Caring for Someone with Hearing Loss

Information for Caregivers, Friends and Loved Ones

Hearing loss affects more than an individual. So treatment benefits family members, colleagues and friends. Encouraging someone to seek help may be hard, but it helps caregivers and those with hearing loss equally. Let Michigan Hearing improve communication for your family.

“I just told you!” Identifying a cry for help

Often, a person with hearing loss does not realize how little they hear (or is in denial). It may take a little courage, patience and persistence to convince someone to accept or address hearing loss. Today, many people equate hearing aids to eyeglasses. With new tech-savvy models, these nearly invisible, unobtrusive and stylish hearing devices are ending yesterday's negative stereotypes.

Helping a friend or family member with hearing loss

We get it. It’s hard to be patient when a family member has hearing loss. Perhaps you have experienced challenging situations frequently, such as repeating yourself, having to interpret for someone, or uncomfortably loud TV volume.

Do not despair – we have help for caregivers, family and friends. Here are some basic tips for speaking about hearing loss with loved ones:

Best practices for communicating well:

  • Get the person’s attention before speaking.
  • Sit three to six feet from the other person at eye level.
  • Do not shout. Shouting can distort sounds. Instead, speak slowly and clearly.
  • Avoid speaking directly into the person’s ear, as this can distort sound if they are wearing a hearing device.
  • Reduce background noise – turn down the TV or music or move into a more quiet space to talk.
  • Instead of repeating yourself, try to rephrase the sentence.

When your loved one hears well, everyone wins

Once treated, you may notice positive changes in previously reclusive social behavior. Your loved one may become more active in their community and feel more engaged at work or home.

If you think that you or a loved one may be suffering from hearing loss, we invite you to consult with one of our hearing care specialists to discuss your concerns. We can work with you to optimize communication and address what's worrying you.

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