For most people, the recent warmer weather, and the prospect of social events out in the sun, are a source of great excitement. However, for someone with hearing loss, such gatherings can be a source of real anxiety. This centers around not being able to join in or feeling silly if you mishear something and often leads to people choosing to isolate themselves rather than to put measures in place so that they can feel included.
Ensure you find a quiet, well-lit location to sit. You can limit background noise by sitting away from speakers if music is playing and by joining a smaller group of conversation if possible. Lighting is important too. If you sit in a place where you can clearly see the faces of people you are talking to, you will be able to lipread much more easily.
Another way to make your environment more comfortable for you is to be open and honest with the people around you. Let them know that you are struggling so they can help you to feel more included. Small things such as introducing people to you when you arrive so you can call their attention or having a visual signal to let your friends know if you are struggling to hear without disrupting the conversation can change the scenario for you completely.
The least taxing step is to wear hearing aids, as this will make life so much easier for you. There can be an inner self-consciousness surrounding wearing hearing aids because it draws attention to the problem, but what will draw even more attention is the more visible struggle you will have if you don’t use them. Hearing aids today are technological marvels and have brilliant features to help aid with speech recognition and background noise.
If you haven’t already, the first step would be to speak to your local audiologist about suitable options.
Cardiff Hearing is a local, award- winning hearing care company with clinics in Cardiff, Taffs Well and recently opened in Cowbridge on 4 July 2023. For more information or to book a hearing test please call 029 2015 0022 or visit www.cardiffhearing.co.uk