The holiday dinner table is loaded with delicious food and everyone is humming with conversation – except you. You’re having trouble hearing the discussion, so you choose to stay out of the conversation.
However, you don’t have to forgo making holiday memories because of hearing loss. Talk with your loved ones and take steps to make sure everyone is included in the festivities.
Tips For You During The Holidays
Holiday parties create lots of ambient noise which can hearing difficult. Your brain will be working hard to process all these sounds and can cause cognitive overload, inhibiting your ability to properly form memories.
Tip: Make sure your hearing aids are working and keep them clean. Some hearing aids offer applications like speech enhancement and directional microphones to cancel out background noise.
Dinner around the table is a great time to catch up with family and friends during the holidays but hearing loss can make these conversations difficult.
Tip: Seat yourself at the end of the table to focus your hearing away from the crowd. If you are in the middle of several conversations, partner with a relative to repeat things that you may miss. Use visual clues like cupping your ear to indicate a louder volume.
Not all family members will come home for the holidays and you don’t want to miss out on the chance to speak with your loved ones. However, phone calls pose an obstacle to hearing those cherished conversations and lead to frustration.
Tip: Use video chat media like Skype or Facetime to have long-distance talks with family. You’ll be able to see their faces, read lips, and use facial expressions to clarify their words. The team at Hearing Associates also recommends Clear Captions and CaptionCall. These are free caption phone services provided through the FCC to patients that have been certified with hearing loss by an audiologist/HIS. Contact our office at 888.760.2032 to learn more.
Tips For Your Loved Ones
The glow from lights and candles are perfect to create a cozy atmosphere, but low lighting will make it difficult for those with hearing loss to see visual cues and read lips.
Tip: Provide plenty of lighting throughout your home during holiday parties. This will provide people with enough light to help them interact with guests anywhere they sit.
Music is a must at parties especially during the holidays. Sometimes music is turned up louder so it can still be heard over the din of conversation, other times it’s drowned out altogether.
Tip: Set the tunes on a low volume or shut them off, especially if they are overpowered by conversation. The added background noise only serves as an auditory obstacle for those with hearing loss.
As the festivities wind down, you may be tempted to start cleaning up. Clattering dishes and cutlery can pose a problem for those with hearing loss since it creates more background sound.
Tip: Enjoy your time with guests and wait until after they depart before cleaning up. This will give you plenty of time to enjoy your party without creating additional extra noise.
Learn more about how Hearing Associates can keep your hearing healthy during the holidays and call us at 888.760.2032 or make an appointment online.