
Understanding that your hearing can be preserved by getting treatment when you first notice signs of hearing impairment will help people like Ted feel comfortable getting the help they need.